New Year’s Eve With Adam and Eve
It was the 30th of December; 2018 would soon transition to 2019. I was at a hostel on Lombok, Indonesia – away from the crowds who had anticipated that party capitals like Gili Trawangan and Canggu would deliver their goods. I had expectations of my night: tripping on shrooms with short-term friends.
Approaching us was an Australian man with blonde locks, a dark moustache and a burgundy Deus singlet. As he joined us, I recalled the day when we hostel stayers had assembled on a tall peak of Seger Beach, gazing at the long line of horizon, catching a glimpse of a weaker sunset. The Deus hipster swiftly clasped his Hercules arms onto the ground and shook it. Since he stood behind us and looked as if he was capable of such a thing, I presumed he had abilities.
Unfortunately, it was another earthquake, something we had all become accustomed to.
“I’ll do mushrooms with ya,” said the Deus hipster to a Korean man.
“Could you get me a pack too?” I asked.
The Korean got hold of the goods. He and the hostel receptionist sat by the pool tripping balls. While the Korean would laugh lightly, the receptionist found humour in everything he laid eyes on, seeing visuals, such as a string of lamp bulbs hanging down from one end to the other looking like the Joker.
Due to our change of mood, the Deus hipster and I did not end up eating the fungus baked in omelette (well, I skipped the intake because he decided not to trip, and he was cute).
The shrooms’ midnight effect transformed the hostel into Bali’s notorious Kerobokan prison. The Korean wandered to every nook and cranny of the building in fear, never finding the ease of a liberating escape. Both he and the receptionist were chased by an unknown character. Two-and-a-half packs each is a lot for human consumption.
On New Year’s Eve, we had some longboarding fun. As day became night, we headed from surf spot to hostel. Relying on alcohol to provide our fun, we played drinking games that promoted curiosity about each stranger’s intimate stories. I rank this moment high, because we exchanged temporary common ground, humour and rice wine.
Midnight was nearly there, so we hasted up and set ourselves in motion. The urgency made me forget my ugly wig – the helmet. We were told the party was on Seger Beach. I promised myself, and others, that I would drive slowly, not like a maniac. We could not help but take off at a fast speed in the dark, overtaking each other countless times. I would never change the adrenaline for anything. I needed the thrill.
There we were, at a lousy beach party. A few other attendees were having a dull time judging by the looks of their faces, because I, who stomped up and down, was the most entertaining thing to watch. I disliked the pressure the stomping gave my infected urinal canal; my adrenaline caused me to urinate on myself. Luckily, Indonesia’s got us covered with bum gums to spray on garments for an extended stain, and the warmth of the country makes cotton dry instantly.
“This is boring. Let’s go to Bus Bar. That’s where the party is,” said a voice.
“No,” I said firmly as I looked to my surroundings of 20 acquaintances. “We brought the party.”
We stayed and sent out sky lanterns to the universe. Three reached the fireworks and the stars after, meaning three lucky souls might have their wishes fulfilled. The remaining lanterns lay on the sand, deformed and miserable.
“What did you wish for?” I asked a newly acquainted man.
He wished to find love in 2019 – also his tactic for coming onto me. I wished for him to erase his mind of pickup lines for the coming year so that he may find love, or at least sex. His lantern looked useless on the beach as I cast my eyeballs on it.
“I work in tech,” he responded to my career question, and “I’m from Chicago,” to my origin question. I was borderline grilling him, borderline coming onto him. He chose to accompany me in the company of 20 others. This is how attraction works.
“Why are you travelling?” he asked.
“I don’t know.”
“Is it for self-discovery? People think travelling will help them find themselves, but trust me, life doesn’t work like that.”
He said it with such confidence. He was wrong. Was he right?
Why was I travelling?
We moved from one bar to another. The last destination was the spot for alcoholics. I could not imagine what a sight it must have been for a person in sobriety. People grinding each other in large crowds and narrow space and French kissing aggressively on the dance floor. I yearned to dance to disco, but we danced to trap.
I grooved the heck out of my soul until salty H2O dripped from my forehead. The flickering lights would switch from red to green. In my drunkenness, I could still see men prey on the preyed upon when the lights transitioned to red. Red – salivating man here. Green. Red – salivating man there. Green. Red. Chicago. I went up to him.
“Skinny dip!” I said to him and into four other ears.
Red Chicago and I darted off. As I looked back, I noticed we led our flock of 20. Red Chicago had some tacky tattoos: one of a womanly figure that symbolises temptation. He was my Adam and I was his Eve. For the night. And on towards the beach we stomped.
In nudity, we bathed in grimy water. Disregarding the pollution, we were travellers who needed the thrill, so we hopped on parked mini fishing boats playing wild sea animals. Due to our drunkenness, we tipped them over and sank them.
Things looked worse at the bar. Face collisions. Local beach boys chasing Western tail. Next thing I knew, my face collided with Red Chicago. I could feel temptation layer itself under my skin.
“You are a gorgeous woman,” said a female voice as I exited the bar. “You can have any guy you want here. Don’t go back with him.”
Lines were blurred. I let myself act like how one would in Bali, the horny island. Lombok, where I was, was the next island over.
Red Chicago and I successfully drunk-drove back to the hostel. Fast-paced, we stomped straight to his air-conditioned dormitory. It seemed we had the room to ourselves, so we jumped under the sheets. Afterwards, we scanned the surrounds more thoroughly and noticed a male shape in a difficult corner. So round two was to be in the shower. Out of respect.
I woke up the next morning after having minimal sleep, feeling refreshed. My vision was clearer. My head felt lighter. I had avocado on toast, surfed, saw ‘The Post (2017)’ and flew home to Europe, feeling wonderful.
I was naive to think sex after two months of celibacy could cause this relief. My satisfaction was resulted by a well-fed ego of which I acted upon and got all the supplies my hands could clasp onto the prior night.
Perhaps I left my morals two years ago when I swore to pop the dull Norwegian bubble. I had plans: hitchhike Eastern Europe, stay in Mongolia with a tribe, see India, go back to my Indonesian roots, get a van and hit the Norwegian road — in solitude, to feel what it is like to be alone. Cross paths with people who think differently from society. I often do, but people are dynamic when they leave their offices temporarily, thus fly to Indonesia loaded with desires and fetishes for oriental vagina. There I lay, enabling them.
I have been exploiting the locals for surfing every day and having frugality as an option, but too often eating at fancy cafes. The food is cheap and many foreign residents I came in contact with were not shy to admit that they lived in Indonesia because it is cheap, to which I would reply “Why aren’t you doing anything for the community?”
Why do we travel selfishly rather than selflessly? Why was I travelling?
Once I stop chasing happiness is when I will find it.