Drinking Alcohol taught me how to fly
Then it took away the sky....

Monday, July 18, 2011



In the hallway, I met a grown man crying—sobbing is the better word.

Allow me to elucidate. We just spent a few days in Miami, Florida (US), a place where many come to live before they move somewhere else, because of the many--just too many--Peeps who did NOT move somewhere else. It was a conference of Area 15 of Alcoholics Anonymous Districts which we attended.

There were just under 600 sober Alcoholic Peeps meeting,  greeting, carrying on some service business, listening, learning, and having also a good time, by the way—grin!

Cascades of water seemed everywhere inside and out. Water was falling everywhere also in the jungle-like, partly shaded swimming areas—you know the kind, same old, same old. But each was a miniature Niagara and each, in the shining sun so splashingly gorgeous!

Beautiful hotel...GREAT hamburgers, I mean that! (Seems such a shame to visit a Five-Star Hotel, and order hamburger, the only item under $22.) Oh well, the accommodations—luxurious!

Those B I G jet airplanes taking off from Miami International are numerous in a given day. The runway facing our direction sends those giant Jets out over the Atlantic, about every two minutes. Beautiful, especially with all those lights at night, they fly so low here until that great surge of power zooms them upward and outward over the moon-drenched sea.

Oddly enough, the rooms here are marvelously soundproofed. It has been an exceptionally interesting weekend for me. The 'main' meeting was from 9 AM-3 PM Sunday. We drove across the state to our home in Naples late Sunday afternoon, a two-hour trip. It is always a fun experience to escape the routine life.

Oh yes...that man crying outside our room—he was not one of our 600 Peeps—was deeply saddened by the fact that this fancy schmantzy hotel charges $13 per day for WI-FI. He claimed that rate is nearly (with tax) $5000 annually. So he is lived for three days without Internet access. Boo-Hoo! TELL me about it—grin!

Each of us Peeps have our own demons. I will not tell you mine, but I'll give you three guesses...and you will probably be correct no matter HOW you score! (No, I have not robbed a bank. That is one of my “yets”. It has not YET happened! And likely will not!)

What a wonderful, peaceful, interesting, busy yet serene, few days away! And it was spent with hundreds of Peeps who do not deem it necessary to DRUG themselves in order to have a great time together--WHO would have dreamed that I could be one of them?


A special EMPATHY I have for those bartenders who work in a 5-Star Hotel during a convention of 600 Alcoholics—who DON'T DRINK!!! (Or should I call them “Adult-Beverage” Dispensers?)

IMAGE: Google Images


  1. I was in Vermont for 10 days without cell or internet, I hated it for two days and then LOVED & relished it. Acceptance?

    Glad to hear you had a nice time

  2. JEREMY:
    Agreed. There comes a time, whether at birth, death, or in between...when one must say, "Well, this is the way things ARE. Nothing I can do to change them. So, BE HAPPY Jeremy! Me, too!

  3. Three words for sobbing soul. Grow. Up. Dude.

  4. When I go home at night, the cell and tv are off and the silence and conversations that are given and exchanged are much needed.

  5. Sounds wonderful to be among 600 adults who have conquered their demons.
    Guess there were genuine laughs and tears shared.
    Something I have noticed about AA people; they are all "walking tall".
    Their body language speaks victory.

    Wow, nice to know I can afford at least to eat on a five star Miami hotel.

    In Norway you will be charged 25 USD for Chinese takeaway, simplest menu.

    No wonder the Germans are famous for bringing their own food when they visit Norway.

    I often think about the guy who came to one of your meetings and went without a word. I still pray for him.
    I love to learn about wonders. Then again; all the 600 conference attendants are living wonders. I guess even the bartenders were happy to meet you!

  6. I have often wondered how the bartenders feel about working the venues where AA conventions take place. I should ask sometime.

