The morning after the glitzy media party, I had to drag myself out of bed at 8am and go to work in the bilingual nursery. On Fridays I'm in with the really teeny tiny kids and I thought that somehow they'd be easier to cope with on a hangover than the older ones: my first mistake of the morning.
The other teacher told me to take half the class and do an activity with them. She asked me what I was going to do and this was when I made my second mistake- I said I would do 'dance and music'...
As soon as I got the musical instruments out, the toddlers swarmed around me, picking up the loudest instruments before I had the chance to tell them what we were going to do. I had planned on introducing each instrument in English, then passing it round the group so everyone could have a turn. In reality, I found myself surrounded by children either banging drums or blowing whistles right down my ear.
I don't know how I made it out alive, but three hours later I found myself staggering out into the sunlight, my ears still ringing...
After the nursery I got the metro home and sank my head against the window. I needed a nap before my au pair job, especially as we were supposed to be going to Silencio that night- Cece's friend and casting director for his show was going to 'get us in'. We've wanted to go for AGES. (Georgie, Amy, Olivia and I almost went the night we met that band The Teenagers in Chez Moune and they took us there, but the bouncer said they'd stopped letting people in that time.)
If you don't know, Silencio is a members club 'conceived and designed by David Lynch' (nobody mentions the name Silencio without adding this little detail) and although they do let non-members in, it is notoriously difficult to get through the door- you have to 'work in the media' to be even get a look-in.
Obviously, as Silencio is quite swanky place, I didn't want to turn up looking like a withered clam. I definitely needed a nap. On the metro home I thought about Olivia, who would still be in my room, probably still asleep. She would want to go for lunch somewhere and get a coffee. I resolved to burst into the room, inform her I was going to have a nap and politely ignore her when she tried to persuade me to go for lunch.
"I'm not going for lunch," I said as soon as I walked in, "I need to nap, otherwise I can't come to Silencio."
Olivia protested that she hadn't even suggested going for lunch. Also, she had noticed I had a goodie bag from last night's party... In my drunken wisdom I had 'hidden' it in my wardrobe and left my wardrobe door wide open.
We split the goodie bag- I got the Lush stuff and some hair serum and some M&Ms, and Olivia took the Philosophy face cream. (There wasn't as much stuff as we were expecting but Olivia said there were supposed to be two goodie bags for each person, and that the other bag was full of make-up and face products... I think the girl bartender must have stolen my other goodie bag.)
When Olivia had finished getting ready, I sighed and stood up.
"Let's just go for a quick lunch then, ok?"
We went for sushi on my road (I never go anywhere in my area, because it's so touristy and expensive, but it was actually ok) then we went for a coffee. By the time I got home I was so jumped up on caffeine that I think I managed a five minute snooze before it was time to go to work.
That night Olivia cooked dinner at Cece's apartment (pork in cider with mashed sweet potato) but just for me and her, because Cece had gone out straight from work and we were going to meet him later. Normally I love being in Cece's apartment, but on Friday the creepiest thing happened...
As soon as I arrived, Olivia told me that somebody had been watching her while she cooked. I looked out of the window and sure enough, across the courtyard was the shadow of a tall man stood in his window, staring directly into Cece's apartment. He barely moved all evening. And over the weekend things got stranger but more on that later...
I had wanted us to go out early because I was working the next day, at my au pair job. The mum said I had to be there at 10.15 because she was driving the oldest girl across Paris for a party and she didn't want to leave the nine year old alone with the baby. I had that vaguely panicky feeling, you know when you have to be up early the next day and so all night you're trying to push the thought out of your head?
In the end I consoled myself by thinking about, not how little sleep I was going to get, but instead of how much napping I would be able to do. I thought I could trick my brain if I got home and said loudly:
"Hmm, do I have time for a quick nap before work? Oh my God, amazing! I can nap for four hours!! That's the longest nap ever!"
I worked out that if we got home at 4am, I could nap for four and half hours and still have plenty time for a shower and some breakfast. Worst case scenario would be that we got home at 5am, in which I could still nap for four hours. Absolutely fine.
We didn't make it out of Cece's apartment until midnight, which kind of made me a little anxious about what time we would make it home, but by this point I was still completely sober and couldn't see the night turning into a Heavy One, especially as I knew the drinks would be ridiculously expensive in Silencio.
The casting director and the assistant director for Cece's show live together in a gorgeous flat, also in the marais, and they were having a party before Silencio. Everyone was smashed when we arrived, so me and Olivia tried to catch up quickly. Soon the party wound down to that point in the night where people get out guitars and start singing. Me, Cece and Olivia were a bit worried that nobody would end up going to Silencio. In the end, after a particularly emotional rendition of 'Wonderwall', Cece literally wrenched the guitar away from the Ass. Director and demanded to be taken to Silencio.
