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Bon Journal

Days of wine and roses

Alcohol numbs the mind and relaxes the body. In times like these, many find comfort in a gin and tonic or a triple martini. After the oil risk seminar today, I asked for a Brandy Alexander, followed by a Grasshopper. The bartender at the Churchill International in London knows his stuff.

Can we ever return to the days of wine and roses?

The cocktails were tasty but terribly intoxicating on an empty stomach. In this state, I bid farewell to my colleagues and went swimming afterwards. The heat of the steam room accelerated the flow of alcohol into my blood stream. I was no longer in control of my mind.

In three dimensional space, I swam to a beautiful and flawless world. I imagined the purity and innocence of children untainted even as they grew up. With each stroke, I turned back the clock until I was a mere toddler discovering the kindness of my parents.

The events of last week have elevated the importance of those dear to us. The threat of danger such as that encountered during war has often catalysed people to act or commit prematurely. A friend told me that her friends got engaged last weekend instead of waiting another six months. It also causes us to question and reprioritise our work.

Am I doing something that directly helps to make this world a better place to live in? Is work a panacea to erase my concerns about being able to afford a lifestyle that I deserve? Is work a means to an end? If so, what is the end?

If the Twin Towers can disappear in one hour, what of the reality as we know it? I have returned to my life in London but no longer to the days of wine and roses. Something has changed, though I know not what.

20 September 2001 Thursday