The first 'event' was an afternoon river cruise but the boat never left the pier! We stayed onboard and drank wine for 2+ hours before getting into shuttles and going to a bar for pre-dinner cocktails.
That 'event' took another 2+ hours, before we walked a few blocks to a local restaurant for dinner. Except it wasn't really a restaurant, it was more of a bar so...
Yup, you guessed it: more drinking, more mingling, and more talking to the same people I'd seen since 2pm that afternoon. Dinner was served at about 9pm but it wasn't a 'proper' dinner it was just big platters of nibbles delivered to various bar leaners and tables. Yes, it was good but it wasn't really 'dinner' in my book. Clearly someone had decided that the best way to get everyone 'networking' was to ply them with alcohol and not give them any substantial meal to soak it up.
My wife of course loved it and as one of the few women present she had been working the room(s) constantly (since 2pm). I have learnt from similar occasions that my job is to stand well clear and leave her to it and not 'crowd' her by standing next to her - but at the same time I have to pop over periodically to see if she's enjoying herself. She is, when there's wine!
So some people started leaving at about 10pm because it had been a long day - some were headed home on the redeye and others were going back to their hotels to catch some sleep for an early flight the next morning. My wife told me we should probably leave soon too, although our flight wasn't until mid-day the next day. Which didn't bother me since we had been upgraded to a luxury suite in the brand new hotel we had booked into - so I was looking forward to getting her into that plush bed with the 12 pillows!
So half the room left and the men at my wife's table kept refilling her wine. Also at our table was another woman from BNG, who was my wife's BNG BFF since their infamous trip to Mexico together on a BNG conference 18 months ago (which I was not present at). The conference was actually in LA but my wife and her friend had been lured into a limo and taken on a surprise visit to Tijuana at 11pm by some of the guys from BNG. Because when you're a dynamic individual, and a member of BNG, you have to be spontaneous and do crazy things because you can and you're fearless.
The women ended up in a Tijuana strip club run by bikers, and they left the BNG boys there at 3am and tried to recross the border - which was when they discovered that it was harder to get out of Mexico without a passport than it is to get into Mexico without a passport**. Especially if you're intoxicated. Anyway, my point is that this woman is not a good influence on my wife and here she was again, insisting that my wife stay with her since they were the last two women left.
When I got a moment I told my wife that it was now almost 11pm and her buddy was really drunk and we should put her in a Uber and send her home. Besides, her BNG BFF had already begged me to make sure she got home by midnight because she had court in the morning. My wife agreed and said we'd leave shortly, since half of the half still remaining were also leaving now too. And then someone demanded another bottle of wine and my wife made the selection from the wine list. I realised then that we were not 'leaving shortly'.
My wife was drunk too but I realised that she was still in control. It worried me a little. Not seeming drunk is one of the signs you're an alcoholic - you're body masks the common signs it's intoxicated (slurry speech, wobbly movements) because it's 'learnt' to handle copious alcohol. I knew that with her petite frame she had to be very drunk - but then she wasn't sloppy drunk, unlike her friend... who did have slurry speech and wobbly movements! Her friend was really annoying me now... throwing her arms around me and telling me what a great guy I was and that she was my second wife. Oops, did I mention that her husband had left her two years ago and she still hadn't gotten over it? It was clear to me that she was very damaged emotionally and maybe getting wasted every chance she got wasn't the best way to deal with it.
By 11.15pm we were down to a final eight people, 7 of whom were very drunk and indignant that the restaurant/bar was turning up the lights, turning down the music, and putting all the chairs and stools on top of the tables. "We close at 11.30" said the Manager, "but you're welcome to finish your drinks until then". It was clear to me he wanted us out now, but everyone was insistent we finish the bottle first. At 11.30pm he switched off the music, turned on all the lights, and told us to go. It took another 10 minutes before we did.
My wife said "uh oh, time for us to go" but once we got to the pavement outside it was obvious she didn't mean home to the hotel. Her BNG BFF insisted we go to another bar, "one where we can dance!", and like lemmings we all shuffled off down Main Street looking for something suitable. After a 15 minute walk we stumbled across a bar playing 80s music so the girls shrieked and decided this was the place. I was not drunk so I could see this was not the best club in town, and now understood how these girls found themselves in a Mexican strip club 18 months earlier and thought they were in a nightclub.
To be honest I was now tired of all this BNG BS and keen to go back to the hotel. I knew if we stayed it would devolve into an all nighter and there would be no sex by the time we stumbled into bed. That may sound selfish, but quite frankly I did not see the value in hanging out for another hour or three with the other four remaining BNG'ers (since two had seen sense and skipped after leaving the restaurant). We had seen these drunkards for 8 hours already so I decided to call time:
I told my wife I was going back to the hotel. I'd been up since 6am and it was now midnite and I was tired. She begged me to stay, and promised we would only be a half hour. I reminded her that she'd said that three times already since 10pm and told her I knew how this would end: "You'll dance here for at least an hour, and then you will all be really drunk and someone will say we should all go to a strip club, and then we'll go to the strip club and stay there for another hour until someone says the Wednesday strippers are all fugly and we should go somewhere else. And then you'll look for an after hours place and we won't get home until 5am"
"So I'm going to skip all that and go now. You can either come with me now, or stay with your drunk as fuck buddies..."
It was at that point she turned on me. She did not shout, but she got right up in my face, pointed her finger, and hissed very loudly: "If you want to go then you can fuck off right now and fucking go home - fuck off...."
That was just her first sentence. It was followed by some more paragraphs and some stuff happened after that but I'm gonna have to tell you the rest tomorrow because a lot more happened (A LOT MORE!) and I've rambled too much already.
**UPDATE (Saturday) ~ At a dinner party last night my wife telling someone else the story about her Tijuana side-trip. Except this time she said they did have their passports - but got grief from Border Security because they had only left the country for 4-5 hours. I presume the Feds were suspicious of drug activity but they weren't searched - my wife said they were detained but managed to talk their way home after 20 minutes. What was most interesting to me was hearing that my wife had brought her passport - which indicates the side-trip wasn't so spontaneous, was it?