A new low: Leaving Italy with a bang, not a whimper.

At the weekend I did a very uncharacteristic, go getter, short hop over to Italy to pack my stuff. Four years in 10 boxes. And a lot of rubbish and poor decisions being left behind… It’s being shipped over now, at a very competitive rate thank fuck. So with the smallest of investments here, just plates and pots and clothes hangers, I am up and running and settled and back in a motherfucking DOUBLE BED, like the pimp ass mac daddy you know me to be. My new place is sweeter than the Candyman’s jizz, it’s the cat’s pyjamas, the snail’s lingerie. It gives the impression of a hotel room, except it has a pretty decent kitchen for making banana bread and impressing male visitors.

Now I don’t know if I ever mentioned this to you before, but living in a hotel room is one of my life’s ambitions. Not, as one might suppose, because of the maid service, I don’t like people rooting around in my stuff and judging the odor I leave hanging in the room after spending 10+ hours ruminating in my bed. No, it’s just the air of hotelishness I like. The tasteful but impersonal decor. The lack of clutter….

Maybe this is a side effect of growing up in a house of hippie style hoarders, full of dust and corners and little things collected and never thrown away and ornaments and drawers full of dead batteries and used sellotape rolls… and the spiders, oh god the spiders, the spiders that are taken to the garden by my mother and tipped out of a pint glass, presumably as a lesson to them, and don’t come back now you hear? Outside the door. Fucks sake if I was a spider I would be coming right back inside to the warmth and the web I had built, and the knowledge nobody would ever kill me no matter how many times I came back.

Anyway, hotel rooms… my dream. It’s a fairly humble dream, it’s not “own your own island” or “live on a beach with a giant tortoise butler” or anything. Aim low to avoid disappointment. Not that that’s my motto. I don’t even tend to aim… I add goals in retrospect, whenver I happen to land somewhere good.

So in my room right now… my apartment… it is quite hotel-like. I have a big bed again to spread out in and hopefully soon… lure some lucky bastard back here with solid, fleshy promises. (cringe… in retrospect… I think I may have been aiming TOO low…)

It’s comfy but a bit creaky, but I have a couch too so if the bed isn’t much good for sexing I think the couch looks pretty good and solid. It’ll be GREAT. I’m sure of it…

But before we got to this almost-sorted state… where all I await is my internet to be hooked up tomorrow and a job to maintain “the dream”… I’m workin’ on it, I swear…

There’s the small matter of last weekend to impart.


Last weekend. Wednesday…..

In the style of a busy and important person who laughs in the face of flight-a-phobia, I boarded a plane bound for Italy via turbulence and terrified introspection, and alighted amid the chatter of a hundred spikey haired, eyebrow-perfect teenagers.

“Che figata!” is their “cool!” and it means something like “what vagina!”

Hearing them predictably ooh and ahh and make fun of each other, I begin to bristle with anti-Italianism.

I survey my ex-patria aloof. The next five days yawn before me, wide, barren, like my vagina in 10 years if I keep going at this rate. WHY didn’t I just get a two day round trip? Five whole days…. I don’t want to be here. Fucking Italians…

Picturing Fabio’s eager face like an NPC in some badly written game. Realise that’s how I see ALL of the Italians. Like NPCs with limited dialogue. Oh my… I think that’s a pretty sure sign of racism. Maybe that’s how Hitler saw Jews… except, he woudln’t have known what an npc was and I’m not the murdering type, if Hitler had been like me he would have just moved to a country where there were less Jews to bother him, and there would have been no nazi party at all, he would have just lived out his years moaning about the Jews and how much they annoyed him.

Anyway…. getting sidetracked. If I’m racist against Italians at least I’m not a dick about it.

To their faces.


I shudder at the thought of a pit stop with Fabio. Remember: no more of that unsexy sex. Only passionate flings where sheets become entangled around sweaty ankles and there is audible panting and gasping afterwards. His face floats before me locked in an eternal grin of non understanding. Like a dog you are not going to take for a walk today, who sees you putting on your coat.

Sorry, boy… It’s not gonna happen.

Bus and train and bus, and am fined on the train because despite trying to buy a ticket on the platform, the machine wouldn’t work, and I was going to miss my train so I boarded anyway and imediately found the ticket guy and informed him what happened, and of course am fined anyway. Only five euros on top of the ticket but still, it grinds my gears and cements Italy in the shrill and cold perspective I already favoured.

Ticket guy won’t let me sit in first class either. Not sure why I decided to take a stand and select first class. I was grouchy and tired, I guess… I know how things work in Italy, you get fined if you don’t have a ticket, that’s how it always works, I was just feeling belligerent and rebellious.

“IT DOESNT WORK THAT WAY!” He repeats to me, incredulous at my audacity as I wave flimsy excuses and appeals to his humanity… Bear in mind, first class is just a slightly less worn fake leather seat than second class, but second class is pretty full and the inhabitants, my fellow plebs, are cackling and roaring and I don’t want to be there with them. Not with my suitcase and Ireland-weather-layers of coat and hat and scarf, all bundled up in my arms… I would just have to sit with everything on top of me for the whole journey.

