It would appear that I have found the key to my drinking survival. I didn’t drink too much during the day, had a part share in a couple of bottles of wine, had plenty of water alongside that and, because of a particularly talkative after-dinner speaker, had enforced non-drinking for an hour or so because we forgot to go the bar in time. The speaker (should you ever be organising a sportsmans dinner or some such) was ex-rugby league and current rugby union referee Karl Kirkpatrick and it pains me to say it (especially if he Googles himself and he strikes me as being the sort who would) but he was absolutely brilliant. I would put him on a par with the year that we had Robbie Hunter-Paul as a guest, although Robbie gets bonus points for the topless haka that he performed and I suspect that should Karl have done that, it wouldn’t have got the ladies half as melty. Sorry Karl. Anyway, after he’d finished the raffle and the stand up bingo, I managed to put a decent dent in the hotel’s stock of Disaronno and was remarkably compos mentis as I made my way to bed at 3.00.
One of the strangest points in the evening occurred when I was having a bit of a misty eyed reminisce about rugby do’s past and I found myself thinking “yes, but what I really want these days is the feeling of doing a good 10 miler”. At this point I began to suspect that I wasn’t as sober as I had first thought.
However, as I’ve managed to get through today without my usual after-Blackpool nap and I had the pleasure of listening to Pilgrim (Radio Four’s afternoon play on Thursday and for the next three Thursdays), I set off for a very enjoyable run on an extendable 7 mile loop. I felt happy and strong and comfortable, so I added on a half mile and another and another until I had done 11 miles. I suspect that I may hurt in the morning and my eyes are becoming scratchy, but for now I am happy.