Come to Oxford if you want to ingest weird stuff
I had some friends come and visit last weekend which was cool. They were called Uncle Ernie and Toni, and even though she has a boy's name, Toni is a girl. And Uncle Ernie's real name is Phil, but I prefer to call him Uncle Ernie because assigning someone a random and inexplicable name keeps them on their toes.
After mountain biking during the day on Saturday, we had all arranged to go for an evening curry on Cowley Road (a popular nightspot) in Oxford. I chose a restaurant called the Majliss because it is a contemporary restaurant with absolutely bloody excellent service (they even put your napkin on your lap for you, so that you don't exert yourself or pull a muscle).
Everything went swimmingly. Between us, we ordered enough food to feed a supermodel for life, and Izzy rather took to the traditional Indian drink, Lassi; a rich, yoghurt-based beverage (non alcoholic of course) which is flavoured with cumin.
'Aww, she's all multi-cultural and everything,' I thought to myself, stuffing a naan bread piled high with 'green chilli Jalfrezi' into my mush.
"Can I have another Lassi mum?" Izzy asked after polishing off the first one in double quick time.
"Of course you can," I said, calling over the waiter.
After stuffing ourselves stupid, we paid the bill and headed out into the brisk night air.
"Would anyone like a chewing gum?" I asked, pulling a tub out of my bag.
Uncle Ernie nodded, "yeh, I'll have one."
He popped one into his mouth and we continued walking up Cowley Road, towards where the car was parked.
Ten seconds later, Izzy tugged my hand and looked at me imploringly; "Mummy, I feel sick."
"You'll be fine until we get home," I assured her, stroking her head.
As it transpired, I was wrong. Before I could say 'puking is gross', Izzy was barfing her guts up all over the pavement. And the barf consisted of 100% regurgitated Lassi.
It was all rather embarrassing (especially because I had no cleaning implements, so had to leave it splatted on the pavement). Even the multitude of University students walking past surveyed the scene in a disapproving fashion, which is bloody rich considering that they spend most of their life with traffic cones on their head and pushing each other around in shopping trolleys.
Disaster over, we continued walking when I suddenly noticed that Uncle Ernie was coughing uncontrollably. And if that wasn't bad enough, he was sweating and shaking like a Liverpudlian in a Sports shop.
"Are you ok mate?" I asked him.
"No, I don't think so," he replied, coughing some more, "I can't stop coughing and I feel all light-headed and dizzy."
And after watching him sweating and shaking, that's when it hit me. A couple of weeks ago, I noticed that my tub of chewing gum had spilled into the bottom of my bag. I had picked up all the gum and put it back into the tub (actually that makes me sound a bit minging doesn't it?).
Then, a few days after that, I spotted a blister-pack of Nicotine-Gum in my bag that I had been carrying for a friend ages ago, and they had forgotten to take it back. The thing was, that the blister-pack was now empty and the gums had obviously worked themselves loose.......
So, as it happened, I had inadvertantly put them back into the tub with my regular gum, not realising what they were (they were exactly the same shape and colour for chrissake!).
"Shit, I've just accidentally fed you Nicotine gum!" I hollered.
"AAH!" Uncle Ernie shouted, "am I now addicted?"
"Dunno," I shouted back (even though I was standing next to him), before adding, "tell me how you would react if I offered you a cigarette."
"I wouldn't want it," he replied in a gasping fashion.
"I think you might be safe then," I said, sighing with relief.
Phew. Puke-gate and Nicotine-gate were safely over. And so we all went back to my house for coffee.
And as luck would have it, I managed to avoid putting any meth crystals into their drinks (purely because I have no reason to have meth crystals in the house because I am not a drug addict). So instead we had a nice cup of coffee.
Annie (Lady M) x