Booze Alternative: Schweppes Ginger Beer

Who knew there were so many ginger beers in the world? I didn’t. This is another one I discovered when Mum and Dad were in town last month.

Schweppes Ginger Beer
Schweppes Ginger Beer.

This one tastes kind of retro. I can’t really explain it. It just sort of…reminds me of something that I maybe drank a very long time ago, when I was very young. I think I need a few more of these to try and work it out.

Booze Alternative: Fever Tree Ginger Beer

About a week after trying the Fever Tree ginger ale, I found their ginger beer in the Holiday Inn bar in central Newcastle.

Fever Tree Ginger Beer
Fever Tree Ginger Beer.

This one’s much tastier than the ale, with a nice sweet ‘n’ sour tang. There’s a lot of spice in its bubbles, which means I can’t put my head near it without coughing when it’s freshly poured, but after a few minutes I can drink it without a problem. It just needs to ‘sit’ for a while!

Northerly climes

Most of today was taken up with running the Inverness Half Marathon. It was freezing and wet in Inverness, and it took forever to get warm again after the run! At least it wasn’t snowing, which was my fear when Geth and I first booked to enter the race.

After a long hot shower, the rest of the day involved eating a lot and trying a lot of new booze alternatives, which I will review at some point!

A less active day tomorrow.

OOTD 10th March 2019
OOTD: post-race recovery outfit, with bonus TV in background because Geth didn’t want to move from his bed. Glasses Emporio Armani (2017), jumper Jac (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2018), leggings Primark (2018), socks RNLI (2016).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Arcadia – The Flame
Geri Halliwell – Lift Me Up
Duran Duran – Rio
Irene Cara – Flashdance (What A Feeling)
Justin Timberlake and Chris Stapleton – Say Something
Terence Trent D’Arby – Sign Your Name

Buried in books

It’s been a fairly relaxed day – I got a bit more editing done on my book draft (so nearly there now!) and have been looking into online resources to help with sobriety and mental health (I mentioned this in my two-month sobriety update yesterday).

Now looking forward to a chilled-out evening of reading before the usual hectic Thursday tomorrow.

OOTD 6th March 2019
OOTD: sunshine and showers today! Scarf MyScarf (2019), hoodie Sonar (2006), t-shirt H&M (2018), skirt Dark Star (2004), tights unknown brand (2010), shoes Office (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Ava Max – Sweet But Psycho
Duran Duran – Hold Back The Rain
The Power Station – Communication
Duran Duran – A View To A Kill

Booze Alternative: Pret A Manger Ginger Beer

It’s yet another ginger beer! We first found these in the Pret A Manger at Leeds train station, and Geth has been bringing them back for me from town ever since.

Pret A Manger Ginger Beer
Pret A Manger Ginger Beer.

This one is gorgeously sweet – probably the sweetest of the ginger beers I’ve tried so far. It does make me cough a bit with its spiciness, but it’s a lovely taste overall.

Life without alcohol update: two months sober

Two months sober today. This is easily the longest period of time I’ve spent without a drop of alcohol since…well, probably since I was a small child. It’s been a strange month since my last sobriety update.


Early sobriety is a bit of a confusing rollercoaster, and I’ve found that if I don’t keep myself busy, I spend a lot of time reflecting and just turning things over in my brain. I also spend a lot of time thinking about drink, which is why I’ve been trying so hard to keep my brain occupied by getting on with work. Unfortunately, spending every waking hour working has been playing havoc with my stress levels, and so this week I’ve had to dial it back so I can try and relax in the evenings. I’ve not been very successful so far, but it has meant my brain’s not still racing when I go to bed, which is probably a good thing.

Sleep-wise, I’m not getting the bizarre vivid dreams every single night anymore, but they are still showing up occasionally. On the whole, though, I’m sleeping better than I ever have in my life. I go to bed at half past ten, read for half an hour or so, drop off as soon as my head hits the pillow, and tend to wake up naturally about ten minutes before my alarm goes off at seven. I only ever feel tired in a kind of satisfying way, after going for a long run.

I’ve reviewed a few more booze alternatives over the last month:

I’m still finding them a good alternative for that Friday ‘celebratory’ feeling, but the novelty of trying different things is starting to wear off a bit. I’ve found the second month to be tougher than the first in terms of cravings for alcohol, strangely.

On the whole, I’m finding it a bit difficult with everything churning over in my brain all the time, which is also making the process feel kind of insular and lonely. As such, I’m currently finding various strategies for feeling a bit less like I’m on my own with this thing – I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts on the subject, I’ve put a few recommended books on my Amazon wishlist, and I’m tentatively exploring online and offline community options. All of this is going to be a real focus over the next month, along with my mental health in general.

I want to say a huge ‘thanks’ to everyone who has got in touch over the last couple of months with messages of support, helpful suggestions, and links to resources. I appreciate it more than I can express.

Booze Alternative: Fentimans Cherry Cola

Another flavour of Fentimans that I found on the supermarket shelf!

Fentimans Cherry Cola
Fentimans Cherry Cola.

I’ve never really liked cherry cola that much, I have to say. Even if it is the drink of choice for the brand-censored ‘Lola’ in the classic Kinks song (one of the reasons I prefer the uncensored original). However, I’ve got my usual ‘collect the set’ mentality when it comes to Fentimans, so I thought I’d give it a go.

And the verdict is…nope, still don’t like cherry cola. Can’t win ’em all!