It was the end of my second week at a vast, mysterious international company (not even THEY knew what they did) and a majority of the younger staff were celebrating the Friday with margeritas at La Perla, a Mexican bar specialising in tequila and, ehhr, sport fishing paraphernalia, in the 4th.
It was a chance to get to know my new colleagues; an international bunch, the majority of whom were young interns.
By midnight the night had followed the most obvious trajectory, with Wingman being wing-manhandled off-premises after launching a glass at a mouse on the bar.
“Trip Advisor will here about this!” He’d said, not in a threatening way, but rather in a suggestive tone: he was angling for a free drink, but being a sport-fishing bar, they presumably could spot an angle a mile-off.
The barman’s response was to come around the bar and take a swipe at Wingman, who replied, “You can’t be serious.” In Wingman’s deep-voiced growl, there was a more than sufficient pause after “You can’t….”, causing the barman to hear something else entirely…
Anyway, we were out, and Wingman notched his first black-listing from a Paris bar…(which was still enforced 6 months later, and might still be to this day).
By now it was late, and I was more interested in gaining notches of a different type.
With Wingman sent home to reflect on what he’d done, a hardened party of three had made it into the pumping gay bar Tango, located in the upper Marais: myself, a South American girl and another girl of mixed Northern European lineage.
We were fairly sozzled on a couch, my shirt a sticky mess of lemonade and low-grade tequila, rimmed with my own salty sweat.
I decided to add something else to the mix: a dubious proposition. Essentially, unable to decide which of the girls to try it on with, I decided to not make a decision, and instead propositioned them both.
Not everyone was as into the idea as I was, but two of us did end up at my shoebox flat above the champagne bar and overlooking Top Sexy on Rue Saint Denis.
Since getting booted out of my expansive flat around the corner on Rue du Temple (I’d never moved by shopping trolley before), I was existing in 25m2 up six flights of stairs.
Other tenants included a friendly prostitute on the first floor, a couple of interior decorators immediately below, and my sexy neighbor young neighbor M., who had the lips of Brigit Bardot, and regular noisy sex on a bed that creaked above my ceiling.
It was 4am, and with a threesome off the cards, I figured I could swing the mood back to sensual romantic. It was at this point I remembered my saxophone, which had laid in its case, unplayed for several months at the foot of my bed.
I assembled it and, sitting in my underpants, started on the first bars of George Michael super-hit Careless Whisper.
Perhaps I should have mastered the Sound Of Silence instead, because before the first chorus was up, there was a furious banging on my door.
I opened and should have been less surprised to see my neighbour M. Up till then I’d only heard her banging above my bed.
I profusely apologised, and stowed the saxophone away under my bed.
When it comes to apartment living in Paris, it’s perfectly fine to have loud early morning sex; but better than not to keep your loud morning sax under covers.