“You can’t just do whatever you want!” he says, as I try the blase approach, just act as if OBVIOUSLY I have the right to be in first class… It fails, of course.

“WANT? WANT!?” I tell him.

“I didn’t WANT to not be able to use the ticket machine! I didn’t WANT to get up at 5am to catch a flight that would take me an hour in the wrong direction before I had to get three hours of extra buses and trains because no one flies to the local fucking airport! WANT! WANT! Don’t talk to me about WANT!”

He just looks at me in confusion, and slight disgust at my making a spectacle of myself.

“I’m not drinking free champagne here, or listening to classical music! I just want a SEAT. I paid for one! This class business is ridiculous anyway…. ”

He shakes his head and offers to help me find a seat in second class.

NO! THERES NO NEED! I furiously bustle away with my suitcase and winter layers and sit in the bit between carriages opposite the stinky toilet, for two hours, fuming and wishing the ticket man wasn’t still wandering around, so I could go sit down in one of the many available second class seats like a good girl but keep hold of this scrap of something I think resembled my dignity.

I hadn’t slept much, is my defence. There wasn’t a whole lot of sense to my insisting on sitting in first class, but I seized it and ran with the stupid argument as a kind of final nail in the coffin of my Italian existence.

I didn’t want to be in Italy. I imagined Irish bus and train people would have smilingly helped me on my way and there would never even BE a first class because hello? What the fuck is this, the Titanic? Can I get a seat in steerage?

I picture Dublin, a team of kindly green-clad rail employees carrying my cases for me and waving me on and making me glow with the inner light of an appreciated and non flustered woman.

In my fantasy I am wearing tan coloured world war two style dress and neat gloves and a “slick” of lipstick and carrying a hat box. In reality I am layered in jumpers, I didn’t wear makeup because airport… and getting up at 5am… and my hair is unbrushed… and I’m wearing ugly worn out boots because I am going to throw them away before I leave to save suitcase space.

But just… fuck Italy. There’s no humanity. I don’t even know if Ireland is more human but I suspect it is. Italy’s just so damned burocratic. I don’t know… with my perspective, it’s hard to have a good experience in Italy. I just make it too hard for myself…

I realise I have to see Andrea and go out with her… and I cringe and think of how awful it will be to revisit the scene of so many non events and waste money on drinks here. Fuck it, I have to see Andrea.

Anyway. The train journey does not actually, as I begin to fear it will, last forever. I eventually land back with my family. My apartment is already occupied with a friend of my dad’s who needed a place to stay short term. So the good thing is I already have someone paying most of the mortgage, but the bad news is I don’t have a place to stay! I’m on a tiny mattress in my dad’s house. In the room with my little sisters. They are hugely excited. Bouncing up and down on the beds showing me new books and toys and look how far i can jump and see this new dress? And my oldest little sister whispers about a boy who likes her and makes all kinds of secretive eyebrow movements indicating we will talk properly later… And all I think in the midst of their happiness is, this is great but now how am I going to masturbate?

Five days… It aint gonna be pretty.

I spend two days in my old apartment, the new tenant’s stuff in an annoying heap in the bedroom, and I immerse myself in four years of accumulated crud. Sorting things to keep, things to toss…. Ugh.

Clothes I never wore, clothes I love but had forgotten due to the sheer amount of clothes I own… shoes that need repair, boxes and boxes and boxes…

All the old papers I would throw in folders without any thought of organisation.

Photos of my wedding day. Husband looking like Latino Elvis in a hawaiian shirt. Me grinning stupidly at his side, socially awkward on my wedding day, my hair a disaster, my face pink and my legs pasty. I grit my teeth looking at those pictures but can’t throw them away. I had to look shitty on my wedding day…

Those photos are doomed to float forever in the “misc” files, occasionally dredged up and cast back again with ugly memories and lurking pain.

Receipts for electronics long broken and discarded… Oh, you were still in warranty…. Shame.

Drawings my husband drew. Mostly shit, just sketches or cartoons, but all run through with his style… reminding me of the cuter drawings he gave me, of friendly dolphins or monkeys or a little baby deer with my name and an arrow pointing to it. It had long eyelashes.

I had the baby deer in my wallet but then my wallet was stolen.

I threw the drawings out but it tore at me in the chestal region.

I felt husband’s eyes on me, his eyes when he signed the initial separation request… full of tears and a tiny flickering hope that I strangled with an outward display of unfeeling.

He probably thinks I’m a heartless bitch. You’re fucking welcome husband. I only did that so you wouldn’t have false hope and so you would be able to move on quicker and hate me. YOUR FUCKNG WELCOME.

I come across a note I left for husband one day. I drew a little pig with a curly tail, probably to soften the nagging that was to come in the note. I mean that’s what I would have thought it was, nagging, because I was so wrapped up in feeling like I was in the wrong all the time.

