The first time I ever got drunk was in the local Woolworths car park at about 8.30 on a Saturday evening. I was 15 and meant to be at my friend’s house watching videos, instead we were knocking back a bottle of port and singing The Cure’s Love Cats.
I used to cringe at this memory until I met someone who told me they got spectacularly drunk for the first time on a bottle of Brandavino at the age of 13 and the next morning caught the bus into the city. Quite soon after his journey began, he decided that vacating the bus immediately was a matter of great urgency. He rang the bell, the bus stopped, he got off the bus and vomited like a geyser by the side of the road. When he finished, he turned to find the bus, full of patient Saturday morning passengers, waiting for him. After a slightly awkward pause he wiped his mouth, got back on the bus, returned to his seat and continued on his way.
I ended up marrying him.
Losing our last chance embryo was almost shockingly upsetting, considering the yes but, no but sensations I had been experiencing leading all the way up to the transfer. Even so, receiving the news necessitated a certain response. That afternoon I ate a large meal of Not Recommended For Ladies Up The Duff sushi and followed that up with a Not Recommended For Ladies Attempting Or Achieving Up The Duffness latte and during the evening I enjoyed a Severely Frowned Upon glass of wine for the first time in what seemed years but was in fact a few fraught weeks.
The following day I had another latte but this time requested a double shot of espresso. That night C and I drank a bottle of champagne and two bottles of wine with our live in-in laws. I also ate some soft cheese and a piece of smoked salmon.
Following this trajectory I believe I shall be snorting coffee straight from the grinder and washing down my crack cocaine and raw meat fritters with a good slug of goon in the Woolies car park, by this weekend.
Because I am no longer a teenager and this is not the eighties I shall not be singing and dancing to Love Cats. It’s possible though that I may quietly hum the chorus.