The pulsating lights, the gyrating bodies, the incessant beat of overplayed mashed pop music. My eyes began to water. The smoke was seriously getting to me.
I'd never been one for clubbing, but found myself outside Zouk on a rainy Saturday night. What was I doing there? Celebrating one of my best friends' quarter life milestone. He was turning twenty five in a few days and decided that the only way to celebrate was to open up a few bottles and groove along to the music.
I remember whistling softly at the absurdity of it all as my friend made his wish and blew the candle out. Twenty five. That was amazing in anyone's books. It seemed just like yesterday that we were wiping snot and mud from our faces back in our high school field, almost a decade ago. A decade. I can finally tell people that I've seen things from the past decade, before bursting into laughter. It was really just so absurd.
I yawned involuntarily, and a few of the others followed suit. Yes, we were getting old, and as much as we didn't want to admit it, the burden of twenty five years of life had taken its toll on our bodies. The days of spending time in a mamak until 4AM just chilling and talking nonsense had dwindled down to nothing. We were coming out later and leaving earlier. The pauses in a topic between grew more frequent as each of us struggled to stay awake. We were all growing older, but unwilling and unable to accept that fact.
The free-flowing alcohol didn't help. I've learned that alcohol brings nothing along with it, well, if you don't include the crippling hangover the day after. Back in the day, alcohol meant the inhibited freedom to act like an adult. Now it meant the freedom of throwing hard-earned cash out away. As an adult, I might add. A whole lot of difference it made.
Old. That's what we were becoming. I was so confident that I would be a great adult, I would shoulder the pressures of adulthood with ease. I wouldn't be like my dad, always complaining of back pains, or my mom, having to always sleep early. I would stay up late, and do everything I ever wanted to do. Because I thought that as an adult, I could.
I was wrong, of course. That cocky confidence brought about by the boundless energy I seemed to have in my youth. Today, I keep reminding myself of a time where I used to stay up late, or even forgo sleep as I rushed assignments back in my university days. I keep telling myself that I can do that now, and that it's no big deal for me. I was holding on to a youthfulness that had long faded.
It's getting late. Maybe it's time to go home.
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