The note, however, was as follows:

“Good morning my love! Please please please if you get a chance please fill up that hole in the bathroom where the bidet used to be… this morning I was having a shower and a cockroach came into the shower and was looking at me. It was only a little one but still you know I can’t stand bugs and especially cockroaches so please if you get a chance fill that hole in because I think that’s where it came from. Lots of love and call me later at work… I miss youuuuu… xxxxxxx”

Ok so aside from that I am a ridiculously pathetic sap when I am in love… grrr no more of that now… not for a while… pleeeeaaase brain don’t do it to me again I can’t stand myself all feeble and needy…

ASIDE from that…

I went into the bathroom and guess what? A fucking hole. He never fixed the hole. I drew him a pig and asked really nicely and I just remembered his casual reply a few days later, “the cockroach didn’t come from the hole. It came in because you didn’t clean the kitchen”.


I root through the bin where I had gingerly placed his old drawings, and I rip them up with religious zeal. MFO ANGRY! MFO SMASH!!!! MWAAHHAHAHAHA I NEVER LOVED YOU, BASTARD!!!!

And then I get pangs again, of those big eyes all sad because I hurt him and cast him out..

Oh well.

I briefly consider keeping the note as evidence of my righteousness for future hate sessions but decide to let go and file it in “rubbish”

Almost done sorting through four years of shared memories when I come across the wedding cards.

Congrats on your wedding day! I shouldn’t read inside but I have a fixation with cards, I ALWAYS open old cards and check for money. Of course there isn’t money inside but what if there is? So I wind up reading a cornucopia of sweet but lately fermented and cloying wedding wishes. Long life and happiness! To many years together! On this wonderful journey in life!… Puhlease.

Fuck off.

A fleeting feeling of accusation to my family. No one thought to risk pissing me off, no one bothered telling it to me straight. My aunt was married and divorced young… she must have known…

Then I remember I am the most headstrong and stubborn person I know and there is NOTHING anyone could have said to talk me out of it. But the cards piss me off anyway…. It’s TOO much sincerity and hope, it’s ugly now….

My mother is the worst culprit. She’s lovely in that she makes cards and collages and writes very sweet things but now, in retrospect, coming across a birthday card with a photo of me and husband where i don’t even look pretty and all sorts of red cut out hearts on it is just sticking in my craw. I don’t want to throw it out because my mother made it for me with love but I don’t want to keep it either because as I said, I don’t even look pretty in the pictures.

I lay them in the misc folder and renew the vow to myself, to stay fucking single and please next time I fall in love let it be with a rational skeptical person who can’t abide sentimentality either and therefore doesn’t tug it out of me….

And I’m done. Two days later, lots of crying and anger and folding clothes and making tough decisions. “BELT, I NEVER WORE YOU BEFORE WHY WOULD I WEAR YOU NOW?”

I finally lay to rest the hideous boxy houndstooth jacket I have been keeping because it is so totally brilliant for an 80s fancy dress party but seriously… I have to stop hoarding things just because they would be good for future theoretical fancy dress parties I will never go to.

And six bin liners later, and many promises to be good with my money, and I’m done.

And, just because the days are still stretching ahead, far too empty… what else will I do? I text Fabio and see if he’s free this afternoon some time.. or later… before i go out with Andrea…

He’s free ANY time I could possibly want. Of course he is.

I hit the city centre… my old commute… buy a quick uneccessary top in H&M, visit a colleague in another shop… my heart begins to race with the impending visit to hot barman’s bar. I wonder will he be there? I wonder will he ask me something…

I pass some time chatting with an old colleague who is my dad’s friend, she’s partly moved into my new apartment so I explain the various quirks of my house. “Don’t use the washing machine and the kettle at once. The key to the post box feels like it’s going to break but it’s just like that, keep pushing harder. If you need anything, the old man upstairs is a cunt but pretty obliging if there’s a problem with the plumbing or whatever…”

Badum badum badum… hot barman.

I saunter down the road, smoothing my hair over… wishing I looked better, always gotta look better… I am pretty well rested and put on careful and low-key makeup so I look ok actually. I realise pathetically that I chose this outfit this morning based solely on the fact that I would be having a quick coffee in hot barman’s bar.

I visit the bar. He’s not there..

Ohhhh… the disappointment. I start to shake myself out of it, tell myself, look, this is stupid, it’s a fucking barman who is nice to you, just chill out, be cool, have a coffee and snap out of this weird little obsession…. But then I realise that if I bring my other colleague, Gabrielle, a coffee too, then I can drop the cups back after, and have a whole other chance to see his hotness. This plan is far superior to actually facing reality and getting over my fixation so I seize it with gusto. Hooray!

I order the coffees, bring them past sexy homeless guy whose eyes I avoid as always, blushing furiously, staring straight at my two very stable coffees like I am afraid they will spill… Into my shop…

Gabrielle delighted to see me. We shoot the shit for a while, I accidentally say something like “I absolutely don’t want to work in a shop again and I reckon I can get better money than just shop work in a call centre anyway… uhh I mean, eh… in Ireland that is… it’s different in Ireland…” But it seems ok, or whatever… Gabrielle doesn’t look offended by my put down of her lifelong profession.. outwardly anyway.

