Date: 20 July.
Do you think hangovers accumulate? I used to think not. I used to think that, like your unused monthly broadband allowance, hangovers didn't rollover at their end date, regardless of now you treated them. Now I think differently. Now I think that hangovers behave more like dirty dishes in the sink: you can ignore them all you like but, at some point, you have to put your gloves on and deal with the slimy mess you've created.
I knew that I was bound to have a homecoming binge at some point. And then, just as I thought maybe I'd forecast wrongly, it happened this weekend past.
It started on Wednesday night. Frustrated already by the job-seeking process, I exercised a lady's prerogative (also known as 'sent a really cranky text message') to the friend I was meeting for a drink and, purely for my own convenience, shifted the venue to my local bar, East Melbourne's posh but adorable Tippler. The friend in question was a guy who had, back during my private girls' school days, been part of the private boys' school group we hung out with every single weekend. Curiously enough, he's now grown up to teach at a private girls school. Oh, the stories I could tell those girls… In appearance he resembles a grown up Harry Potter. So, since he won't be reading this, I can exercise another preogative of mine and call him whatever I please. 'Gryffidnor' pleases me. Anyway, at drinks, I whinged (but had the good grace to do it hilariously), Gryff listened and made all the right noises. It was happy hour.
I woke up on Thursday feeling a little bleary eyed. However, I ignored that as Thursday night was karaoke night. With only a chocolate Freddo to serve as Dutch courage, I braved an annual karaoke night with my old work team — including the partners right down to the grads. I was obscenely and inexplicably nervous. After all, they'd invited me unprompted, which was an incredibly kind gesture given I'd quit and run off to India 3 months ago with little or no warning. Thankfully, the stereotype about lawyers working and playing hard is based in fact and, by the time we left a pre-karaoke dumpling dinner at Hutong, it was as though I'd never left the firm. Then there were the butterscotch shots, the Chandon, the seemingly endless supply of Asahis. And the karaoke. So much Spice Girls. Over the few years that the team has been putting on these karaoke nights, a rather terrible tradition has developed. The most junior member of the team must 'borrow' a prop from the night to award to the 'best performer' at the morning meeting on the following Monday. Trophies past have included a maraca and a tambourine. I admit, this is a little cruel, but as the firm's tab at the end of the night well exceeds a cool grand, it's not pure evil. Besides, the partners support (well, turn a blind eye to) the tradition and surely partners in a sizeable corporate law firm are bound to be bastions of ethic — ok stop, I can't even type that. Suffice to say that work karaoke nights get a but messy. But you could have guessed that.
Friday I felt somewhat shabby, but ignored it, grateful that I need not get up go to work, but only to the dentist, Friday night was Date Night with the current bachelor: a character who sadly appears so briefly here that he doesn't even get a nickname. This was date 6 or 7 or so and I wasn't precisely 'feeling it' so I approached the evening with a sense of dread mottling heavily with a sense of futility in the pit of my stomach. The boy gets points for a well planned evening out: an evening drink, tickets to the Melbourne Theatre Club's performance of Glengarry, followed by dinner. Unfortunately my public transport skills aren't great and I was 30 minutes late (utterly inexusable when I live 20 minutes from the theatre, and an inauspicious beginning to the night) so I missed a much-needed Pinot. However, I made up for it after the show, attempting to verify the hypothesis that people become more attractive after a few drinks. However, the experiment failed in this instance and I found myself asking our cab diver to drop me home, setting the stage for the difficult conversation I would later have with the boy, whilst horrifically hungover, on Sunday.
Saturday, I felt severely under the weather but ignored it. On Saturday night a friend notorious for having house parties of epic proportions was hosting 'a drink' to celebrate his birthday. Let's call this guy Van Wilder. None of us had much doubt that the night would end with 10 people all trying to use his sofa as a dance floor podium while S Club 7 shook the Richmind terrace house. When he posted to Facebook a photo of 2 litres of Fizzer-infused vodka, the doubt decreased. When he texted to ask if I had any song requests for his playlist and my suggestion of Katy Perry's 'Birthday' received a positive response, all doubt vanished. And it was, indeed, an evening of epic proportions and there was, indeed, early 2000s pop music blasting from the speakers at some point well past midnight. However, it also eventuates into somewhat of a coupley evening. I've said it before but there's something in the air at the moment (super moon, anyone?). This winter seems to be the season of love. (Oh, and the opposite: for everyone make-out or make-up I hear of, I hear of a break-up.) Bunky brought her new squeeze, Tassels was unable to resist the charms (/persistence) of her French ex-boyfriend, Van Wilder was propped up against his new lady friend, an ex f mine against his current.
When the guy who sidled up to me and immediately mentioned that he “works out” seemed an appealing prospect, I knew it was time to take my Fizzer-vodka-sodden self home.
Now, here I am, doing my metaphorical grimy dishes.