The taxi of English people (me, Olivia, Cece and his friend who was visiting from London) pulled up before anyone else's. There was already a heated arguement taking place outside the club, with an angry man yelling at the bouncer because he wouldn't let him in and he was an 'important person'. Cece's casting director friend had told Cece that he was on the list, and I had a horrible feeling that they were only going to let him in and nobody else.
Well, he wouldn't even let Cece in. The bouncer barely looked at us and told us to step to the side. Cece's friend from London was really pissed off, because she's used to getting 'her clients' in everywhere, but me and Olivia were a bit less surprised- we do get unceremoniously thrown out of a lot of places in Paris, for no apparent reason. You can't take it personally- bouncers in Paris are horrible arseholes. I see into their dreams and they dream of empty clubs where nobody is allowed in, ever.
Luckily our French Connections arrived and the bouncer took the rope away so we could get inside, but we did have to wait while a 'famous' French actor hugged the bouncer and was allowed before us. (I have no idea who he was, I'll try and ask someone so I can Google stalk him.)
I was half-expecting to hate Silencio and for it to be full of pretentious dickheads, but guess what?
I really loved Silencio, the song that was playing as soon as we walked in was 'Murder She Wrote', one of my all-time favourite tunes from Back in the Day (if you've seen Save the Last Dance, you'll know what I'm talking about). Everyone in there seemed really relaxed and happy, most people weren't even very dressed up. (I'm so glad we were too hungover to get really dressed up, as we would have looked out of place.)
It's a beautiful club, with tunnels that look like they are made of gold bricks and a transparent fumoir with seats inside that look like sculptures. Also, they serve Hendrick's gin with Fever-Tree tonic which Olivia has told me about before but I've never tasted it. Now I don't know how I will ever drink any other brands of gin and tonic. It doesn't even taste like a G&T, well it does, but it's so much nicer. It tastes like a Gin and Tonic that has been made by fairies for their Queen, at the bottom of an English country garden.
For 18 euros though, I wouldn't have expected anything less...
The French people we were with dropped off like flies because they were either drunk or had planned to meet friends elsewhere, then Cece told us he had to take his friend from London home because she was so drunk. Me and Olivia said we would stay for one more drink and then meet him at home.
Except... somehow... we didn't.
I don't know how we were so drunk, because at 18 euros a pop we obviously didn't buy hundreds of drinks, but by the time we left we were one of the only people left in the club. We got a taxi who drove us a really long-winded way home and kept stopping for No Reason, although when we got out Olivia said he had been trying to feel her up! Absolutely disgusting. And we're not idiots, it was a Real Taxi.
What makes me laugh is that some people will read this and think 'Well you shouldn't get that drunk then.' I'm SICK of people making idiotic comments like this. I take real offense to people who say things like "If girls didn't get so fucked, there would be less rape and sexual assualt."
Hmm. Maybe... (No, definitely not, I was being sarcastic.)
But do you know what solution would lower the rates of rape to nothing? Statistics have shown that if men DIDN'T RAPE PEOPLE then nobody would get raped, ever. Amazing isn't it? Mind-blowing.
We got back to Cece's to find his English friend on the floor in the living room, and a strange bearded man in the spare bedroom- our bedroom. We crept into Cece's room to ask him who the man was. We stood over Cece, tapping him gently on the shoulder to wake him up. He woke up with a start and yelled:
"Get off me! Where the fuck where you? I NEEDED you! You fucking ignored all my texts and calls! He saved us! He fucking saved us because you weren't there!"
Me and Olivia had jumped back in unison like scolded kittens and we stayed in this position for some seconds, momentarily frozen with shock.
"He'll be fine in the morning!" Olivia said eventually.
But where to sleep? I assumed that Bearded Stranger would be gay (I thought Cece had pulled him or something) and was all for climbing into bed with him, but Olivia was whispering at me to wake him up. In the end, he woke up anyway and went into the living room. As we climbed into bed, I got my phone out to set the alarm and saw that it was 7am.
I set my alarm for 9am, telling myself I'd have fifteen minutes to have a quick shower and throw my clothes on.
When my alarm went off, it sounded a bit weird but my head was still all muddled with dreams and alcohol, so I couldn't work out what was going on. I stomped over to my phone and saw that the au pair mum was ringing me. Her call ended as I stared in horror. The time. The time was 10.30am.