Strawberry daiquiri wine coolers, Deuce Bigalow, Waikiki. That, in a nutshell, is the story of my first drinking experience.
It gets better. It was my honeymoon.
And it was only two weeks before my 21st birthday. I had yet to have an alcoholic drink in my life. I thought for sure I'd at least have a sip of champagne at our wedding, or a glass of wine with dinner, but we were so busy that we barely sat to eat. I didn't even get seconds of the prime rib, and I really wanted seconds of the prime rib.
I didn't eat or drink a single thing the day of our wedding that I chose for myself. So when the photographer handed me the champagne flute full of sparkling cider for our wedding toast, my heart sank and I felt like a patronized child. But I didn't want to make a scene, so I smiled and I held that cider high as each successive toaster offered congratulations. I still don't know who made the call that day to keep our glasses "dry". I was happy, and I toasted that happiness regardless of what was in the glass.
But on our honeymoon, in Waikiki, at some point in our walk around the block near our hotel, money-dance cash burning holes in our pockets, I convinced E to step into an ABC store and buy me something alcoholic and fruity that wouldn't taste super gross. He'd been 21 for all of a month and a half, so as the older and wiser half of our duo, as the legal half, he did the buying while I hung out behind a display of chips and hoped nobody would ask if he was buying me booze.
We endured snickers from people in the hotel as we'd get off the elevator together; it didn't help that we were staying in the same low-budget hotel as a high school band at a music competition. Most people thought we were a wayward teenage couple that snuck away from the group. Our room was a tiny end-of-the-tower space with a giant cutout of square footage occupied by an emergency stairwell. The hotel wasn't terrible, but it was old and cheap, and we should have asked for another room without the stairwell in it. We just didn't know any better. And we made do. We were happy to share the space with each other, happy to have somewhere to be.
For most of the week, The Bloodhound Gang's song "The Bad Touch" played on repeat from the one radio station we could get on the tiny clock radio. We played Gin Rummy for sunflower seeds on the bed and laughed about how small the bathroom was. One afternoon when he fell asleep I decided to watch a pay-per-view movie to pass the time. The selections were slim, so I went with Deuce Bigalow. As I watched, I snacked. And I got thirsty. We were out of soda, so I started to drink a wine cooler from the pack he'd bought me. As wine coolers are wont to do, these went down easy. Like Kool Aid easy. I just kept laying there, laughing and snacking and wine coolering while he slept until the movie was over and it was time to get up and walk to dinner. It was hot. I was so thirsty. I drank quite a few.
E asked something about getting ready and I said "sure, yeah."
I got up, and then I fell right back down. Right on the carpet, like I had to hold on to it or (to quote something I read on Pinterest recently) I was going to fall off the world.
We walked to dinner after that, E holding me up so I could get there, mostly. But I got my act together. Since I was not 21 yet, I didn't bother taking my ID with me to restaurants. I wasn't going to even attempt to order anything. The place we went was a bar and grill, but we were sitting in the grill half. The host stopped us at the door and asked to see our IDs. E produced his, and I let him know that I didn't have mine since I wasn't 21.
He gave E a stern look, then looked me up and down. "You make sure she doesn't order any alcohol tonight."
For the next few weeks I'm writing in response to prompts from The Scintilla Project. Check it out.
Tell a story about a time you got drunk before you were legally able to do so.