I begin to wander mentally back to the bar… mmm…. hope he’s there now… ok Gabrielle, lovely to see you… must dash.

“I’ll leave those back..That was so sweet of you bringing the coffee… thanks…”

Yes… sweeetttt of me…


I carry the cups back and there he is, there he is in his place of work… the epitome of all the men I have ever been attracted to… My ultimate eye candy. Mmmm….

He’s wearing glasses, he looks hotter than ever… Oh my fuck… hot barman… you beautiful creature. He’s so perfectly gorgeous. His hair is fluffy and soft looking. It’s like a child’s hair, he probably doesn’t brush it or put anything in it. I wonder what it smells like. His face… he looks like he’s never woken up with a hangover in his life. I bet if he woke with a hangover he would go for a hike anyway, or eat a sandwich and drink some orange juice. Inside I’m drooling….

He’s so hot..

He sees me coming in all smiles and awkwardness, and leaps forward to take my tray with the cups.

He corners me… in a hazy moment I never want to end, except perhaps for it to escalate.. which it doesn’t… he talks to me about Ireland, how am I doing? Am I back? Sorry to hear that… we miss you here! Your dad told us you moved away… We were sad… Are you around tomorrow? Are you coming back in to the centre before you leave?

I hadn’t planned to but I grin and say maybe, I might… I mentally shift everything around, all my plans are now hot barman-centric. I WILL BE HERE TOMORROW FOR WHATEVER YOU WANT OF ME. I wonder if I come a few minutes before closing time will he ask me out for drinks?

Of course not. But still…. I wish I was staying longer… I wish I had come in sooner, fuck packing my boxes, I should have come here first…

He tells me “if you are around tomorrow we can say goodbye…”


There’s nothing else to say really so I smile and smile and nod and back out of the shop clumsily and smiling and smiling and as I leave and hit the street again, the street I walked down every day… the sadness hits me, wallop, full in the face.

I haven’t been sad about leaving, not until this point. That’s awful.

I’m leaving my sisters, my dad, my stepmom… my home… a pretty cushy job with like no accountability….

I guess I just ignore those bigger emotions because they make me TOO sad to face.

But the first real pang of awfulness, what I’m leaving behind… it hits me now. Hot barman. I will not be seeing hot barman.

A year… a year of obsessing over his lovely face. Every. Fucking. Day…

A year of getting up in the morning and making an effort, solely based on the possibility that I might see him, and he might see me, and the desire for him to not realise what I really look like, without makeup, in normal clothes….

I mope along… filled with regret and sorrow. Imagining if only I had threatened to leave long ago, hot barman would have implored me don’t leave! Stay with me and make beautiful consensual babies, and if anyone says you aren’t pretty enough to be with me and my gorgeous face… well fuck them. I don’t care! I won’t pull an Ashton Kutcher on you in twenty years when I realise how much better I can do…

Oh and I just realised, hot barman wears glasses. SO maybe he either A) doesn’t know how hot he is or B) can’t see how awful my nose looks?

But there’s no hope now.


Sorry. Sorry. Sorry.

It’s gone now, It’s just… old habits baby.

Then I remember, I arranged to meet Fabio later at some time that suits ME.

Really don’t want to see him any more. Decide I will probably make an excuse, fuck it.

I don’t want to straddle his eager, horny body, held in Italian place by a purple sweatervest… and make mechanical motions that feel just… nice… No… I want to run my fingers along skin that excites me, I want to be unsure of how far I can go… I want the tickling fear that maybe I’m misreading… I want hot barman’s eyes to widen as he guesses where I’m going next… I want to excite someone new… I want to taste hot barman’s mouth… all soft and warm and sweet…

But stop, because I really, in truth, don’t want to teach. I want to absorb… I wanna be the sexual padwan… Not bloody likely, but I imagine someone with a French-style arrogance and tremendous comfort in his naked body. Striding around like he owns the place… showing me his trophies… for bowling? No, for lovemaking… Oooh!

Sorry, the Simpsons has poisoned the groundwater… Apparently that guy Marge nearly has an affair with, is my posterboy for “more experienced man”.

Hmph. Well, anyway…

Hot barman is an anomaly. It would be exciting to feel the soft, unworn, the smooth face… the hands that juggle cups and I asked him one time, I plucked up courage and said “don’t you ever break them?” and he melted me with that smile and said “yeah, all the time…” and I thought OH FUCKKKK hot barman you are TOO GOOD LOOKING IT ISN’T FAIR. I will never be looked at by anyone remotely attractive, in the way that I look at hot barman. Anyone who will ever feel that way about me, I probably wouldn’t like. Such is life.


Still… hopeless case or no,

I don’t want Fabio and his easy agreeability.

Hot barman has ruined other men for me…. at least for tonight.

