I was invited to Julie's 19th birthday party, and originally I was a little apprehensive about going as I didn't know too many of Julie's friends and wasn't too sure if I was going to be a loner for the whole night, but it turned out I knew quite a few of the people there and got to know quite a few I hadn't really known too well before!
In the morning I went to the church service which was a special one as it was celebrating this guy becoming a new minister. There were all these representatives from churches around Auckland, and they even had two ministers give sermons/speeches! We ended up having lunch which was slightly different as well in that the guests got to sit at the reserved tables with tablecloths! Us usual people just sat at the other tables. While the usual lunch was rice with vegetables and tofu, there was a bit of sweet stuff for us all, like apple crumble and other cakes (for free!)
After church we went to West City to pay Aonghas a visit and drop off his lunch. He had to work for most of the day. He gave me in return the little card he bought for my phone earlier in the morning with my dad all the way at Sylvia Park Dick Smith (there was only one left!). After that my mum and I went shopping for Lisa and Julie's birthday presents. That took a few hours as I had no idea what to get them! I'm really really bad at buying birthday gifts for people as it takes me years to choose! I was texting Gwen and Phoebe who were giving me some advice, and in the end bought this lucky pig hanging thingy for Lisa and a scarf from Cotton On for Julie (and it's black!!)
I finally got home at about 5pm, thinking there'd be a few hours for me to get ready before Julie's party at 7.30pm. Gwen texted, telling me she was going at 5pm as that's what her invitation said, and so I thought maybe Lisa and Julie were having their parties at different times. Not so! A little while later I had a look at my invitation and it actually said 5pm onwards! So I started rushing around trying to get things ready! I had my BYO water bottle and the presents wrapped, now finally off to the party!
I got there to find all the group of girls from transition and the village + Zahir, such as Gwen, Alex, Phoebe, Alana, Rhea, Lisa, Julie, Jenna, Christine, and a few more. They were sitting around just talking, and so I gave my presents to Julie (who I didn't see the first time I came around!) and went over and talked with Zahir and Gwen for a while. The barbecue was going and it wasn't long till we started eating.
After a while, Zahir got into a conversation with Christine, Gwen went over to the table to eat (and drink) while all the others were drinking and talking to each other, so I was kinda left alone, dreading that the whole night might end up like that! That's when I decided that if I wanted to have a good time, I'd have to get to it! I went over and started a conversation with Jenna, which was cool because I haven't talked to Jenna much before. Rhea was sitting beside her and I ended up catching up with her, before I got talking with Phoebe and this new girl Ana from Te Puke (yes the kiwifruit place! We had a looong talk about kiwifruit!)
Gwen came back and I started telling her stuff I shouldn't and since she wanted some privacy we ended up going round to the front of the house to talk on the driveway. Soon everyone started coming around to the front and hanging out! The whole group then decided to walk down to the park and hang out at the playground. I heard someone ask if I was drunk! Now that was weird! When everyone started getting restless we all walked back. By now Gwen was probably onto her third drink, and being the concerned friends we were, I managed to con Gwen into letting me look after her drink while she slid down the slide (or was it the flying fox?) before making a run for it and passing it up to Zahir who was sitting on top of the monkey bars. Gwen tried jumping up for it but soon gave up and Zahir left the beer at the playground until Ana made a dash for it! As soon as I saw this I started running but she beat me to it, so Gwen clung even tighter to her drink!
When we got back we hung out at the back for a bit more. I managed to talk to Phoebe for a bit which was cool as I haven't caught up with her in a while! She and Ana tried to get me to tell them who I like but when I told them I needed to think about it they wandered off and nobody saw them for a little while! I texted them to make sure they were OK, but didn't get any reply until they actually got back! At least they were safe! I caught up with Rory, who was a year ahead of me at Rutherford. He's now doing an electrical apprenticeship. We started discussing men's rights and everything with Zahir before Charlene came along and listened to us rant on about how men deserve equal rights! That's when Zahir started filling the Sprite bottle with water from the hose, and put it back on the table disguising it as Sprite! I can't remember if anyone actually fell for it! I think someone did!
After a few words with some other people, I tried getting Gwen to get a drink of juice or lemonade or something, so while she was pouring her drink I grabbed her beer and made a run for it again! Although people were egging me on to pour it out, I felt bad about it so once again I passed it to Zahir (yeah so he can get the blame! ;) ) but then somehow Natasha got hold of it and Gwen got her drink back!!
People started leaving and so everyone were saying their goodbyes. I was told by someone that I was fun to be around with! Woah that's a first - I'm like one of the most boring people out there! Anyway soon there were only a few of us left. Charlene was starting to get sick and dipsy (or is it tipsy?) and fell over, which was a little freaky, considering she fell on me! Apparently she didn't eat before drinking, which in the alcoholic's guide to drinking is a big no-no. She was really upset about something. I tried my best to tell a really lame joke but that didn't really work. Because of my inexperience in dealing with such things I stood to one side and watched with Jenna and Phoebe, who later took on a more dominant role. Charlene soon got into the spewing stages and saying funny things (I won't say here!!!) before she fell asleep...or passed out? I don't really know. Julie in the meantime was really tipsy and walking all over the place! She tripped over some slippers and then when stepping outside fell over again! That's when her mum got mad and her older brother carried her inside to bed. At about that time my parents came to pick me up.
Overall I ended up quite a bit of fun, and all I needed were three bottles of water! I know alcohol is still bad but over time I've kinda learnt not to take a radical and in-you-face confrontational approach to it, as that won't help anything. Plus, it's a person's own decision whether they want to drink or not, despite the health effects. I've come to realise that maybe it's better (or maybe more productive) just to ensure people drink safely and don't harm themselves too much while at it!
I really enjoyed hanging out with all those people again. I've missed them heaps, but now in a week's time I've got to go back to uni and focus on studying again, being around all these different people again!