I’m a pretty level-headed lady, so it’s rather convoluted that one of my fondest OTP memories involves two hours staring at the vile yellowed walls of the Wellington Police holding cells.
After a couple of rounds at our old pal The Residence, we pondered where the clear October night would take us. I was in the company of a new beau (three dates in) and things between us had thus far been smooth. The rest of the gathering consisted of several students, a couple of boxes of DoBros, a box of Wild Buck and absolutely zero inclination or energy to scale the Kelburn hill in order to drink our beverages in the comfort of a flat. And so we thought outside the box, as it were, and found ourselves a cosy abandoned building to colonise until town-o-clock.
As we bantered and sipped away the evening in the moonlit building, I concede that a small part of myself felt a smidge cool and edgy– likely due to overconsumption of Skins episodes through my pre-pubescence. And sure, we’d had to scale a few walls and barbed wire fences and CCTV warning signs but hey, we’d still saved our quads a trek up the ridiculous gradient of the Dixon street stairs – fellow Wellingtonians will understand the relief.
But all of a sudden chaos ensued. It was chaos in the form of a rabid Alsatian, several blinding torches and fluoro police vests. One of the lads in our group leapt and ran, and was quickly pinned to the ground by his leg with rabid Alsatian teeth. Next thing we knew we were sliding around in the back of the paddy wagon, trying quickly to process our alcohol and the crazy turn of events. Into the vile yellow women’s cell I went.
At this point you’re probably wondering why I consider this to be a “good” night – does she even have a brain, or a social life? Jesus, the things girls will do for a guy they like. I guess the beer played a big role, but nothing was anything less than bloody hilarious that evening. The first thing to set me off was the policewoman who gruffly commented, “I’m glad none of you study law, I really hate law students”. We were then asked to remove facial piercings for safety and to equal horror and amusement my cell pal extracted a chunky length of snot with her nose piercing, and handed it awkwardly to the policewoman in the silence of the room.
One cell over, the policeman searching the boys asked them to remove their shoes. “Are you carrying any drugs?” he asked – then, as he observed a pair of cannabis printed socks “No, – are you sure about that?” As soon as he bolted the door shut behind him, we heard a rowdy rendition of the “and they came bounding over” Youtube video to the definite dis-amusement of our bitten pal, who was feeling fairly piteous.
A short wait later, we departed the station with a farewell call from the policeman of “tell the guy who got bitten to take a concrete pill and harden up”. The gathering continued into the still-young night to retrieve our stashed drinks and continue our boisterous Friday night. I’m privy to my foolishness and luck that evening (and certainly hope to have done my dash with Wellington Police) – but the arrest certificate framed in my flat lounge is a fantastic conversation starter, and token of a key milestone in my relationship with my (now) boyfriend.