Alcohol My Back Story
My first scrapes with alcohol came at a very early age. I grew up spending nearly every Friday with my grandma. Sleeping at her house then going into Leeds on a Saturday. This is where I first started seeing alcohol been consumed. Where most people in my life would sit and drink coffee or tea. My grandma would always have this pint pot filled with Guiness. I remember how much it used to stink and make me feel sick. The heavy creamy froth on top of the pot and the black tar like fluid under it. Yuk. Then there was my grandad every Saturday afternoon after he’d finished work would come home and take me and my brother up to the local pub or club to let off steam. So I grew up around going to pubs and clubs from an early age.
Fast forward to my teens. This is where we started to dabble in alcohol and cigarettes. In my area in mid 90’s it was rife with drink and drugs. Anything from canibis to heroin, alcohol pops to vodka. If we wanted to try it we could, see all ages had grown up together. So even at 12 or 13 we were hanging around with young adults 18-21 year olds. As the ages went up harder substances were been used and we saw it all growing up. See we had this youth club every Friday and we all grew up together numbers were massive in area on a Friday night. Could be 50-70 strong of youths ranging from 11-16 in area. As you got older you moved more from just going to youth club to more hanging around on the infamous tennis courts.
First Nightclub Experience
This was where one night I befriended this older lad in my area he asked if I wanted to go to a nightclub. I thought yes please 14 years old and going to a nightclub bring it on. The club we went to was near my high school, he said don’t fear the bouncers just walk in confident. I remember the walk still now, shaking like a shitting dog I was as I got closer to door. Anyway as he said we got in I paid my money and into club we headed. I couldn’t believe y eyes as we walked into bar area I saw people from my year group at school. Seemed everyone went here on a Friday, this became my new youth club.
So my drinking started growing from that date. I’d save money up from my many jobs, paper rounds and working in fish and chip shop. Then spend it on a Friday in the club, it also made me more popular with some of the cool kids at school. Ones who once before wouldn’t look at me twice. We’d be making plans about times to meet which pubs in area we could try and get served in like a massive game.
Then when we on family holidays I used to be allowed a drink in evening. One holiday I remember very vividly as that was possibly the one that made rest of my drinking downward cycle. I befriended this older lad who lived near resort we staying at. He asked my parents if I was allowed to go to a bar off complex. My parents agreed and to this club we headed, well at such a young age I could throw the drink down. Before I knew it we’d left this club and was on beach. An english girl I liked was there with some local Spanish lads playing spin the bottle.
We was invited to join, all innocent until this one lad went to kiss the girl I liked. I lost it went and cracked him remember been dragged off and told to run. where we was heading I don’t know I was drunk, all I recall was the sound of motorbikes racing round resort. Trying to sober myself up by dipping my baseball cap in pool and pouring it on my head. Then trying to find my apartment. Nota good night I felt so rough. Next morning on sobering up I found one of lads I was with apparently the Spanish were around resort all night with bike chains looking for me.
Last School years
Skip to me not really concentrating on last year or two of school. Even going into 6 form just as it was easier than getting a dead end job. Bunked out of there in first year. So what next.
I got offered an amazing job working in a sector I really wanted to be in repro graphic design. It’s a part of printing industry my family we’re all from printing trade. So here I am 17 in job I want a job for life. I start well I’m working my way up learning the in’s and out’s as you do starting as a junior. But drink would rear its head again.
My First Job
A guy in one of departments I went into said one lunch. I’m off down pub wanna join me. Yes I thought, off I headed and had a pint of lager. One hour lunch break headed back to work. Well that was it then every lunch we would do same I moved around learning my trade but the lunchtime drinking scene was rife within company. It soon lead to afterwork drinks then as well, I’d started making mistakes and then I was calling sick days. I became the go to guy at work as I could work in all departments that added extra pressure as I was also in a position where I was doing same as other guys with big work loads. It came to an head when a week where a simple job I couldn’t get right and I quit the job.
So im 21 no job and wheres best place to start my freedom oh yes the pub, well thats what i did until the money ran out at least, but problem is I’m in debt as whenever i needed money in past i could just walk into bank and get a top up on my loan well this option has gone I’m out of work and skint. so best go find some work luckily i knew someone that needed a labourer but pay was crap. so that brand new car id bought when i was working had to be sold got no where near what i wanted for it but had to clear some debts. it didn’t clear them by any means and the job i got was only giving me enough money to just use as beer tokens and put fuel in the banger of a car i bought. This job didn’t last too long around 10 months in total, this was due to my brother been out of work, bright idea of mine i decided to quit the crappy paid job and start up a landscaping business with my brother, it was early 2000’s and money was easy to loan so credit cards i had got hammered i bankrolled the whole business buying materials and not taking a wage it all went on credit so did my alcohol. We lasted working together for around 18 months and i decided i couldn’t live on not pulling a wage so i let the business go to my brother and he’s still running it.
so at the ripe old age of 24 I’m at home on the dole collecting around £65 a week and going to dole office every week, was a good period though as i got all my debts reduced to minimum payments and was managing to even still get to pub on a evening and weekend. Even the going to dole office was a bit of an holiday tho as they were on a lot of strikes in this period so there was times when i didn’t see anyone for weeks at a time, this enabled me to just sit at home and be miserable i had nothing at this point no car no money not even wanting to work this life was too easy. There was times when i did want to work so i would put in a shift but only 16 hours to make sure i kept being able to collet my whopping £65 every week. Then comes the bombshell I’m nearly 2 years into collecting the dole and government decide to make a few changes anyone who had been out of work over 18 months had to go to a thing called back to work school. This was a ball ache 2 months to find a job or your dole stops, 2 months of going everyday into a classroom and look at same jobs everyday. was really mind numbing only thing to look forward to was that drink afterwards, also the odd bet at lunch break, none of us wanted to be there but it was here or no money for beer, were coming up to end of my 2 months and I’m not finding work then one day i told a tutor that i had a license to drive she said “why didn’t you say before I’ve loads of opportunities ” so almost on the last day of me getting signed off i got an interview. Off i went and i was offered the job driving to pick up empty ink cartridges it was a steady little number was getting paid an ok wage and it was just over xmas period, i was loving the work no pressure and then BOMBSHELL february got pulled into offiice one night to be told that work was quiet and they would have to let me go, they gave me a nice cash send off so i went and got steaming. Luckily it was the place where where plenty of workmen went on a teatime, well one of lads needed a driver labourer to go with one of other lads i knew to work up and down country fitting gutters job offer £350 a week, well i had no ties needed to get away and live away from the pub i was going to every night this was a chance to prove myself i thought.
So first week comes 4.00am start at the lads house weeks worth of clothes packed and off i go to London, sleep all way down there as was hungover from our usual Sunday session, we just about get to london and i wake up i feel like crap, we arrive at this site a bloody mansion where we have to use a 6 tonne cherry picker to just reach gutter level the job goes well finish around 5 on an evening back to digs and get showered, go down for tea and then a few beers sleep and up at 6 to start it again and repeat, this was same till Friday when we had to be offsite early to get back for our Friday afternoon pissup after our wages go in. This job goes really well for around three months but the lack of sleep and drinking everynight and all weekend takes its toll on me in mental state i start making mistakes this infuriates my work colleague, he was a hot head so the odd little things i’d been doing wrong culminated one day and i ended up quitting you see a pattern emerging here ?? well it continues away from work the pattern but that comes in a few years time.
To Be Continued ……………………………..