I’VE always considered drinking as a vice “strictly for the boys” only way back in college. In fact, the hardest drink I’ve ever taken was Coolers (I only learned a few years later that it was only used as a chaser for hard drinks).
The night before our graduation from college, we decided to have some sort of a despedida party. Okay, as this was to be our last night together, we booked no arguments and decided to have our first real night out.
With five boys and three other girl classmates, we trooped to a local bar in town. The boys ordered Red Horse and simple Pale Pilsen for us girls. Like me, my two girl companions Jeb and Rose were also first-timers and that was to be our baptismal drink, sort of a welcome to the adult world.
The night started well. I was however unprepared for the bitter taste my first sip of beer gave me. “Yuks, whatever prompt people from buying this high-priced stuff with such an unpleasant taste,” I muttered but my pride prodded me to swallow it.
Eventually, my taste buds seemed to adjust to the bitter taste. One swig was followed by another until by the time midnight came around, all of us were quite tipsy.
The first stuff we worked on was the beer. We even tried different brands of beer then we moved on the liquor.
Then it was on to the next class of drinks — a mixture of Tanduay, beer and coke (they call it “birtancok”) poured in a big pitcher and passed around. Not one of us girls liked it. Some of the boys didn’t, either.
My head was getting lighter and the group became noisier as the night wore on. By the time midnight came around, we have consumed quite a lot as evidenced by the empty bottles rolling under our table, and swapped more stories than we ever did for the whole year. Some of the boys played billiard, sang song from a videoke machine, while the rest of us shared memories and plans for the future.
It turned out to be like a huge drinking Olympics, where everyone seemed to be contesting with each other in drinking. By 2 a.m., we had just about everything gone. Even the big pitcher of “Birtankok” we snubbed earlier was empty.
Throughout the night, my classmates had already made several trips to the comfort room but I managed to hold it, not until the time when the urge was too strong.
Stumbling hazily towards the direction the waitress pointed.
“Ladies’ comfort room is at the right side,” I recited what the waitress told me while trying to identify where the right side was.
Seeing a door on the right side, I opened it stepped into the dimly lit room. Finding no bowl anywhere, I sat down on the floor and relieved myself from all the beer and mixed drink I consumed, staring groggily at the yellowish flood on the tiles.
Finally relieved, I staggered to get up and my bleary gaze landed on something which shocked me. For there, in both corners of the small room and hidden beneath untidy piles of clothes were two untidy beds. There was a small drawer with more clothes strewn about. Only then did I realize that I had mistaken the bedroom of the waitresses and pissed on the floor.
That was the last time I stepped in or even passed by that bar again, afraid to be recognized.
By the way, I joined the graduation rites the following day still groggy and almost made a scene when I almost stumbled while marching to the stage to claim my hard-earned diploma