I'm feeling a bit cheated today. On Saturday night I went to a party in a night club for my friends' joint birthdays, with live music courtesy of the birthday boy and his various bands. It was a fantastic night and as I had the DDs with me, plus I had a lot to do on Sunday, I deliberately only had two drinks (and a sneaky little vodka jelly) then switched to juice. As a further precaution, I downed a paracetamol with my Horlicks (rock and roll) when I dragged my tired dancing feet to bed at 1am and felt absolutely sober.
Then I woke up on Sunday morning feeling like cr*p, and wasted the day curled up on the sofa only emerging mid afternoon for chips.
After testing my recollection of the conversation in the cab home (I clearly recall giving my friend advice on how to use a drill, much to the amusement of the cabbie) and accepting my assurance that I wasn't drunk at all DD1, who has been learning about alcohol abuse at school, wisely suggested my drink had been spiked. Good point, I say except I didn't put it down plus it was a vodka alcopop thing in a small necked bottle (pretty revolting now I think about it, but the wine on offer was Leib... ).
I think it's more likely that I'm just out of practise. I have not had a proper social life for a long time so I tend to only really drink at home and only occasionally. I have a bit of a fear of drinking alone though, worrying that I'll wake up with my head in the cat food after having one too many so I recently started a book club. I now have a captive audience to drink with once a month and very well that's going too. We've even read some books.
If I'm honest, there are a couple of reasons for my lack of social life:
1) The DDs. By the time I've paid a sitter, a cab, a couple of rounds, we're talking half the weekly food bill. Not gonna happen. Admittedly I get one night off a week for good behaviour, but that leads me to...
2) Lack of available company. My close circle of friends are mostly married and cosy on a Friday or Saturday night. The few friends I have who like to party are hard core and I can't keep up with them. Which leads me to the saddest reason:
3) I really like hunkering down on the sofa when the kids have gone for the evening watching what I want on TV, or having a bath without having running conversations from their bedrooms. I adore my children with every breath, but if they made talking an Olympic sport, the DDs would be on the podium arguing over who deserved gold. Sometimes I just need silence. I crave it. Plus, I love my little house. Considering I get home from work at the same time as the kids I just like to enjoy it on my terms for a couple of hours.
The DDs want me to go out more, not least of all because they are nagging me to find a boyfriend. Unfortunately for them, I'm really not bothered. For the first time in my adult life, I'm enjoying the alone time and I'm getting to know me again (how very Oprah). Perhaps one day I will like the idea of sharing my precious quiet time with someone but as the next man in my life must meet the DDs strict criteria I think my peace and chardonnay are fairly safe. On a long car journey recently the DDs announced, with no prompting from me, their requirements for my next partner. He must:
1) Have children the same ages as them.
2) Drive a big car (for holidays apparently)
3) Own the following pets: dog, house rabbit, tortoise.
So I guess the ideal scenario for us all would be for me to meet a slightly agoraphobic Dr Dolittle with a camper van. But, thankfully, unless he's the postman or the Tesco delivery guy, the chances of me meeting him are about as remote as me never having another hangover.