  7. Steve, you captured Miami so beautifully....this artificial city that is so strikingly, heartbreakingly so beautiful...the natural beauty abounds amongst the concrete and the blazing sun.

    And 600 sober souls in one area is a miracle indeed!

    Really enjoyed this post. Keep going!

    Lady Nyo

  8. ah i love miami...been forever since i was there...lots to take in...even a $22 burger...yikes...warm thoughts for all those souls...

  9. Go out to talk to the bugs using the natural "internet": maybe your ears... .. .. ..

    You will be relieved.

  10. i have often thought of what it would be like there as i have never been but DIL was there recently and said not one word so i suppose was not impressed.she probably never left her conference hotel!

    you make it sound idyllic excepting the price of a hamburger but i guess you might share it?? well, NOT!! even the craziness of the noisy jets sounds lovely...perhaps it is the Spirit of the gathering that added to the beauty as it truly sounds beautiful. xox

    Wish I could convey the message, but I'm sure he does not read 'us'...grin!

    That is JUST the way it should be. But I admit to not doing just that!
    Woe is me! PEACE!

    Have not seen that 'guy' since...but he will be back around, this year--or in TEN years, whenever HE is ready. That's the way it works! (You know that line: "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear!"

    When I was a bartender, I used to 'ask off'--by being 'sick'...
    Because AA Peeps are not the best of tipping Peeps, unless their history includes waiting table, etc...

    Lady, you do me honor with those SO kind words...and encouragement
    Thank YOU!

    But they were GREAT burgers...RIGHT?!!! (And Starbucks coffee went with that, forgot to mention!

    Don't quite know what you mean, unless it is 'talking to bugs which will make me feel good'. Well I 'talk to them...and everything else. And I DO feel GooooD!
    Thanks...and PEACE!

  12. That sounds like a wonderful time and I'm so glad you didn't have too far to drive...all those peeps clogging up the roads. :)

  13. PS: I have to admit, since that squirrel's tail wasn't very fluffy, he did greatly resemble a rat on a wire. :)

  14. We have our own priorities and that's what makes this world interesting.
    I just read out your post to my husband and we both agree - you are doing great .Wish my country had such help groups .Have a happy week Steve.

  15. Glad that you had a good time. It is hard to give up internet but totally possible!

  16. Sounds like it was a wonderful weekend.
    Glad to know that, Steve.
    When I used to live in Panama City, went to Miami quite a few times.
    What a city!

    And I think not having internet now and then is a welcome change!
    For me, anyway!

  17. challenging
    interesting read

  18. MAGPIE:
    Yup! One more Peeps clogging up the roadway...me! Thanks for comment.
    I have believed that squirrels ARE rodents...but behave nothing like their rat cousins. And squirrels are now on a 'protected list? (Not sure!) They are maybe the cutest animal in the wild in US.

    I would bet 'money' that in your country are the same groups and meetings I attend--which use the same principles and same Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. I looked up, and found 15 meetings each week--do not know if ANY are close to your particular part of town--grin! Go CLICK HERE

    I'm guessing--and finding out--it's possible to give up anything which has not become "attached" (as in 'obsession?")

    Doing without 'anything' is a welcome change, e.g., HERSHEY BARS!!! I know THAT, also!

    Thanks for 'interesting'...I did not 'see' what you say, challenging. Do you live also in India? Come back again, please! I visited your blog...you are a roving WORLD reporter. Thank you!

  19. I love your lagniappe. Great observation.

    And since we're talking about acceptance... I once lived on the outskirts of that airport in Miami, directly under the flight path of all those jets. We learned to just "press pause" every couple of minutes on any conversation, and after a while, never really noticed the roar overhead. Yep, all about accepting the things you can't change.

  20. Yes Steve we do have many such groups ,one such group comes annually to my house for donations too but they sound good only one papers .I have been to your country twice and seen how effective and sincere your systems ate compared to ours -- hence said what i said.

  21. Wow that's a really good thing! keep it up