I am not an Aussie.
I cannot even try to pretend I am an Aussie.
When I try to be an Aussie, bad things happen … like shots of Jager getting poured directly from the bottle into my mouth.
As soon as I got off the bus from Lisboa in Lagos, I could feel the electricity in the air. It was a beautiful evening, a gentle breeze blew in from the Atlantic and the white and tile homes of the little city looked magnificent as the sun began to creep lower into the horizon.
I met my first Aussie outside the bus station. He worked for the hostel I was staying at, The Monkey House, and he arrived on bike, trying to get people to come and stay the night there. I followed him to my new home and along the way he broke down where I needed to go to party.
“First, you go to Three Monkeys, then after that, you hit up DC and Red Eye, then after that, you go to the club, then after that, you go to the beach.”
I checked into The Monkey House, where the cutest little Portuguese cat ever, the hostel cat (!), decided to be my friend. She hung out with me while I changed and got ready to go explore the town (AKA grab dinner, see the Atlantic Ocean and check out the bar scene now that my sick feeling had vanished).
The only bar I made it to that night was Three Monkeys. I sat there for hours. I hadn’t meant to. I was just going in for the happy hour (2 for 1 cocktails) and to cash in the Monkey Money I received, which entitled me to one free drink.
The party somehow started when I sat at the computer in the bar, checking my e-mail.
“Heya,” the bartender (an Aussie) said. “Here’s a shot.”
I couldn’t say no.
Then, after I moved to the bar, there was another. And another. And another.
By nightfall, the bar was packed with Aussies, all hopping (literally) around, jumping up and down to the music and flipping their caps up so you could read clearly what the underside of the brims said “Party Much?”
Clearly, I did not.
I don’t think it was even midnight when I decided to head home to the hostel and my hostel cat. And by head home, I mean slightly weave.
The next morning … well … it was not the best morning of my trip. But, it could have been worse. I could have stayed out, gone to DC and Red Eye and the club and the beach. Right.
But, I had things to cross off my bucket list. Like swimming on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.