I have plenty of what you would call ‘guilty pleasures’. I’m not even remotely shamed by them- bring me your worst 2003 pop, your Harry Potter fanfic, your early B-side Swiftie- and watch me embrace the pleasure with none of the guilt. I am all kinds of enthusiastic where embarrassingly enjoying myself is concerned.
Now, I am big on travelling. I am big on learning the cultural impact of the Venetian empire’s decline. I am big on finding the island’s freshest fish. I am very big on seeing what the locals see, eating what the locals eat, and going where the locals go. All very serious travel blogger lark. Quite.
(This is a very longwinded way of saying that I went on a #Lads’ Holiday, and it was my travelling guilty pleasure.)
We spent all day dozing on sunloungers listening to (who’da thunk it) Taylor Swift, then perked up in time to play vicious drinking games (with the guys helping me cheat so they didn’t have to carry me home later that night), then onto the Strip, where we went to the same club six nights in a row to listen to bad remixes of Calvin Harris songs and chug watered down cocktails. Rinse and repeat.
Of course, I exerted my Only-Woman-Here power to strongarm them into visiting tiny, silent villages to visit Cuban churches and hike up mini-mountains, but they were willing enough as long as we had a pint-break at some point. Fair’s fair.
We skinny dipped on the first night, giddy from sickly shots and our alcohol-induced increased body confidence. We befriended a guy who had a pet vulture. We requested Beyonce at every bar we were in, and obnoxiously sang football chants as we got lost on our way home.
The guys spent a good deal of time finding creative ways to injure themselves (black eye = playfight, sunburn = too drunk to put suncream on, sprained wrist = rugby tackle into the sea, bruised rib = pretty sure Danny just threw himself on the floor for this one), though nobody threw up which is pretty impressive.
All in all, it wasn’t a classy week. That does not mean, however, it wasn’t one the best experiences I’ve ever had. Maybe it’s all in my head, or maybe it’s the volume of travel blogs I read, but I’ve noticed a distancing between ”travelling” and “holidays”. You know, where one includes yoga and underground bars , and the other includes copious amount of Pitbull (Mr Worldwide) and Full Englishes.
I’d like to submit the idea that travelling, whether to experience culture and to come back grounded, or to experience loud music and come back hungover, is wonderful in all forms. Our location might have been interchangeable with any old Costa Del Sol, but sometimes you need a week long, drunk reunion instead of breaking the spine of a LP guidebook.
And anyway, who would turn down a week with this boyband?