When someone first offered me the chance to go on a summer holiday I thought it was a joke.
When someone first offered me the chance to go on a summer holiday I thought it was a joke. Firstly, it was Ibiza and I only had a month’s notice, how would I be able to afford that, but secondly the girl who was asking me was more of an acquaintance than a friend- in fact, I’d only met her twice in the Student’s Union bar. We got along great and had the same friends at university, but spending a week together in Ibiza was a different matter. Thirdly, we were going with two other girls, her best friends and all two years younger than me.
Despite all of this I said yes. Given that this is my third year at university this would likely be my last chance to take this kind of holiday and I needed to experience this rite of passage that all my friends had done two years previously after high school. The hype swept me along and within a few weeks it had arrived: GIRLS, WE’RE GOING TO IBIZA!
If you ever watch the Ibiza episode of Sun, Sex and Suspious Parents you can imagine what we landed to, and even the atmosphere on the plane. The aircraft was buzzing with excitement and crammed with teenagers in their bikinis, despite the fact we were flying out of the rainy UK. To say we left the wet weather behind was an understatement when we landed in 41 degrees. We got shown to the hotel, given a talk by the rep and reassured that we would not need to go bankrupt this holiday (phew). Then we were given an hour before the group was heading for the first night out (horror!).
This was actually my first holiday out of the UK never mind without parents so to say it was a little daunting doesn’t cover it. Thankfully we were with a group of fellow teenagers all in the same situation so it was a little less scary. The first night faced us with one euro drinks, the second a sunset cruise and unlimited free champagne mixes (lethal by the way!), the third was a “quiet night” around the West End, the fourth was Chase and Status at Amnesia, the fifth was the “booze cruise”, the sixth was Swedish House Mafia at Ushaia and the final night we spent at the Full Moon Party at Eden… We were kept busy that’s for sure!
Ultimately the holiday lived up to Ibiza’s reputation. It was hot, there were drugs, there were beaches, alcohol and teenagers passed out everywhere. Call me old fashioned though, or maybe at 21 I’m too old for that kind of scene, but I was quite weary of most of it. Yes, I’ve dabbled in illegal drugs when I was younger so I can’t be judgmental but when people “needed” MDMA it was quite overwhelming. We were often chased by club reps and illegal taxi drivers and for many the main focus was on sex- which is all well and good until one friend is being labelled a “slag” for sleeping with too many guys on a holiday and the insults are covered as banter.
I still believe these traditions teenage summer holidays are a positive experience though and I’ll definitely be heading back to Ibiza eventually with closer friends. It’s the kind of place where you can feel like you have absolutely no worries besides the then and there and meet new people. However, right now I think I’m going to focus on a bit of sun and culture in Rome once my studies are done.