I go home with a heavy heart, have a lovely dinner with my family..

and then pile on the makeup. My littlest sister watches me in awe and approval. She loves makeup and is still young enough that no one disapproves of her smearing glittery purple around her eye area. I feel under scrutiny so I don’t go too crazy with the dark eyes or anything but I think I look pretty fucking good.

On a whim… because I look sexy and hot barman is out of sight and I want,nay, need someone to approve of me…. I text Fabio. Be there in twenty.

Along the way I yo-yo from certainty that I do and certainty that I don’t want to fuck Fabio.

I’m 50-50. I put on red lipstick, Chanel, and feel a little nudge in Fabio’s favour. I MUST seduce somebody now that I’ve bothered doing red lips. It’s tricky to get right….

Then I find myself at Fabio’s door and I’m climbing those bastard five flights of stairs and there he is at the door to the apartment, peering down as I climb undignified and breathless, my makeup resisting poorly to the physical exertion…

I find I’m happy to see him. He hugs me and kisses me vaguely on the side of the mouth. He’s warm and familiar and his presence is soothing. He smells good. It’s not making the sadness worse, it’s a comfort actually. I’m glad I came. He’s a nice guy…

I sit down and he offers me wine, beer, water, coffee…

I take some water. I don’t want to drink too much this evening, I’m just going to see Andrea.. tomorrow I want to be in good condition to play with my sisters and be a decent person around them before disappearing off again.

We talk..I find my tone veering towards lamentations, and sadness.

He’s comforting me.

“No! I’m not explaining myself properly.. I’m HAPPY. I can’t WAIT to move to Ireland… I’m just… you know, I didn’t think how sad I’d be to leave….. eh,my family…”

He reassures me I’ll see them soon again..

I become so bored of this conversation because obviously I’m not thinking of family right now but hot barman and his fluffy head of hair and 3 or 4 years younger than me, innocent looks. And those glasses and how they suited him…. and his smile…

So I begin to stroke Fabio’s leg because I’m bored of my own whining, and I feel in the vicinity, and he’s rock hard, and that endears him to me. Ah Fabio… you know, he’s actually a very good looking guy. I was whining about him and my friend asked to see a photo, so I showed her his facebook. “Abby, he’s HOT!” she said. I pooh-poohed it. No, that’s just a flattering picture. Look at this one…

“He’s hot! You’re being ridiculous! He sounds nice.. I don’t know why you’re so hard on him..”

Mmmh… whatever. He’s just annoying.

It’s only beecause he’s nice to me, probably. I’m a sucker for feeling insecure and unwanted. Rejection baby! I’m all about the rejection…

But I like that he’s so hard now. It’s like.. he’s sitting here with a massive erection and yet he’s got an arm around me and he’s trying to be nice and listen and he hasn’t made a single move… he’s being respectful… he’s a nice guy, and I’m feeling a bit low… so it works for me. It’s not like I’m not horny… I’m ALWAYS ready to go…

I pounce.

It’s surprisingly enjoyable. He’s a good fuck, really. It doesn’t last very long, but I don’t have very long before I have to meet Andrea. He murmers in my ear “did you miss this?”

And I don’t know does he mean his dick, or sex, or what, I say yeah of course but inside I giggle, and think…

Oh FABIO, we haven’t had sex in 2 months… I’ve fucked like 3 other guys in that time.

And that’s a sobering thought. At this rate, I will… no it doesn’t bear thinking about.

I get dressed and we hug and kiss goodbye. See you next time…

Well, that’s a nice arrangement to have. A man in every port…

I meet Andrea and I’m all beaming with after-sex and slutty pride. She’s with a friend I don’t know, and we hit a nice bar and have some beers. I repeat, it’s an early night for me, got to be bright eyed and bushy tailed tomorrow. Plus I’ve already got laid, no motivation for me to stay out and get wasted…

But two beers later and I accept a jagerbomb. And another. Then Andrea is tired and wants to call it a night. We say our goodbyes. I would have liked to stay a little longer but I’m glad, I’ll be in bed tucked up by 3am… tomorrow is another day, and one I will be able to use and take advantage of and… carpe fucking diem!

Goodbye! Andrea has moved house so we are no longer on a taxi route together. Her friend lives in a third, other direction. We hug. Goodbye! Goodbye! Come visit me in Ireland! BOTH OF YOU! YAAAYYY!

I’m a little drunk, but not too much. I’m walking up to the taxi rank. I’m about two blocks away when I hear my name. ABBY! ABBY!

Odd. I turn to find Bumchum and a friend of his I know vaguely.

Shit. I never told him I was leaving the country. What a jerk… I’ve actually been avoiding him online, I have him blocked on facebook so he can’t see if I’m online to chat to me. Otherwise he would always chat and invite me out. I realise it looks bad, I left the country without telling anyone….

He invites me for a beer..

I feel like if I say no, it’s just admitting I don’t like him because I have made excuses every time he asked me to come out for the past four months…. And if we are no longer friends, what’s to stop him from telling everyone about the night he gave me a drunken prostate exam?

I agree to ONE BEER!

One fucking beer…

We hit some underground bar I’ve never seen before with loud music and dancing.

