Thonged off on hol­i­days

The Weekend Australian - Life - - LIFE - RUTH OSTROW @OstrowRuth

We’re all led to be­lieve that hol­i­days away in par­adise, with­out kids, are a time of fan­tas­tic sex where cou­ples go at it like rab­bits.

False. The thing a lot of peo­ple do is bicker. I bet there would be one bout of good sex for ev­ery 10 ar­gu­ments. Cou­ples are of­ten not used to spend­ing that much time to­gether with­out dis­trac­tions. In ad­di­tion, hav­ing to make end­less small de­ci­sions, such as what to have for din­ner, can make them snarky.

On a re­cent hol­i­day in Bali, my dream of end­less, fab­u­lous sex was rudely in­ter­rupted by a thong. Thongus In­ter­rup­tus.

Early in the piece there was lots of lovin’. But on day three a tragic in­ci­dent. We’d packed the beach bag. For some un­known rea­son Mr Fab­u­lous de­cided, while I was in the toi­let, to take my thongs out of the bag. Fine if he’d told me. But I’m walk­ing to the beach in my gym shoes, and now want to put on my thongs to walk across boil­ing hot sand. “Where are my thongs? I’m sure I packed them?” “I took them out.” “What? Huh? Why?” “I was go­ing to tell you but I for­got.” “But why did you take them out?” “They were heavy and stick­ing out.” (Trans­la­tion: “I’m sick of al­ways car­ry­ing the beach bag.”)

And there un­der the blue skies of par­adise, both of us start singing the couple’s song: “You al­ways … you never … why didn’t you … you are … you are not … I did … I did not …” And of course things are dragged up from 10 years ago.

Re­sult­ing Thongus In­ter­rup­tus: sleep­ing with backs to each other for a couple of nights un­til a good ol’ laugh brought us back to­gether. It was the ar­gu­ment we prob­a­bly had to have to clear the rub­bish from the year past. Which is a good thing.

Yes, many cou­ples are lov­ing and gig­gly, can’t take their hands off each other and at­tempt sex in the swim­ming pool (well, haven’t we all?). But there are just as many jaded cou­ples who look ut­terly bored or ir­ri­tated, es­pe­cially in restau­rants.

The thing to re­alise is that it’s nor­mal to be cranky or to fight on hol­i­days. Happy Ever Af­ter is a myth. The up­set is com­pounded by think­ing you’re the only ones in this fes­tive sea­son bick­er­ing or not hav­ing sex in the pool.

FOMO (fear of miss­ing out) makes the frus­tra­tion worse. But it helps to tackle un­fin­ished re­la­tion­ship is­sues from 2015 and get hid­den re­sent­ments out the way, to clear the air and start 2016 with a clean slate. So go for it ham­mer and thongs. Just as long as there’s some great make-up sex af­ter.

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