You may have noticed that I wasn’t around yesterday.
Every year on the Sunday of the August Bank Holiday, our local Thai restaurant hosts a free barbecue for the regular customers. It is a very nice thing for them to do, and much appreciated by the people in the area. When you get the invitation, it does make you feel that you are a lot more than just another customer, that’s for sure. We have only missed one year, when we had to attend a wedding, and we always look forward to it.
We set off as usual yesterday, having arranged to meet a group of friends in the garden surrounding the restaurant. It was a very hot afternoon, and attendance was the highest we have seen. Luckily, it is close enough for us to walk there, so we didn’t have to worry about parking, or a designated driver. Our friends had brought a large picnic blanket, and a good supply of folding chairs too. We were sitting around enjoying the food and convivial atmosphere, soaking up the welcome sunshine on that very warm afternoon.
Over the course of time, quite a few of us had a bit too much to drink. I had finished a bottle of red wine at a fair speed, and some were mixing drinks too, switching from cider and beer to wine, then back again. Everyone asked why we had not brought Ollie, so I decided to walk back and get him. By the time I returned with the dog, much to the delight of all there, especially a young girl, it was apparent that most of the adults had been carrying on drinking, as the merriment was increasing. I should have bought a bottle of water, and moved the chair into the shade. But that would have been sensible, and people drinking alcohol are rarely sensible.
So, I went inside and bought more wine, returning to my chair in the full afternoon sun. Others had progressed to strong liqueurs, and sparking wine too. It was all very jolly, and one friend suggested that we should all go to her house and continue the party. Lifts could be arranged with a phone call, from people who were not there, and would be happy to help. As we started to pack away, it was immediately apparent that a few of us were far from capable of moving on anywhere. Moving at all was a challenge, as the combination of hot sun, and too much booze finally took effect.
At that stage of the proceedings, my mind stopped remembering anything. But it went something like this.
With some difficulty, I did manage to walk home, assisted by Julie, who was rather squiffy herself. She had to cope with me, and Ollie on his lead too. I was walking in the style familiar to anyone who has ever had too much to drink. One step to the side, one step back, then a lurch forward. It took me at least three tries to complete one forward step. At some point close to home, I fell into a neighbour’s front garden. Two houses later, I fell onto the lawn of the garden next door. Once inside the house, I collapsed across a rug on the living room floor, and fell into a very deep sleep.
Later on, Julie tells me it was around 8 pm, I decided to get up off of the floor, and go to bed. That wasn’t going to be easy, and resulted in me falling heavily onto the steel wood-burning stove, bashing the back of my head, and cutting it in two places. Of greater concern, was the fact that I managed to move the stove on its stand, gouging a chunk of plaster out of the living room wall. With Julie helping me get out of my clothes, I managed to crash into bed, where I stayed until almost 9 this morning.
As I woke up, some flashes of memory restored many of the worst parts of the previous afternoon, including the fall against the stove. I gingerly examined the damage. A left thumb that feels as if it was removed, and then reattached. Painful ribs all along the left side, from contact with the neighbour’s frontage, and those two small cuts on the back of my head, sitting proudly atop small bruised swellings. But as I only had the same thing to drink during that session, I was spared a hangover, at least.
That’s why I wasn’t answering comments yesterday. 🙂