Saturday, September 27, 2008

A post in two parts

There is a flat rock on the window kitty-corner to me. The orange of the setting sun doesn’t reach it. I don’t know if it ever will and I don’t know if I will ever find out. Apparently the sun isn’t something that is seen often around here. At least, this is what people keep telling me, except I’ve been here for a week and a half now and it’s been sunny and gorgeous every day. In fact, it’s been so warm that I have to keep my window open at night, which consequently allows the melodious sounds of the construction site just outside to waft into my room every morning at 8 am. (or so. I’m not sure, I’m never quite conscious even after I stumble up to pull the window to.)
It’s a small window, but I love it. My desk is pushed up against it and I can set my tea mug on the sill while I curl up on the desk in the corner made by the wall and the window. It’s no great view, but now that there’s a rock on the sill diagonal from me, it’s more interesting. Also, I can see the river below me, which is always nice.

The birthday went well. It started at 2 am, which is always amusing. I had just stormed back from a club after the few scraggly remainders of our group had wandered off. I mean, this group consisted of mostly Americans, all friends from the early start program, and moved like someone’s Large Aunt Marge: kinda slow and indecisively, and parts occasionally attempted to go in different directions. I really want to go to this club Wait, there’s a cover ch– Cover charge? That’s ridiculous 10 euro Ridiculous, I’m not paying that Lets just go to An Brogue Wait, but someone said there’s a 10 euro cover charge anywhere I just wanna dance There shouldn’t be a cover charge on a barCan’t we just go somewhere I just wanna dance I’m not going to pay a cover charge I’M LOOSING MY BUZZ JUST GET ME A F’ING DRINK why don’t we just go to a bar Okay we’re going to a bar I juss wanna dance Wait where are they going Why are they going off that way Ladies please get out of the street Ladies please get in the line or move on I wanna dance I’m going I can’t stand this This is why I hate going out with Americans Dude, you are American I’m just going to go get a pint because I need an F’ING drink Just get in line, we’ll just go in here I’M NOT PAYING A 10 EURO COVER I NEED A DRINK.

Somehow, moving amorphously, we made our way to a couple of different bars. I met some kids from California and we discussed high culture topics like “hypy” and “thizz face” and the word “hella.” Stimulating conversation. But we also stumbled on an awesome live music venue. It was just what you’d expect from a live music venue in Ireland. It was dark and cave-like, with little booths and alcoves and nooks and crannies for hiding oneself in. The bar was long, old and wooden and rested on stone which curved up from the ground to form the randomly-placed arches above our heads. And then, as the old man who worked there somehow managed to communicate through such a thick accent that even I couldn’t understand him, if you just turned the corner, cozied away in a corner sat the band. And the music they played was wonderful. See, after 6 years as an Irish dancer, when I hear really traditional Irish music, my stomach seizes up. I start to get nervous and I feel like laughing or crying or both. I think it’s my psyche preparing to dance competitively. But the music that night was a little bit more modern and much looser, so I could just enjoy.

But I digress.

They had quite the time dragging me away.
And after much more debate, we somehow all ended up at the Brogue. Which I like. They tend to play rock and indie music. And we tend to start the dancing. But I dislike it when, after most of the group has peaced and started the long stumble home, the three people protecting me from the skeeves that come with every dance floor drunkenly wander off. Because that’s when the wolves close in. I watched the four guys who had been leering at the girls in our group edging nearer and nearer. And maybe I’m exaggerating, but I think maybe they licked their chops. Just maybe.

Long story short, I got pissy and stalked home.

And that is exactly when my birthday started. I checked facebook, of course, before heading up to my apartment, when three of my drunken friends burst into the common room and sang a raucous round of happy birthday. Oh it was indeed a heart-warming start to my birthday.

The day itself was all about self-mutilation, self-indulgence and those fantastic songs in which I see myself. See, I feel it’s important to set a precedent for the new year on the first day of said year. This, of course applies to all new-years: birthday years, school years, and the conventional New Year. Thus I started my 20th year dressed sharply in a new shirt, that I might always feel fresh, new and confident, and new knowledge, that I might always be learning an expanding my horizons.

I learned that there is no good Mexican food in Cork and I should have trusted those who told me this before.

I learned that tourist information can be your own private GPS.

I learned that it is a bad idea to get pierced on your birthday for two:
1) it hurts like hell and I get all weepy afterward which is not fun on your birthday.
2) it continues to hurt for the rest of the evening, which is rather distracting from the birthday fun.

Also I learned that, contrary to what you may think, alcohol does not dull the pain of self-mutilation no matter how much you have, and actually, it may increase said pain.

I learned that it’s not a good idea to get one ear pierced when the other is still sore from your last piercing because, how are you going to sleep?

I learned that “Italian Rice” is not “Arborio Rice” and if you try to cook risotto for dinner with it, you will only succeed in making onion-y rice and will have to run down to the Centra and buy last minute chicken and bell peppers to sauté. Which will be okay, because everyone will either love it or just say that they love it because you cooked it on your birthday and also because it will be a delicious snack when you are later dealing with the drunchies.

I learned that I am now 20 years old, a thing that did not register until everyone sang me happy birthday over two pints of soy ice cream with a “2” candle and a “0” candle.

Finally I learned that the cute bartender does not work at the Washington Inn on Friday nights.

Quite an enlightening day, if I do say so myself.

The birthday is due to continue tonight since we were all exhausted last night. Don’t get excited, but I may get a birthday crown.

The Washington Inn inadvertently gave me a pint glass for my birthday.

Also. I bought a fiddle. What?!?


Heidi Fuller said...

Here's to the fiddle. Here's to the wisdom of 20 years and the knowledge that 30 will be here before you want it to be. So enjoy this one!

Heidi Fuller said...

that was actually dad's comment (as i was using mom's computer... doh!)