Saturday, 27 April 2013

Red Wine - 26th Day of Gratitude

There was a time in my life when I drank.  I drank a lot. I drank all the time. I drank for no reason other than to get drunk, in a social situation, to help me shine.

I loved going anywhere there was people and alcohol.

I remember my first drink, which also turned out to be my first hangover.

Mum thought it would be funny (well I'm assuming that is what she thought) if she gave me a bottle of red wine (that she would never have drunk), to take with me to the Church Youth Group's end of year function so I could "spike the punch"!

Yes, you can all draw breath after exhaling in complete shock ... you may want to draw another breath now though so you don't pass out when I tell you, I was 14 years old at the time.

A friend and I headed off with said bottle concealed in her big purple parker and we were trying to find the opportunity to pour the bottle in the punch, but were too afraid we would get caught ... so we did what any 14 year olds would do, we destroyed the evidence!

Half each, problem solved.

Mum was in disbelief when the Youth Pastor delivered me home explaining to Mum that he thought we were drunk and apologetically telling her he had no idea where we had got the wine from and how sorry he was etc.  As any responsible adult would do when they were in charge of our well being at the time we became COMPLETELY PISSED.

Oh how I felt so sorry for that man later in my life as I realised. SHE. NEVER. TOLD. HIM. THE. TRUTH!

Of course, I suppose she was embarrassed. But what did she think two 14 year olds would do with it? And did she really expect us to spike the punch at a Church gathering?

That one incident, was the beginning of a very long and drawn out list of events that were considered to have been all my fault, including the "Year 10 School Dance incident", and so, when I had left school and Mum and Dad had no real say in where I went or who I went with, I drank.

I don't know why. That first hangover should have been enough to put anyone off drinking for the rest of their life. I recall feeling like I was going to fall out of bed, not to mention the pending vomiting, and so I slept on the floor. At least the room stopped spinning enough for me to get to sleep.

Later, I drank so often I got to the point where I could pretty much out drink most people, but of course it started to cost more money too. That was about the time I switched from Scotch and Dry to wine. Cheap crappy Moselle, I moved onto Riesling and Eventually Chardonnay. But who really cared, least cost most effective, that was all that really mattered.

It was probably also about the time that I started to spend more time with an old school friend of mine.  I would go to her house for dinner or to celebrate events with her and her family, and as we were over 18 by this time, we would have a glass or two of red wine with dinner.

Mr S was a bit of a connoisseur and enjoyed introducing us to different wines and talking to us about how different wines complemented different foods.  Mrs S always had the different foods covered. Mr S also introduced us to Port. Not in the same way I had been introduced to wine initially, no, he taught us to savour it, to smell it, to taste it, to feel it, he taught us to appreciate and respect it.

I learnt to truly enjoy the real value of the combination of alcohol and people. We would talk and listen to music and sit around with their extended family also at times and we would just be.

I was always made to count my drinks or stay the night. Another good lesson.

So tonight as I sat and enjoyed a couple of glasses of red (which I rarely do these days) in the comfort of my own home, I raised my glass to Mr and Mrs S and the lessons they taught me.

Tonight I am grateful for red wine.
How do you manage kids/teens/young adults and alcohol in your house?


  1. It's only recently I've started drinking. And that sounds like a terrible statement haha. What I mean is that my parents would give me sips of their wine or beer at home, and I would pull a face and call them disgusting. I still do that with a lot of alcohol. In the past year when we had to suddenly change our diets, my tastebuds have changed and it's only now I'm finding wines I like. I've always been an erratic drinker - not a binge drinker, but I'll drink a glass a night for a month then not having any for ages. It's just as & when I feel like it for me. I know many people who will only drink on a Friday or Saturday night, which took me a while to understand - as I don't drink to get drunk, I didn't understand why it mattered what day it was!

    1. Yes, I will drink when I feel like I want to. Which is hardly ever now, but like you, the day of the week is no concern, I suppose because I know there will be no hangover to worry about. My friends daughter used to lecture all of us about smoking and how we would all die! Now we do it to her LOL Times do change :-) Nice to hear from you :-)

  2. I don't think I really started drinking until I was 18 or close enough to it. I like scotch and coke, with only a small nip and lots of coke. I've never liked that head spinning, out of control feeling of being too drunk or tipsy, so I've rarely over done it.

    I'm not sure how I'm going to handle the drinking issue with my boys when they are older. It's something I'm dreading to be honest.

    1. Thanks for dropping by Ness. I can't stand the idea of being out of control at all anymore. Must. Have. Control. Ha ha I am very lucky, my 16 year old is not at all interested in alcohol, I believe it is because he is kept busy with other interests, his life is just not at that place. We will see what happens at 18? I think the key is moderation and if they see us "responsibly drinking" then you can only hope it will rub off. :-)