Lent: the halfway point
By Dana Fowles
Today marks the third week of Lent and therefore my third week of being a teetotal student (a species unheard of until now). That’s right ladies and gentlemen; I Dana Fowles have not touched a single drop of alcohol for 21 days. Pinky promise.
As expected, the journey to the halfway point has not been easy. I have encountered several temptations, which I have just about managed to overcome. I must admit that passing through Sainsbury’s everyday has resulted in wistful browsing of the wine displays every now and again. In my desperation to have a glass of something nice with tea (or dinner to those in the other camp), I have found myself contemplating whether Bucks Fizz really counts as alcohol. However, as it clearly lists ‘white wine’ as an ingredient on the label, I have had to force myself to be strong and relocate to the fruit juices.
A low point, it is time to confess, has been playing pretend by drinking the aforementioned fruit juices out of wine glasses and even champagne flutes. It has been a difficult time, not helped by one particular housemate. Jake (whom you may recognise as the fashion editor) has taken on the role of the serpent in the Garden of Eden on more than one occasion. Before going to a house party, he recently slithered into my room with ‘water’ (vodka) and encouraged me to have a sip.
What’s more, last week at the Unity charity fashion show (unfortunately held at 256), he said and I quote: ‘Just have a glass of wine. You without a glass of wine in your hand is like me suddenly not caring about what I wear anymore – unnatural.’ Again I managed to resist and enquired as to whether the girl at the bar could make me a non-alcoholic cocktail (which was actually pretty nice in all honesty).
Although I have missed being able to have a drink at times, I am not sorry to have left behind the hangovers from hell. It turns out that there are some benefits to going teetotal. For one, I feel a lot more organised. Whereas I would have wasted a day here and there in order to nurse myself back to health after a heavy night, I am now making the most of every 24 hours. I feel more active; I haven’t eaten a single takeaway since I embarked on the challenge and I have started going swimming regularly, as well as getting up early on weekends to crack on with the never ending pile of books to read and essays to write.
I may have spoken too soon, however. The biggest temptation yet still awaits me. My best friend from home and one of her housemates are due to visit in two days time. This could spell the end of my non-alcoholic cocktail drinking days, only time will tell.