Good morning, Baltimore

Yesterday was a booze-filled day, though none of it my own. The male guests I’m with started the day dreadfully hungover. “Your way is the best way,” one said. Duh. I felt their pain and panic of having to get through that long part of the day where you’re not supposed to drink. Of course I would have just drank.

It’s been over a year since my last drink, but still I got that panicky feeling at dinner when they were pouring wine and I wasn’t sure what to do with my glass. Turn it upside down? Cover it with my hand? Throw it on the floor and stomp with an empathetic no way, mother fucker? These are the times I feel like the only non-drinker in the world. A misfit, an outcast.

One of my dinner companions commented that I did nothing to help them kill two bottles of wine (amateurs). Because he seemed genuinely interested, I expanded on my usual I don’t drink and said I once loved drinking, but then it turned bad for me. Sometimes I miss it, I admitted, but I’m much better off without. Then we bellied up to the bar where I had a seltzer and then went to bed because fuckit, seltzer isn’t beer.

This morning I ran along the inner harbor of Baltimore. The air was cool and crisp and hinted at autumn. I had been nervous about running in a strange city, but I needn’t have been. The path was wide and open and if I’d felt like trying 6 miles, I could have done a loop around Fort McHenry and its replica of the giant flag that inspired the Star Spangled Banner. Oh well. Next year.

I wanted to take a picture of the harbor or even how my funny shadow made it look like I was running on stilts, but I never run with my phone. This is what Baltimore looks like from safely inside a hotel. Still pretty pretty.

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12 thoughts on “Good morning, Baltimore

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  1. So glad you got out there to run. It sounds absolutely beautiful. (be sure you are running with some sort of id! or get a little spi belt for your waist- perfect for phones. Yes, I am preaching here. šŸ˜‰ ) I have my long run today; 17 miles on the plan. I’m a little nervous (in a good way), that will be my longest ever.

    Those wine waiters should be commissioned sales people; I’ve never met a more tenacious group of folks. They don’t like to take no for an answer, and they have short memories. I’m always tempted to scream, “WHAT PART OF “ALCOHOLIC” DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND???”

    And now I have that Counting Crows song “Raining in Baltimore” stuck in my head:
    “There’s things I remember and things I forget, I miss you, I guess that I should”

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  2. i love running in new places, finding views and buildings and parks that i’d never find just as a tourist walking around. and thanks to RoS i know have that song in my head, too! enjoy your time there šŸ™‚ great great photo šŸ™‚

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  3. Oh isn’t it the best to be up and fresh and running and seeing others hungover and being so grateful that’s not you? Happy fresh mornings out running. One of the best reasons not to drink.

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  4. I hate that awkward panicky feeling! Hate it! It’s only at that moment of pouring, when that frisson of excitement used to be felt (by me) at the arrival of alcohol. Now I get all weird and awkward .. thankfully it passes once everyone is away with their drinking. You made me laugh – I will think about stomping on my glass with a ‘No Way Mother Fucker’ next time!

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  5. Good for you. A good explanation too for the interested party. It does get easier although still now I do panic as a waiter starts to walk around the table sometimes

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  6. I have really grown thick skin over the years. I yam what I yam – if someone is shallow enough to inquire why i’m not joining the ‘real’ fellowhip of the gathering, I say, “I’m an alcoholic”.. that generally shuts them up – for we still, in this year of 2012, carry a stigma when we claim ownership of our disease. I prefer associating with people who can conceptualize the integrity and character it requires to work a diligent program and maintain healthy sobriety,.

    wtg on abstaining – you must of given yourself twenty atta-girls that next morning as the hung-over crew stumbled around.

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  7. I love Baltimore. Many fond memories from college days at UMD…sigh. All boozy memories, of course.

    It’s funny though. My last time at the Inner Harbor was after I was married and booze wasn’t working properly anymore. I drank but it didn’t feel right. Sad.

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