While his friend is talking to someone else, he tells me, “look, I know I haven’t see you much since that other night… all I wanted to say is it’s no big deal, don’t be weirded out by it, I don’t think it was a big deal, obviously for me it was great because you’re really hot, but I’m not going to try anything else…”

I blush and thank him for calling me hot.

“NO it’s not a compliment, you just are. You’re very sexy. I’m not coming onto you, I’m not trying… you know? Just wanted to say that because it’s a pity, I would have liked you to come out more, you’re good fun, like…”

I tell him, to be perfectly honest (I always say this when I am about to lie particularly emphatically) the only reason I didn’t hang out with him after that was that I was trying to avoid husband and I was afraid of bumping into him as we have a lot of friends in common and being with the same friends just reminded me of that part of my life…

Makes sense, makes sense… I understand. Ok great…

Fun party party!

I forget all about my vow to go home early. I hit the bar and decide the barman here is insanely hot. I begin swaying at him, fixing him with my drunken gaze, convinced of my atractivity because of bumchum’s compliments. Grrrrr barman… I must have a hot barman tonight! I am staring at barman, smiling. I catch his eye a few times and he smiles back warmly.

But then I think I overdo it.

I think I may just be STARING at him with an insane leering grin. He stops smiling back and moves to a different part of the bar. A female bartender moves into place in front of me. Oh. Oh well. Shit.

Well fuck it.

I am in prowl mode. I have some more jagerbombs.

I am dancing now.

I am having a great time.

I rock this party.


It’s daylight. I’m in a car, in the backseat with a guy. There is a guy in front driving. They are telling me they are dropping me at the bus stop. What? There are no busses. Taxi. Needs a taxi me.

No, it’s daytime. It’s 7.30am.

No it can’t be, it’s NIGHT TIME.

The car stops. Why aren’t you bringing me home? Where are we?

The guy in the back shakes his head. I’m not getting out, he says.

The driver gets out and helps me lurch out of the car.

He tells me what bus to get, and waits with me in an awkward silence while I try to figure out, was I kissing one of these guys? Was it not the guy in the backseat? I think I kissed him… oh wow I must have been drunk, I can’t remember which guy I kissed. I wonder.. it’s odd I can’t tell from the smell. I mean, I smell like another person, but I can’t tell which person it is.

I have foreign saliva mixing with my morning breath, but whose saliva? I wonder have I misjudged and is it the driver I was kissing, maybe I made a big faus pas here… they seem to look really alike but then I’m awfully drunk still.

I am too hung over to think about it now, I have to get a bus…. I’m sure I’ll remember later.

He explains about the bus and I KNOW of course I know how to get the bus. He offers bus fare. Ugh no, I have a ticket. It feels incredibly patronising, being offered bus fare… I’m not sure why… there’s a hint of the sordid but I can’t put my finger on it…

Bye now…

But he waits til the bus comes, pretty much imediately. I board the bus full of morning daytime people and feel pasty and drawn and ashamed and smelly.

I make it in the door of my dad’s house with a good deal of key fumbling.

I lie down on the mattress which thankfully has been moved to the downstairs study for the occasion of my going out at the weekend, so I don’t have to wake anyone up.

I sleep.

And wake at midday. Hung.. over… to… shit.

I feel so bad and worse because it’s my last day and I need to be nice and hang out with my neglected sisters. I’m sorry… I have coffee. My sisters make me coffee and bring me fizzy water and biscuits and I croak out my thanks and apologies. I smell awful.

I am hung over for hours…

Eventually I muster the mental fortitude to have a shower, which helps considerably.

I spend some time forcing every malignant fibre of my being to be a good sister, I play cards while my brain screams NOOOOOO STOP THIS INSANITY MUST BE ALONE IN A DARK ROOM. I plough through the day pretending to be ok, but doing a terrible job of it.

And I draw pictures with my sister and listen to her little gurgling voice grate in my head and nod and say silly things and all the while there is a battle raging, a rebellion doomed to die… a fight for last night’s memories.

My sisters are finally leaving, going to a birthday party and a friend’s house.

I am alone in the house. I hit the internet and facebook while the silence wails at me like tinitis for beginners

I can’t go to say goodbye to hot barman. I’m feeling too rough to leave the house today, also I look like a hobo’s arsehole.

Bumchum is online. I wonder… I wonder if I just ASK bumchum, he’ll tell me what happened. I wonder did I kiss bumchum? Is that why I smell different?

Maybe he knows those guys.. Maybe he’ll say, “oh you went off with the taller one of the guys” or “oh you went back to a party with my friends and you kissed the slightly shorter one”

I am sure he will just tell me I was good and nothing bad happened, and I am just being drunk and hungover and maybe I was a bit pissed but it’s all ok. This is what happens normally, I work it up to a big deal when really I was just a bit drunk and lairy. I remember staring at the barman… that’s pretty embarassing.

So I ask bumchum.

Hey, what happened last night, did we go back to a party or something?

