I don’t remember my exact age… but I think I was around 7 years old. Which would make my sisters 15 and 18 at the time.
My sisters sometimes got stuck with me… teenage girls and a bratty younger brother ‘bothering them’ often ended in arguments and doors being slammed.
The famous words… “wait til mom gets home, you’re going to be in trouble”
HAHA. Yeh right,
On this particular fall evening, my parents went out… probably to get away from our crazy asses. And my sister(s) were left as the responsible party… I can’t remember if they were both there
I was sitting in a bean bag chair, a couple feet away from the TV. Jumping up to flip through the 20+ channels of our recently acquired cable TV (still no remote).
In between jumping up, I was running to the fridge to grab some snacks.
I finally found a movie to watch… Pete’s Dragon. The hero’s journey of the orphan boy, that finds his place with a new family with the help of his pet dragon….
The next time I went to the fridge, I grabbed a bottle that had been opened and I took a swig.
I went back to watch the movie. As the movie progressed, the journey of this boy was getting me excited, so I went and grabbed another swig from the bottle in the fridge.
My sister(s) were in their rooms, probably doing homework, or talking to boys, or smoking in their closets (LOL)… or just avoiding me.
I remember the movie ending, and I had fallen asleep on the bean bag.
At some point, my parents got home, and they were waking me up to put me to bed, but I was lethargic and groggy.
Simultaneous to this, my Dad opened the fridge and noticed that the bottle I had been drinking was considerably lower than when they left.
Now, panic and questioning of my sister(s) of what transpired during the few hours my parents were gone.
I vividly remember my mom calling poison control.
Their advice… Drink milk or Vomit.
I was now being force-fed Milk, by what seemed like gallons!
Drink More. Drink More Milk.
I don’t recall… but I think my sister(s) were laughing in between being yelled at.
The bottle I was drinking from turned out to be Lambrusco table wine.
My parents were not drinkers, they would have a glass of wine now and then. This bottle that was in the fridge had probably been in there for weeks opened with one glass missing from it.
I ended up drinking a couple glasses worth of wine, over the 2-hour movie, that night. The only reason that my parents noticed the bottle in the fridge is because I had left it towards the front, instead of buried in the back where it had been.
I’m not sure if it is the cinematic quality of the move, but I still have fond memories when I see Pete’s Dragon…
Although I do not have an addictive personality, that first sip when I was 7 years old turned into one of many great family stories we still laugh about during family gatherings.