Last week there was a knock at the door. It was my neighbour and their niece, who I’d been told was having her 18th birthday party next door to us on Saturday night.
Since we have young kids who might wake up from the noise, she was told to go and tell me in person – to explain they’d definitely turn the music off at midnight…that there are only about thirty girls going to the party, and even some parents would be there. Golly gosh. In other words, quite a harmless 18th birthday party arrangement.
Of course I gave her the OK to go ahead with her 18th, and to have a great time. As she looked up at me, her spotty face beaming, dressed in her school uniform, she instantly made me feel like a middle-aged parent-type. Which of course I am. Lovely.
I shut the door and tried to remember what exactly it was that I was doing at 18. In that moment, I actually couldn’t remember. All I knew was that it felt like a long, long time ago, whatever it was that I did back then. I promptly decided to forget about it before I made myself feel any older.
On Saturday afternoon we went & had a look at the set-up for the party with our neighbours. The house is actually being demolished in a couple of weeks, so it’s completely empty – and if it’s trashed, no-one cares. The perfect party venue.
There was a “conversation pod” room (lol) with beanbags and a futon…a disco ball in the lounge – at least they haven’t gone out of fashion; a table tennis table in another room. And as they had full permission to destroy the place, the walls had been graffitied with messages.
We were reading some of the messages on the walls and having a good laugh, when we noticed this one above the
Party like it’s 1993!!!
The laughter subsided. There was a cough or two. Then a short silence.
“Hang on.” I felt one of my blonde moments coming on. “Does that mean she was born in 1993?”
Silence, then me again.
“Oh my God, she was born in 1993.”
If we weren’t feeling old before that moment, we were now.
Me: “I was in year 12 in 1993…”
My neighbour: “I was in my first year of Uni in ’93.”
Mr. 42: “I finished school in ’86!”
Lots of laughter from us ‘young’ girls. 1986!
Then our other neighbour cleared his throat. “I finished in ’84.”
So again I was made to think – what did I actually do in 1993?
It was the year I finished school. I remember a fairly horrible frantic panic of last minute cramming sessions before my HSC, as a result of spending too much time flirting with boys in my science classes. It was the year when I first discovered the benefits of caffeine at 2am when studying for science exams. It was also the year I discovered that caffeine and last-minute cramming were not going provide the HSC marks I desired, which forced me to completely rethink what I was going to do after school. I remember feeling quite lost and confused – I really had no idea what I wanted to do, and yet there was an expectation that I should somehow know by now. At 17.
So I escaped up the coast to schoolies week, and still being just 17, armed myself with a $10 fake ID I’d purchased through an ad in Dolly magazine. Awesome.
I flittered about on the Gold Coast with a few high school friends, and boys who I’d never met before. My trusty fake ID got me into any nightclub I chose, and I spent a fortnight clubbing, drinking bourbon & coke, buying flavoured condoms from Condom Kingdom and giggling like the silly teenagers we were. Getting back to the hotel at 7am and having a morning swim, before crashing into bed and sleeping till 3…then doing it all over again with no trouble at all. When I managed to find a payphone, I’d call my parents reverse charge to let them know all was well. No mobile phones of course. (I wonder now if my parents got any sleep at all in the time I was away?)
I remember reading a lot of this in 1993:
And envying the likes of Elle MacPherson and Niki Taylor. Having long-standing crushes on Johnny Depp and the entire cast of Dead Poet’s Society (with the exception of Robin Williams). Getting my P’s, but not before driving my parent’s car into the side wall of the driveway. Driving my parents completely insane. Thinking I knew so much about life and relationships – but of course how little I actually knew!
I’d love to know…what were you doing in 1993?