Is it Gin O'clock yet?
If someone had come up to me fifteen years ago and told me I’d be drinking Gin and tonic on a regular basis I would have slapped them round the face with a halibut.
Gin and tonic? That’s a SAD, OLD, MUM’S DRINK! I would have exclaimed. All my childhood memories are peppered with memories of my Mum drinking Gin and tonic. She would usually walk into a room in the afternoon (carrying some random mess that she was ferrying into another location) and exclaim – ‘Can someone tell me if it’s GIN O’ CLOCK yet?’ I’d look at her blankly. This would never be my fate. Gin indeed!
In my mind if it was a person Gin would be a middle aged woman in a Per Una cardie and dodgy sandals. If it was a radio show it would be Steve Wright’s Sunday Love Songs. It was a bit sad.
In the nineties, I’d drunk pints. I’d worn combat pants, Buffalo trainers and had two-tone hair. Drinking beer was part of the Brit Pop scene. Girls were boys and all that. Gin and Tonic was still that frumpy old woman trying to do the twist at a Wedding.
As I grew older, I went through a phase of drinking wine. Or at least tried to drink wine but mainly throwing up. Red wine rarely agrees with me. The problem is that it’s VERY EASY to get the quantities wrong. One glass – okay. Two – still okay. Four glasses or more you’re taken to a dark place. You wake up feeling like an old dish rag (of course this is true of all alcohol but I find the self-loathing particularly bad with wine).
Anyway once I became a parent I felt lost. What about going back to beer? DBut drinking a pint in the pub with a small child didn’t feel right. I also burp a lot. It’s not attractive to be a giant woman/ toddler is it? Anyway the whole ladette thing wasn’t relevant anymore.
So the Gin and Tonic wafted into my field of vision. With it’s nice refreshing connotations. It’s super-drinkable quality. I started to notice that all my friends were drinking it (when they weren’t drinking procecco). The end of the day. The perfect ‘me moment’. It was back in fashion. On Instagram I was bedazzled by beautiful shots of G&T’s being held up into the sunlight. Was it becoming cool?
In the mid- eighteenth century, gin abuse was so widespread that in London alone they discovered that the average Londoner drank 14 gallons a year! (Whilst I read this I tried to work out how much the average Mum drinks nowadays- it might even be close to this?) Gin was cheaper than wine and so everyone drank it. It wasn’t very aspirational back then but look at it now! HIGH FIVE GIN! HIGH FIVE!
Bringing us back to the present day and it’s currently two forty in the pm and I am starting to feel on edge. I have broken a new photo frame by stepping on it, then stabbed myself in the arm whilst trying to get it into a giant carrier bag. I’ve watched a flea jump onto my hand whilst making my daughter’s bed. I’ve navigated two sizeable tantrums. After the second of these tantrums, I calmly refilled the ice tray. I then checked there was tonic water in the fridge ready ( this particular one is from Tesco and has cucumber in it- Gin purists look away now).
When the clock chimes five my mouth will be hovering above the glass. At five thirty I will no doubt pour another. I will wonder why I never discovered gin earlier.
From forgetting to what I’m saying in the middle of a sentence, through to trying to frame pictures on a hot, sweaty day and then breaking them through sheer frustration- I have become my Mum.
IS IT GIN O’ CLOCK YET?
There are worse things that could happen to me I guess.