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Was it the drinking goggles or age-related brain cell depletion that made me think that I could swill frozen Margaritas, served in glasses the size of goldfish bowls, without consequence?

I’m certain I only had two, but eyewitnesses swear it was three. All I remember is that by 11pm, time began to stand still and I stopped counting drinks and calorie. I then proceeded to gabble incoherently into whatever obliging ear would tolerate me.

An inebriated middle-aged woman, who thinks she can simultaneously slurp a Margarita and ingest a steaming plate of tacos, should never provide the entertainment for the evening. At the point where the melted cheese/salsa ‘combo’ began dribbling erroneously down one of my chins, I spotted the furtive ‘code red’ sign between my friends and husband, symbolising that it was time to ‘get her out of here’. The SWAT team duly arrived and I was extracted from the premises by 11.15pm, before further embarrassment.

In my previous life, I would have knocked back three cocktails getting ready, and another en route to the venue, but these days, two pitiful units of alcohol reduces me to a semi-vegetative state. Slurring words, spilling friends drinks and missing the toilet while trying to alleviate some of the excess fluid circulating my already bloated body, are all behaviors synonymous with my transition from party girl to drunken mess.

So in hindsight, the decision to paint the town red at a new and hip Mexican eatery should have triggered alarm bells. It is, after all, written in the Mexican book of folklore that Tequila takes no hostages. Where, in my excitement, did I forget my golden rule of  stopping at three units, possibly four if I remember to line my stomach with goats milk and hose it intermittently with tanks of water? That rule is there to protect me and was instigated around my fortieth birthday when my alcoholic tolerance first went AWOL. I obviously ignored it. Although I only indulged in two ‘buckets’ of Margarita, with the addition of the gin and tonic ‘pre’ and a couple of cheap and nasty white wine chasers, my head never really stood a chance.

My complete lack of disregard for my well-being is disappointing on a personal level. The discipline required to cut back on alcohol in my new approach towards living longer, has been far easier to achieve than curtailing my food cravings. I’m not some masochist who gets a thrill out of hangovers, (which are now tantamount to being hit over the head with a cricket bat, repeatedly); whereas I still get an orgasmic thrill from the first bite of a passion fruit macaroon for dessert.

I did search the web vainly for a cure for my ‘intolerance’ initially, which is, I’ve discovered, as bona-fide a medical condition as being allergic to bee stings and kiwi fruit. Begging the question of when exactly this condition is going to be taken seriously enough for the pharmaceutical companies to invest in an EpiPen to counteract the symptoms?

My initial research pointed to the tannins in Chardonnay as the possible culprit, so in my desperation to carry on drinking like a real adult (as opposed to ‘the designated driver’), I explored some alternative beverages. Unfortunately, alternative therapies often fail to deliver in terms of a solution, although the treatment is pleasant enough; sadly, my cure does not lie with over-priced white wines, spirits, or even Champagne.

So my decision on Saturday was a brave one, some might even say an impulsive, potentially fatal one that was borne out of a need to re-discover my party-girl roots. The old man says that I shouldn’t need alcohol to augment my personality, my outlook is immature, and that our days of new friendships evolving out of alcoholic consumption competitions are over. Meanwhile, the ‘inner circle’ have been vocal in congratulating me for not vomiting, on Facebook.

Red on Green photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com (Bachpics)

Coctail photo courtesy of http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

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