And he tells me two of his friends were bringing me back to my place, I got a lift.

Yeah but what did we do before that?

He says we were at a club, don’t you remember?

Yeah but that ended at 4 or 5… what happened next?

You got a lift home…

YEAH at 7.30 am…

I’m confused. I think I remember being at a party or soemthig. I don’t remember who was there, but I think those guys were, yeah.

He offers to ask them.

No… too embarassing! My friend wants to know… argh no don’t ask that!

But actually… could you maybe just ask, “what happened last night with my friend” or something. So they don’t know it’s me asking, like.

Sure, he says. One of them is online now…

And I wait.

I wait patiently, a little nervous, for the reassurance that everything was ok and nothing was as bad as it seemed and it was just a hangover making me paranoid.

But the reply was not reassuring.

The reply was not going to make it better.

The reply said that I didn’t know which guy I had kissed because I had kissed both of them, and that I hadn’t just kissed both of them but I had slept with both of them… together… that’s right, I had a freaking threesome and I have no idea whose idea it was but as I read the paragraph over and over on facebook, little flashes of confirmation appeared in my memory. Pictures, images, proof… nothing concrete, but memories… the memories of a very drunk person. Me naked, me saying “sure why not? I’m up for anything…”

Sitting in the back of the car, with the two guys up front and feeling the backs of both of their necks… maybe I started it. Maybe it was all my idea, and I started it…

But I had a threesome.

I had a threesome with two guys, and I can’t remember it properly, and I can’t tell if I liked it, and I can’t even FEEL it because I had already had quite a fierce fuck with Fabio so I was bound to be a bit tender, and as to.. other aspects of a threesome… well, I can neither confirm nor deny that something… happened there. I don’t fucking KNOW.

And I had that knowledge to contend with, me, hung over, red eyed, swollen faced, and I sat with a brain like a rotten sponge, wishing for sleep but too traumatised to even lie down.

And I typed one reply to bumchum, one… one last gamble, one last attempt to make things ok, as my mind raced to try to come to terms with something I could barely comprehend… that I had sex and don’t remember it. That is, seriously, a low I have never hit before…….

So I ask, and I don’t really want to know…

Was I at least… any good? Did they say?

Bumchum didn’t judge me. Bumchum has been friend-zoned and bumchum seems ok with it. Anyway, he got a blow job from a chick on the bus home while her friend kissed his neck. It puts us on a par, except I’m a girl… and I can do better…

But Ahhh, the night bus.

Funny how Italy just got crazy and gang-bang-happy as I’m leaving.

But he said, yes, I was good… They said I gave quite a performance… I was a star…

And the sad thing is, after all that…

The pride in a job well done, almost entirely eclipses the shame of a job I have no recollection of doing..

But… I AM ashamed. I am ashamed not because I had a threesome, but because I had one without remembering it. I can’t TELL if I was the instigator. If I was… then fair enough. I could laugh and think, well, there you go, I’m a sex-crazed son of a gun, it was bound to happen sooner or later. In fairness I am obsessed with sex and have never come across a man who could keep up with me. Briefly, husband gave me a run for my money… but it was of course short-term.

Two guys is not a bad idea, in that sense…

But I don’t know if that was my idea. I don’t know if I was so drunk I didn’t even know what was going on, I don’t know if, say, I only thought I had been with one but was so pissed I couldn’t tell the next one was a different dude.

THAT is what bothers me, That is what scares me.

I could have been raped, and I have no idea… Well, I mean… I remember lying on a bed and being quite into it, whatever was going on, but still… I was too drunk. I shouldn’t have been that drunk. I might even have been spiked, but that seems like an excuse… I could easily have been that drunk…

But it’s dangerous and it’s bad. Obviously no harm done, because I don’t have any horrendous memories and I am missing two condoms from my handbag selection so I guess it’s ok…

But I really, honestly, don’t want to get like that again.

I’m a little bit stunned after that night…

In a sense, I feel like I’ve hit rock bottom. With my drinking. Not exactly with my sex… behaviour… because I will always be doing more slutty things than is generally accepted, because I’m always fucking horny. I spend so much time thinking about sex, watching men and thinking about fucking them.

On the flight over, I mentally undressed and straddled the pilot, a male air steward, three passengers, a guy in a luminous jacket who waved the plane in (the plane we were going to board, before it had pulled into the terminal) and the guy who checked my passport and the barman selling expensive coffee in the duty free area. That’s not even mentioning the man who sat accross from me on the aircoach on the way to the airport… and then even the asshole ticket inspector on the train, I was wishing I had worn makeup and brushed my hair because he was kind of hot in an arrogant asshole kind of way. I imagined growling at him “are you sure I can’t change your mind about letting me sit in first class?” while prying my legs open a little…. and him pulling out his dick and saying “I’m going to have to write you out a fine… with my cock” or something…

Hmm… it’s a work in progress…. rage got in the way of a proper script… but this is  how my mind deals with all the men I come across in every day life. It’s constantly running 1970s porn dialogues while outwardly I smile as coyly as my slutty demeanour can manage.

