Meet Drunk and Drunker

The lure of grape from local vineyards was slightly on my radar on a recent trip to Virginia with my husband Sean. One night in particular, we found ourselves around a fire pit at our resort. I assured Sean I didn’t mind if he had a drink around the fire, although I had a passing moment of desire.

But, I didn’t want to break my non-drinking streak. A few years ago I decided that alcohol was doing nothing good for my body and mind. I said goodbye to the drink and (mostly) haven’t looked back.

We checked with a nearby couple to make sure we weren’t stealing their space. They assured us it was not their fire, and we invited them to join us. But, being COVID season, they politely, and appropriately, begged off.

Soon after, another couple could be heard approaching from far away. They came barreling toward our fire and asked if they could join us. They pulled up chairs before we could respond, drinks spilling out of their hands as they plopped down.

The gray-haired man in a too-tight white tee explained inside of a minute that he was a government contractor. Before long we knew the story of how the couple first met, their current living situation, and just how much they needed “another goddamn drink.” The man asked what type of wine Sean was drinking and proceeded to go to the front desk to demand a bottle. He tipped the employee who brought the wine to our fire pit and bragged to us that he can pay anyone to do anything.

The waiflike woman watched her partner intently with legs crossed and one platform shoe wildly swinging. She popped up once to say that she is not just an average event planner, but that she works with “thome very pamous feople.” Then, she asked what I was drinking, and I explained I was drinking club soda.

“You’re not drinking?” she slurred, as the man kept telling us all about his ultimate dream to live in a pod in African desert. She interrupted a command to Sean: “Put a drink in your mouth and then kiss her and put it in hers!” Sean and I just looked at each other and laughed.

Well into the story of the man’s life, Sean and I excused ourselves to the restroom. On our rendezvous, we decided we needed to extricate ourselves from Drunk and Drunker – now!

We went back prepared to say our goodbyes as the man launched into yet another story about himself. I stifled the Samuel L. Jackson quote from Pulp Fiction: “I don’t remember asking you a goddamn thing!”

As he spoke, the woman’s head started bobbing up and down, and she started moaning, “I need to go to bed.” The man looked at her briefly but didn’t miss a beat, so engrossed was Narcissus in his tale. Sean and I watched the woman slowly but surely power down until she was passed out in the chair. We then both said to the man, “You need to get her to bed.” He said, “Uh, yah, okay,” and we made our escape.

It’s nights like this that remind me I’m on the right track.

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