As a child I was raised to respect alcohol by my liberal minded parents. We always drank wine with our Sunday lunch and celebrated special occasions with alcohol. Don’t get me wrong they did not let me partake too much but I came very close on many occasion when they weren’t watching the bottle. 😀
One such event happened on New Years Eve when I was about eleven or twelve years old. My father was away I recall, either for work of family reasons, not sure which. But both my mother and I were in the house on our own on this particular eve.
The clock approached the hour of midnight and I was trying hard not to fall asleep whilst laying on the sofa watching the revelry and partying taking place on television as was the tradition. There has always been a Hogmanay show on television for as long as I remember. The earliest ones were hosted by Andy Williams I think. Is he still alive?
Anyway. The clock struck twelve and everyone on the television raised their glasses to us the viewing public and wished a “Happy New Year”. Most of the people on the show must have been well stewed by the time 12 o clock came round as the show usually started about 10 o clock and probably continued well in to the “wee hours”. 😉
My mother disappeared off in to the kitchen and returned just as the last chime rang out from Big Ben. She was clutching the largest bottle of Champagne I had ever seen. It looked like we were having the whole neighbourhood round for a celebratory drink. “Your dad left us this to bring in the New Year”, she smiled at me. “Wow”, I replied in a mesmerised voice. It was the largest bottle of Champagne I had ever seen. Did I tell you that already? Lol.
She popped the cork which hit the ceiling and made a lovely dint which we all pointed at for the next few months reminiscing (you will find out why in a moment, be patient!) until the day dad relented to mum’s demand, filling the dent and repainting the ceiling. There are only so many times you can point up at the ceiling and make fun of Suze…
Got you all wondering why now, haven’t I?…
…Ok, I give in. Whilst mum was pouring the first glass the telephone rang. It was my father calling to wish us both a Happy New Year. “Suze, come and wish your dad a Happy New Year”, mum called out from the phone. I went to the telephone and wished him rather begrudgingly as I recall, Happy New Year, through gritted teeth. I was both angry and upset that he couldn’t be with us on this of all evenings.
I blew a kiss to him down the receiver and left my mother talking to him. Meanwhile there was some Champagne waiting for me in the lounge. The first glass went down a little slow, the bubbles and the taste I guess. One has to acquire a taste for the good stuff. 😀 This meant I had to pour another just to see if the taste was beginning to grown on me. It did and this prompted me to pour another and another and…
You can guess the rest. My mother returned from her phone call and I was as pissed as a fart. I think she guessed I was drunk quite quickly, as I was dancing to bagpipe music. Not my normal choice of music to get down to. “Have you been drinking this while I have been gone?”, she asked as she picked up the bottle to check out just how many times I had celebrated on my own.
I’m not sure how much I had but it felt great. I had boundless energy and felt like I was walking on clouds. My dancing eventually stopped and things began to slow down after mum took the bottle away from me. Climbing the stairs to bed was hilarious I remember to this day laughing like an idiot all the way up and in to bed. Not so the next morning. I had a stonking great headache and stayed in bed until I felt better. Mid afternoon I think.