I am always horny, I’m always watching men, they arouse me easily, with tiny non-erotic actions…

I watch them doing their jobs, menial or unchallenging they may be, but they suggest the tip of an iceberg of a world totally alien to me. Airline employees… with security clearance… able to open doors with a swipe card, doors I will never see behind. Secret codes and signals, unknown worlds on walkie talkies… engineers… oh my god engineers… reading data from the airplane…. anything… any thing a man does, his casual behaviour, when he doesn’t know he’s being watched… the stance, full of manly muscular power, a body capable of slamming me up against walls and pulling my head back just a little roughly… at ease while he works, but it’s all just under his clothes, his uniform, waiting to be called to action.

I fucking LOVE men.

I love them.

Mmmm men.

But the drinking… the drinking seems to be a problem.

I’m not so quick to say I’m an alcoholic as I have been to say I’m a sexaholic. I honestly don’t think about drink as much as sex, or with as much gusto… the thought of a drink right now, for instance, doesn’t excite me or interest me. It’s the fun of drinking with people. It’s the overcoming my terrible awkwardness… it’s finding a reason to get people to hang out together for extended periods, all dressed up…

I’d honestly be happy hanging out with people with no drink, so of course I’m not an “addict”.

But I definitely, certainly, have a drink problem. Be it addiction or just, I can’t handle my drink.

I have a problem.

And I want to deal with that.

And I’ve just… moved… back… to Ireland.


Good luck with that…

And Saturday is ST PATRICKS DAY.


Oh baby..

I’ll let you know how I get on.

(Of course this is about a week old now, but I will leave it a bit before thrusting my latest misadventure down your gullets… otherwise my whole “ahh never drink again so much shame” thing just seems melodramatic and like I never meant it at all… I did mean it, I’m just… a terrible, incorrigible woman.)

4 responses to “A new low: Leaving Italy with a bang, not a whimper.

  1. oooh danger zone..
    I been there when I was around 21 years old. My father came after a night of binge drinking and uncontrollable crying and violence. He got me and got me ‘sober’ (I still drink but not like I did back then…).
    I hear ya.
    It’s fun (sort of) while it happens but the regret holds more impact than the party.
    Just sayin’ I can relate.
    No advice except, when it’s time to slow it down you’ll know and when you’re really ready you will find a solution or at least an alternative.
    Some people are never ready.
    It’s all about choice really.
    I love reading your blog because although I didn’t party as hard as you I can still relate in a small way; I partied and also got myself into some situations that made me go “Ugh”. It reminds me how far I have come.
    I am proud of those days believe it or not. It is a part of me and that part still holds a little spot inside…and I learned from it too. :D

    Maybe one day I will tell you about the time when my gf and I went into the local posh hotel washrooms, chugged back a tallboy of beer each, climbed the fire escape, smoked a fat joint and then climbed back down. We are talking about a hotel that the Queen of England used to stay at when she visited our city…
    Yeah baby, those were the days. lol
    (ok I guess that’s the story…so there’s no ‘one day’ going to happen and it’s definitely one of my more tame moments…but really it doesn’t get much worse either…)

    Hugs and glad to get your post (and fun to share my silly story)

    • Thanks Val….
      I guess it’s the first time I’ve really looked at it as an actual problem. I need to get a grip on the drinking, and I know I haven’t a hope of doing so until I really honestly don’t want to drink like that any more… When I was younger I used to think it was impressive, getting into wild ridiculous predicaments, and I would skip the shame and go right on to boasting… but now it’s just embarassing… So I’d like to stop, but then there are nights that are just perfect and fun and lovely, like your posh hotel ;) … and I wouldn’t want to give up those stories for anything! What is a tallboy by the way?
      Anyway it’s late here in Dublin, good night my Canadian friend!

  2. I totally hear ya.
    For me it just got to a point to where I just needed to learn when my limit was up. Even now I stilllll have a hard time stopping when I am having a good time. It’s like a super hard but do-able conscious decision that took me years to ‘get’.

    Those are extra large cans of beer; almost like a can and a half.
    Totally hick-ville, cowboy beers. Completely not cool to me now as I consider myself a little bit of a beer snob. Especially a really good yummy miro-brew.
    Local beer here is absolutely stunning!
    It is early in the evening for me but late enough I am going to snuggle up with my cat and a show. (got the house to myself dontcha know!)

    Hugs to you my sweet Irish compadre :)

    • A beer snob, eh, I have the utmost respect and awe for your kind! I’m a terrible Irishwoman… I have no clue about beer. It all tastes the same to me. Every time I am in the offo (that’s some Irish slang for you in exchange for “tallboy”, it means off licence as in liquor store…FYI) I have to pretend to scrutinise the beers like I’m actually making a decision, but eventually just go by price or alcohol volume, whichever is the best low-high combination on offer!
      Anyhoo, I am on antibiotics now so it is a FORCED hiatus from drinking, looking forward to a very civilised weekend sans booze.. YAY!
      Hugs and happy weekend to ya! :)

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