CHARLES GRAHAM - A refreshing break from the booze
Well, I made it.
The equivalent of Dry January (I say equivalent as I had to over-run into the first week of this month because there was a delayed start) has been successfully negotiated, although not without a few temptations.
Do I feel any better?
No, not particularly in the physical sense. Neither have I lost any weight, which is more of an annoyance.
But there are of course upsides. For a start I got a buzz from the smug virtuousness of it all and the fact that I managed to complete the course without a single lapse.
And while I can’t feel or see any obvious physical benefits, there is no doubting that giving my liver a good break will have been well worthwhile.
Then there is the money I’ve saved by drinking water and lemonade rather than ale and red wine, whether at home or in the pub.
And, before our local temporarily closed for a change of management, I must say my pool-playing improves (although that’s not saying much) when not a drop passes my lips.
Tomorrow should be the day that I break my alcoholic fast and, inveterate tee-totallers will be sad to hear, I am very much looking forward to it. I am hoping that this dry period though will have trained my body to be happy with a smaller intake than that which preceeded it.
Goodness knows, I’ve published enough stories from the medical experts over the years saying that Wiganers are drinking too much and that liver and heart diseases linked to liquor - and indeed fatalities - are on the rise.
It’s the people who started drinking in the 1980s and ’90s who are now paying the price in their 50s and 60s.
A body can only take so much punishment - no matter how big and robust you might look - and the thing is the liver can take all sorts without giving the toper any signs of distress. It’s only when doctors start running tests on the organ that its true state can be discovered.
As I pointed out last year, our younger citizens are setting a rather better example and drinking far less than their forbears with many abstaining altogether.
Should this prevail into middle age then they should be better set for pensionerhood than my generation are - unless they are compensating for the lack of booze with overdoses of sugary and fatty foods.
So back on the pop tomorrow, but moderation is the watch word.