Beware that brave voice in your head that makes you do silly things for love
I have a great relationship with alcohol.
I know exactly which line not to cross on my 450ml crystal wine glass.
I manage to stay up all night without craving a single drop of alcohol beverage. This discipline became a great vice in my youth as friends would task me with driving duties whenever city lights called us out at ungodly hours.
I do, however, house an unrepentant alcoholic deep in my brain's prefrontal cortex. Yes, a whole community of characters with varying degrees of idiocy and lunacy reside in my head - and none is more colourful than the resident drunkard.
She is an inebriated hooligan with two good teeth. I do not know her name but I am quite familiar with her sharp tongue. She sounds something like a Brenda Fassie who dropped out of Harvard mid-semester.
I learned some time ago to never dare take my cue from this particular voice, especially after drinking dry red wine on a hot summer's afternoon.
While having introspective conversations with myself, I remembered I had a suitor who lived within a reasonable distance to me. He hadn't made contact for some time and I missed being pursued. It happens.
He was employed, with no known wife and drove a red Golf GTI. His height was objectionable but he kept a full beard as compensation. I liked him. That voice in my head started whispering directions to his home. "Gulp one last glass of the Merlot, put on your stilettos and go remind him that you are still interesting. Go now!" So I did.
As I parked near the gate, I was still soaking up dense instructions from the miscreant in my head.
"Do not take off your sunglasses, doll. Your blood-alcohol level is welling in your eyes. Walk up there and get your man," she encouraged. There was a narrow concrete staircase leading up to the front door - a typical geography in Durban townships and an intense challenge for a drunken girl wearing shades.
I knocked about 18 times. My balance at the time was as good as having two wine bottles for legs. So I leaned over and held on to the wall along the door frame.
My left arm rested on my tiny waist for composure, while my ankles were shaking from the discomfort of high heels. It was a Sunday afternoon and I looked like I had just woken up from a beer crate at a tavern.
Not even the strong afternoon breeze could blow off the stench of my burp before a lady holding a baby opened the door. I knew she was around my age but I greeted her with a "Sawubona, Mama" because I liked this guy and didn't want him to have a wife.
I had no idea what else to say or do. So I consulted the fearless dispo upstairs. "Ask for the loo and peep to see if there are Tupperware and AMC pots in the kitchen."
I asked the lady for a glass of water and to use her toilet. I felt like the FBI (agent). I would walk in, scan and assess the situation and know once and for all if this guy was a married man wasting my time. It turned out I really did need to use the loo.
Wine does make the bowels lose, but disappointment gave me instant diarrhoea. I sat there and wept at the panties hanging to dry above the bath.
I drained out my soul in there and came out sober, with a blocked nose and still wearing my sunglasses.
Then, as I drove back home, about four houses down, I spotted the man's GTI parked peacefully below a narrow flight of concrete stairs.
I had trusted a drunken whisperer in my head to give me directions.