If you’re hanging and you know it, clap your hands…barf, barf.
Last month, I went out. Like out, out. Without children. Without inhibitions. And very much, with alcohol. It didn’t end well….
It had been exactly 479 days since my last alcohol fuelled girls night out so I was more excited than a two peckered Billy goat. This night off was literally all I could think about the whole week running up to it. Adult conversation. Being able to eat the food that I ordered. No floaters in my table water after being forced to share with a tiny backwashing dictator who annoyingly likes to remind me to ‘bagi bagi mummy‘ (the indonesian version of ‘sharing is caring’ that has come back to bite me on the ass at moments not of my choosing!). And no mini me stealing a sip from my mojito while the baby creates a diversion! It happened once. Ok, twice.
I have two kids and we live 4 degrees north of the equator – my default hair setting is towel dried and often up by 9am and as for makeup, anything more than tinted SPF moisturiser is a waste of time since I’m just gonna sweat it off anyway! So I save hair and make up for nights out and when they roll around, I relish the time to get ready. Hubs likes to moan that it takes me two hours to get ready. Not true. I could be ready in 30 minutes but I like to drag it out and add steps to the routine that are usually lacking such as exfoliating, moisturising, drying my hair and taking my time to do a little makeup as if I actually know what I’m doing. You know, like those naturally pretty, childless, teen instagrammers who churn out make up tutorials. “I like to use Bobby Brown’s Full Cover Concealer in Cool Sand…” Oh piss of Khloe with a ‘K’ – you’re an “IT consultant” for your dad’s greengrocer, not Charlotte Tilbury. And you’re about 12 years old! Your skin is flawless, you don’t need concealer. Look me up in 20 years when you’re a couple kids down and several years into sleep deprivation with eyes like Kung-Fu Panda. Concealer won’t cut it then sweetheart, its thick camo paint you need. I like Warm Beige.
I spent the days running up to my night out imagining how I’m going to do my hair and makeup and what I’m going to wear and how freaking put together I’m going to look (you, two kids? No way!) and feel for a change but life like to giveth and taketh away. I should’ve been quietly f**king grateful with my freedom. A clear path there was clearly too much to ask!
We’d spent all morning surfing over on the other side of the island. The plan was to surf in the morning, have lunch and the kids could nap in the car on the way home getting us in mid afternoon with way more than enough time for me to piss fart around getting organised before boobing the baby to sleep and heading out the door. Any mother who has endured a significant dry spell between nights ‘off’, say 479 days, will tell you that upholding the routine of the day preceding the night out is paramount to success (by success I mean getting out the door on time with no SOS calls from the babysitter, sorry, I meant husband). If they’re not tired enough, its gonna throw things but if they’re over tired….you’re fucked. Mine were over tired. Our ‘car nap’ plan went sideways quickly after the heavens opened and flooding ensued meaning the normally hour long drive home took more than two hours and also meant the car didn’t move fast enough to lull the kids to sleep.
This, plus the fact that we were late leaving the beach meant that my plan to get ready in my own sweet time went to hell in a hand basket. So you can imagine my frustration when the power went off just as I began to shampoo the saltwater out of my hair! This is Bali, the power going off isn’t unusual. Sometimes its a grid switch off but more often, if you try to put on AC in more than one bedroom at the same time as the water pump, pool pump and the washing machine, it will trip a fuse. But this time it wasn’t our fault. Thunder storms are an almost nightly occurrence here during the rainy season and a particularly bad one a few days before that not only took out two trees in our back garden, one of which ended up in the pool, but it screwed up our electrics. Since that storm, the power keeps tripping but this is the first time its gone out and stayed out. I finish my shower in now almost complete darkness (it goes from dusk to dark in 30 minutes here) dry off and go to see what the chat is. Fifteen minutes previously, my parting words to hubby upon going for a shower were ‘honey, if the kids are finished eating, can you shower them and get them into their pyjamas?