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What goes In, will come Out.

Much like the cliched saying, "what goes around, comes around", the topic for today's (writing+gossip) writssip, holds some truth to our lives, in big and small ways. If you introspect a little, I have no doubt that you will find examples from your day to day lives that would resonate with the heading! While you do that, let me share with you an interesting, and a bit embarrassing evening that I had recently, and which solidified the above saying.

I am a people’s person, at least at work, or if a situation needs me to be. On any other occasion I am the happiest if left alone. I have gone for dinners alone, to the movies alone, for shopping alone, let’s just say I am pretty independent not just financially but also pretty much emotionally. I adore my own company. I love talking to myself, and not just in my head. The raised eyebrows don’t bother me anymore. My husband is pretty much used to my sermons to the invisible too, after 9 years of being with me, and doesn’t bother me with his curiosity anymore. May be silently even finds it adorable.

After a fourteen hours flight and seventeen hours shift, I checked in at the Pullmans hotel near the infamous Melbourne Cricket Ground. It was early morning, and this beautiful calm city was in its usual chilly self. Now thinking about it, I might have been to Melbourne atleast fifteen times in ten years spread across different seasons. Each visit have been atleast thirty hours stay, and during all these stays I have not once felt the scorching sun on my face! Not to say that Mel is always gloomy like London (don’t even get me started on the soul shattering weather of this city), the sun does show up generously but it glints in a way that makes you feel that life is good, and also carry a light weight jacket everytime you head out. That morning was shyly windy, and I was cursing myself for not wearing the cardigan underneath my uniform blazer. Once inside the reception area, the entire crew of twenty four huddled in and around the couch, the suitcases and the receptionist. I felt warm and cozy. I also had to complete a couple of pending flight reports and I got busy with it, as the rest of the crew started checking in one by one. It took around twelve to fifteen minutes for the crowd to disperse and then I went to the counter. Two other crew from the economy cabin were still at the counter with their phones, scanning a QR code. I could have just avoided a whole new conversation but I was still in uniform and the ‘people’s person’ inside me was still awake, tired though. Apparently, scanning the QR code makes one a member of the hotel with a complimentary bottle of wine. Not much of a wine drinker but who was I to deny a free bottle of wine. The middle class in me approved of the decision to hoard something that I didnt even enjoy. Also, it was too early to drink. However it was also a thirty eight hours layover.

I slept till late afternoon. Almost seven hours. Less than my expectation, especially after being awake for almost 20 hours. But I told myself that if I planned the rest of the night well and somehow managed to stay awake till morning, and then sleep, I should be able to get a good ten hours sleep at least, before the wake up call. So I started by freshening up, have a cup of tea, sent a couple of texts to mom and dad, and then browsed through the room service menu.

Developed countries have excelled in many things but hospitality is definitely not one of them. A twenty four hours room service menu doesn’t take a lot but apparently with countries that are high up in the development index, it surely is one impossible task. I am guessing that their lack of being subjected to colonialism makes them that way. On the other hand countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, even African countries have excellent levels of hospitality, thanks to their past of bowing down to their colonialists. Anyway, back to my evening. The full range of room service menu was available till 10pm. Afterwards there was only an extremely stringent number of options were available. Now if I was a customer with a normal 9-5 routine, this would have worked perfectly for me, but that wasn’t the case. The night was my day and I needed access to food. It was 9.45pm by the time I finished my reports. Perfect time to open that free bottle of wine. Some fries, a good movie to watch in Netflix, and I will be having the best layover soon. All I had to do was order for the fries and the dinner within the next fifteen minutes. I was used to eating cold food so as long as I had the food of my choice.

The bell rang after about 45 mins. I was already down with a few sips of the chilled wine. I opened the door and a younger guy, perhaps in his early 20s was standing outside holding a big tray of food and a bill for me to sign. He asked my permission to keep the tray inside my room while I signed the bill. He left with a polite goodnight, and some whiff of an expensive smelling perfume. White people! I settled down with my glass of wine and opened the covered plate of French fries. Freshly fried, chunky, with dips. For someone who liked MCDs French fries, this felt like an upgrade. I took one, dipped it in the sour cream and took a generous bite. Just perfect. I topped myself up generously with the wine. The bottle was now half empty, and my brain was almost full. Full of dopamine and serotonin. I was happily chatting away with every Neena, Lila, and Sheila on my watsapp list. I never made it to the movie as I was busy sharing my wisdom with everyone. The kind of wisdom that comes after a few drinks. To be fair, they asked for it. Lucky for me, the room had a table clock that was also a radio and a bluetooth speaker. What else could I ask for to make this evening better! I connected it to my phone and played my Spotify list. I recently started listening to Anuv Jain, so I kept playing his song husn in loop for a while, and then moved to Sona Mohapatra, Ben E King, Pink, and Tom Odell. I was having the time of my life. Only that at some point the wine reached till my neck! And this is where things got a little crazy.

I started drinking lots of water. The wine was now slowed down. I had to shake off the feeling of getting drunk. I am 33, I can’t be feeling drunk, I told myself. People in their early 20s get drunk, like the room service boy. The last time I got drunk I was about 22 years old, and I have grown up since then, I added to myself. I can’t be throwing up like a teenager or a 22 year old again! All these self talk did not have much impact on my body, for my mouth was salivating and it wasn’t associated with hunger and food. You my reader, if you have ever thrown up after not understanding your body’s limit to process alcohol and kept drinking, then you know my ordeal here.

I quietly walked to the washroom, and gargled with water. I splashed some water on face too. I took my time to wipe myself dry and then slowly walked back to my drinking corner. I couldn’t stand the sight of the bottle at this time. I put the half finished glass and the bottle away. Drank a couple more glasses of water. But it only seemed to make things worse inside. I ran back inside the washroom, and left the tap open as my body decided to throw back out every single drop of alcohol and food that I put inside of me for the past hour or so. Ten or may be fifteen minutes later, I finally felt that my stomach was absolutely empty and that there was nothing else that could come out of it. Other than maybe some burps. Empty stinky burps. Needless to say I was embarrassed by my juvenile attempt to finish one whole bottle of wine in one evening all by myself. Anyway, what is done is done. I was gonna own up to it like an adult and get my shit together before calling it a night. A night well spent…would be pushing it. No night spent well ends in the washroom, unless.  I brushed my teeth like there was no tomorrow. I gargled. Took a small wash. Composed myself and looked in the mirror, and until I was convinced that I didn’t look like a drunk anymore I kept splashing water on my face. After ten minutes or so, my eyes were still red. There wasn’t much apetite left but like a responsible adult I had to feed my empty stomach with something substantial other than the fries.

I had two slices of my dinner, drank another couple of glasses of water and then called my husband to give him some layover gossip of myself getting drunk alone.

So, in conclusion, other than the just the physical realms of our existence and our actions, whatever goes inside of our minds and hearts, eventually finds a way to come out to the world. Not to drink one whole bottle of wine by myself, was the second piece of conclusion that I  slept with that night.

If you liked reading my mini stories, please share your email. I solemnly promise you to not spam it with anything other than more mini stories.

This Pullmans is two minutes walk to the Melbourne Cricket Ground

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