Country Living with Francis Farragher
Here we are on the cusp of another Christmas party season and with each passing year my resolve strengthens not to endure even one hangover over the festive season. It’s something I’ve chosen to replace New Year resolutions with – the desire to avoid self-inflicted bouts of ill-health, but of course there’s always many’s the slip between cup and lip.
We Irish do have a curious relationship with the ‘old demon’ and now by the strict letter of the law, whenever I partake of three slowly consumed pints, I am apparently guilty of a binge.
With the passing of the years, three now seems to be the perfect ‘safe consumption’ number where you can meet all your kindred souls, discuss the merits and faults of our politicians, speculate about another All-Ireland win, or moan about the wet weather we’ve just endured . . . without paying a heavy price the following morning.
Sticking with three means no little ‘hammer man’ beating just above the right eye in the morning; no reluctance to leave the scratcher at the designated time; and no feeling that this world is beginning to get us down.
The ‘three rule’, though, will come under inordinate pressure over the coming weeks and will undoubtedly be flouted on a few occasions, until some morning I get the gentle reminder that there really isn’t any great fun in struggling for a day just for a few hours of extra-merriment.
How those of us in the ‘drinking classes’ have managed to survive events like weddings down through the years is quite baffling.
In cold sobriety think about it. Maybe start off with a few drinks in the local, a couple of more before the meal, a ‘shot’ of wine at the table, a massive meal to follow, a bit of ‘lepping’ around the dancefloor afterwards and another array of pints before staggering off to be bed at some ungodly hour of the morning.
It really is something of a massive survival test for any body of over 40 Summers and it actually takes quite a bit of figuring out, how, 24 hours on from the experience, our minds and bodies do return to something approaching normality.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.