My son, Sam, is home from California with his girlfriend, Kim, for 10 days. Our visit has been spent sightseeing, relaxing and making autumnal culinary delights at home. The temptation to indulge in alcohol has been pretty minimal as neither of them is much of a drinker. Retreating to Burlington, Vermont to visit Sam’s old UVM haunts, take in the fall foliage and eat good food, the road took a more challenging turn.
We arrived at The Vermont Hotel and got checked in. Quickly pounding the pavement, we explored Church Street, the University of Vermont and dined at our old favorite lunch spot, Magnolia. One of the main reasons that we made this trip was to see Sam’s old roommate, Anna. As students, Sam and Anna lived together for 2 years. Having new significant others in their lives since the days at UVM, it was nice that they could all meet each other at this point in time and catch up.
As the night began, I joined Sam and his friends for a round of drinks and then sent them off to dine without me. I returned to my room and watched a few innings of baseball payoffs. Being a Red Sox fan is great right now because they are doing so well. I discovered however that it’s kind of lame to be sitting in my hotel room alone. Convincing myself that it is okay to go to the bar to eat without buying a drink to watch the game, I made my way downstairs.
The scene was very friendly and being in Vermont, there were a lot of Red Sox fans in the bar. A couple of gentlemen sitting next to me even chatted me up about the team and one shared his best Red Sox memory. In high school he and his dad actually attended the turning point game 4 of the ALCS against the Yankees in 2004. You know, the Dave Roberts pinch runner game where Papi hits the walk-off home run and the Red Sox dominate the series from that point forward and go on to win the World Series for the first time in 86 years? Continue reading
This week I became really sick and tired of the dry year. I started playing around with the title “Six Dry Months” thinking maybe I’ve had enough. These thoughts and a mood of displeasure and general grouchiness was brought on by the events that were planned for the weekend. It was my 10 year wedding anniversary with Philip, and we had some really fun stuff on the calendar; ballgames with family at Fenway Park, a fancy lunch in Boston and a couple of days in Maine. Partaking in beer at the Red Sox game and drinks at our anniversary lunch weighed heavily on my mind.
It is interesting to me to observe the justification for quitting this experiment that emerged as a result of the circumstances. I began to tell myself that I was really done, and there was nothing left to think about or explore in the blog. I questioned the value of my writing and decided that I would just be boring my readers (whom I can count on one hand) with my repetitive droning on about the same old thing. Although I know from experience that there is aways another way to look at things and plenty more to say, at that moment, the part of me that wanted to give up was speaking louder than the creative/inspired mind. I rode out this wave of negativity, temporarily.
Next up was the excuse, “I have learned everything I need to learn from this experience and it is unnecessary to go on with my vow of alcohol abstinence.” Speaking with my sister-in-law on the way to dinner in Boston, I expressed my feelings of being frustrated and bored with not drinking. I knew that the adults would be ordering some wine at the cute little bistro we had selected for a pre-game dinner, and I wanted to have some too. (Can you hear my foot stomping on the pavement?) I explained to anyone who would listen that I had started the blog/experiment because I was worried that I had a problem (addiction) and I have since come to terms with what was happening. Yes, I used alcohol as a coping mechanism (Don’t we all have something?) and I have realized that I am not an alcoholic…just someone who developed a habit of having a drink or two at night to help calm the day. So…end of story, right? I have my answer. I have made some changes to the stress levels in my life to better manage my habits. So why keep doing this?
Although I resisted having a drink that night at dinner or the game, I woke up with the notion that I’d give myself a pass at lunch and order wine or a martini. Thought: I won’t give this up completely. Surely, it is understandable that I could have a drink at this milestone anniversary. So I ran this idea passed Philip.