‘ but coming back downstairs I find, to my horror, that the kids aren’t even close to being ready for bed. Eia is still dressed as rice, chicken and vegetables, Arlo is eating grains of rice off of Marley (the dog) and all I can make out of Hardin is his sweet ass in the air, buried under the side board, flashlight in hand, looking for the mouse which has apparently moved back in (assuming its the same one Pak Ketut caught the week before and freed, clearly not far enough away from the damn house!) God as my witness, it took all my strength not to plug his fine ass with the bloody flashlight there and then, instead opting to grit my teeth and say as sweetly as I could muster (because I still need to keep him on side to get out the door on time) “honey, maybe you can worry about the mouse later and we can get the kids ready for bed before it’s darker than Frankie Boyle’s sense of humour?” This seemed to snap him out of it and to his credit, he came upstairs with no arguments before the implications of the lack of power dawned on him. Disclaimer: I adore my husband. He is a wonderful husband and incredible father but when he’s not keen on doing something, say all of a sudden having to spend the night alone in darkness without wifi, without AC in the bedroom and with two kids who may or may not wake up due to the heat, all of which serve a very large threat to the chilled night he had in mind, he can very quickly become the problem, instead of the solution. “We’re going to have to go to a hotel, we can’t stay here without AC‘ he says. Back the fuck up! Say what now? I’ll admit my motives in this moment are entirely selfish. I wanna go out. My adults only freedom is within touching distance and I’m not ready to pass it up, yet. I was in the exact same situation a few nights ago when the storm was doing its damage. No AC, kids waking frequently, everybody sweating – it was shit AND I went outside three times in the pissing rain and pitch black to put the power back on until at 2am I chose a sweaty sleep over this merry dance with the fuses. So my argument is basically put your big boy pants on and suck it up. Time to wo-man up sweetheart! He see’s sense and decides to call PLN, the state electric company, while I boob the baby to sleep. They’re gonna send a guy. Eia goes to sleep without too much fuss and now I can turn my attention to getting ready in the 15 mins I have left before my lift arrives. Dreams of blow drying my hair into a smooth, shiny style evaporate (natural beachy waves it is then!) and given the near complete darkness, I can’t be sure if I’m putting mascara on my eyelashes or eyebrows when the car arrives but I grab my sandals and get the hell out of dodge.
Expat Bali joke – Kuta is for the teens, Seminyak is for the party hard early 20 something’s and Canggu is for the 30-ish vegan poke bowl eating, fresh coconut drinking, wannabe surfer crowd. We’re a group of margarita drinking mums over 30. So we went out in Sanur. Sanur is popular with families and retirees, both tourists or local foreigners. It’s just about the right amount of touristy to offer a good night out without any of the idiots. We inhaled our meal at Taquisa and moved on to Casablanca (those Mexicans really know how to have a good time!), a live music joint with tasty mojitos and a dancefloor. And I love to dance. Two tequilas, a marguerita and I forget what else, has me feeling pretty loose and fuzzy already so when the bar man rocks up with a complimentary drink for me, the birthday girl, with what I can only assume is ethanol laced petrol given how well it burns when he sets it alight, it was always gonna be all down hill from there. The band call me onto the floor for a victory lap of the dance floor to their take on ‘Happy Birthday’ and after that it all gets a bit disjointed.
At the time I felt fine, dancing the night away, sweating (the booze out, or so I thought) like a nun in a cucumber field but when they called last orders and we stopped dancing, the sudden lack of motion in my feet allowed my brain to register the spinning in my head. F**k knows how I managed to message Saiful, the driver, in flawless Indonesian (and I only know this after checking my WhatsApp the next morning trying to piece together how he knew to pick us up). I’m no Virgin Mary but I can count on two hands the number of nights I’ve been so wasted I’ve tossed my cookies. With my limited experience in this area (ha, ha) it seemed like a good plan to be sick in my bag to save the car. It was not so much of a good plan to Chloe, who’s bag I’d borrowed for the night. Luckily when she asked me if I was ok and I confessed my plan about 2 minutes before executing it, she asked Saiful to pull over and I lost my dinner in the got (a sort of deep gutter). This happened once more before dropping Chloe off and I vaguely remember some bright spark (either Debbie or Chloe) hooking me up with aspirin and water which totally saved me the next day. After that I must have passed out because the next thing I remember was waking up at 6.30am with the kids and feeling not too bad, surprisingly. However, hubby took great pleasure in filling me in on the details he was privy too, like Saiful having to phone him to open the gate because I was passed out in the front seat. Or how he had to carry me up to bed. Oops. And he thoroughly enjoyed my rapid descent from waking feeling fine to hanging over my poached eggs, bacon and avocado (what the hell was I thinking!) in the cafe he took us to for breakfast that morning. Note to self – on mornings such as these, the correct answer to the question ‘where do you wanna go out for breakfast?‘ McDonalds.
I wish I could say that I’ve learned my lesson but by the time all this coronavirus shit blows over in, for example, 479 days, I’ll be first in line at Casablanca.