Saturday, January 02, 2016


This morning at 2.00am I flung my bathroom scales out the second floor window. I watched it crash onto the garden patio and explode into pieces that shot up into the air like an erupting volcano. “Cheers” I cried, hanging out the window with all the finesse of a fish-wife, raising my 5th glass of Bordeaux, and adding a well-timed “and I never want to see you again you Bastard.” If my neighbours had heard, they would probably put it down to a booze-infused lovers quarrel.

I returned to the kitchen feeling much better, finished frying the three slices of plum pudding I had abandoned for a bathroom break (yes; my wine glass goes everywhere with me) by adding cream, brandy, some grated chocolate, and simmering until a thick sauce had formed, then going to the living room and congratulating myself on removing the one and only instrument of torture in my life with such aplomb…it seemed like a really good beginning to 2016.

As I sat scoffing pudding and licking my spoon, I began to think if there was anything else in my life that needed a metaphorical throwing out and smashing, I mean the New Year is all about breaking old patterns, and creating new and healthy ways of being, and since I had made such a good start, and felt so much better, I was feeling completely encouraged.

Next morning I awoke on the sofa with a headache that was somewhere between viral meningitis and a brain tumour. Ok I thought, so quitting alcohol is a priority. I opened the bathroom cabinet, it screeched so loudly it got on my last functional nerve, and I sort of slid to the floor, munching on a mouthful of painkillers that with every bite sounded like a clay Pidgeon shoot in my head.

One hour later I’m standing in front of my wardrobe and I’m thinking red…yes red, my confidence injecting, post hang over saviour. Vibrant and unapologetic, turbo-boost red, an uplifting look at me colour that never fails to sober up a gal, because with red she knows she’s going to be on show.

As I sit drinking a detoxifying Tea blend in the fabulous Vintage Tea Rooms, a favourite haunt, I begin to think about New Year Resolutions, and why, when I had been so definite about them in the past, I always arrived into February disappointed that I was unable to uphold even one of them with any sort of consistency. When I decided on a resolution it was always based upon making constructive changes that involved abstinence of some sort, and therefore had a short life span, I’m a hedonist at heart, and tell me I can’t have something, and I will obsess about it to the point of having a psychotic episode. Not everything can be conveniently thrown out the bathroom window.

Yes, I can do without wine for a month, while marking the days in my diary when I feel it’s legitimately time to drink myself into the Betty Ford clinic. Yes, I can avoid shopping for three weeks and then take out a mortgage to get that Birkin. Abstinence in this girl’s world doesn’t work, and as I look forward to the coming year I can’t help but wonder, in my making up my mind to embrace the New Year with lasting resolutions…am I being too resolute? Is denial my ultimate downfall? And, is deciding to do without, ultimately doing me in?

Maybe I need more freedom? Maybe I need to look at what I can give myself rather than what I need to restrict or take away? Maybe moderation might be more manageable, rather than abstinence and feeling I have broken an important pact with myself? So If I apply this new principle to all areas of my life, then suddenly I have absolved myself from what I have come to know as RRF, or, Repetitive Resolution Failure, and can face the New Year with confidence.

Of course looking forward also entails looking back, I can’t lay new plans on the existing foundations of a life and business I have successfully established without some scrutiny, and rather than add too many new resolutions to my busy enterprise after my sudden epiphany, I’m more inclined to celebrate and acknowledge past successes and personal formulas that are based upon not only making things as beautiful as possible, but helping clients find the beauty within themselves, an integral part of Vintageagnes that has never been tempered by moderation, so I won’t change it, but I will tweak it, and suddenly I’m under less pressure. But that’s business, what about me and my private and personal excesses?

So one of my new “Resolutions” is to cut back on my wine consumption, but I decided that I didn’t like the wording. Cut back sounded surgical, so instead I opted for reducing my wine intake (which leaves a healthy margin for….minor binges, which in my new found spirit of flexibility, I won’t judge myself too harshly for)…ditto for cigarettes. Yes they are both on the way out…but slowly…gradually.

After that I’m beginning to think there’s no need for any further major changes. 2016 will have its challenges, and my life, busy as it is, already feels like a clothing crammed changing room, and there’s no escaping that mirror and the close-up. I’m not always rational or balanced, I’m ruled by my emotions, there’s beauty, there’s ugliness, there’s no avoiding the truth of who I am; life reflects my behaviour, and I acknowledge it, and I’m grateful for the learning.

But I’ve noticed something in that girl who looks back at me from the mirror, already she seems relieved after my self-assessing pre-2016 dilemma, and that’s good. We have a long way to go together, she and I, and I’m not giving her a hard time, we have so many more things to do, I still feel as though we are at the beginning of a great adventure, and no matter how she screws things up, I’ll always be forgiving….and on that particular resolution…Yes…I’m absolutely resolute.

Happy New Year x

Edited by Roland Thackaberry

Photography by Matthew Reilly

Location: The Parlour Vintage Tea Rooms, The Port of Waterford Building, 2 Georges Street, Waterford. 

Hairstyle by Sarah Jane Hanton 

Vintage inspired tiara and necklace from Willow and Wild by Bonzie



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