Thursday, 3 October 2013

On Drinking and Falling off Window-sills

Babushka had difficulty with drunks. She was scared of them and never liked drunk men let alone drunk women. She never got tipsy, let along drunk. Which makes this story so much funnier.

There was a big celebration at the village she grew up in. It must have been a wedding, or something like that. All the neighbours got together eating and drinking and being merry.

Babushka must have been about five or six years old. She had an older  friend Lyuba, who today would be described as someone with learning disability. They were neighbours and played together a lot. The party was no exception.

They were sitting on a window-sill watching the celebratory meal and chatting. I am guessing that children were not considered important enough to be given a seat at the table, so they observed from a side.

Lyuba offered babushka a drink. She drunk it. Then another - babushka drunk it again. Little did she know that it was samogon - homemade vodka - and it was strong! So after another glass, babushka fell down onto the floor. Drunk!

Her father ran to her and picked her up. He was worried there was something terribly wrong with her. He quizzed Lyuba, who was off her face herself, and realised what had happened.

He carried babushka home, asking her questions on the way, testing whether she understood what was happening. It was all a little dizzy for her.

- What are these, Mariyka?
- There are our cows, - mumbled babushka.
- And what are these?
- Our sheep...
- And these?
- Our chicken...

My dad always found this story amusing. Every time we had a family celebration which involved alcohol he used to tease babushka light-heartedly:

- Make sure you don't pour too much wine to the mother-in-law! She is a well-known alcoholic!

We all giglled. It was just so absurd. Babushka being an alcoholic!  

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