Quinine and Lime
Til I’ve had a gin and tonic, I can’t sleep. I used to worry that it made me an alcoholic, but there’s something about the slightly bitter taste of tonic water mixed generously with dry gin and a twist of lime that calms the mind.
One time, I ran out of gin. Wasn’t paying attention the night before, and the bit at the bottom of the bottle didn’t nearly make up my usual highball drink. For hours I tossed and turned, vainly trying to coax my mind into slumber. Finally, I couldn’t stand it anymore and took to the streets in search of a late-night liquor store. I wandered the streets in a haze of fatigue, unable to discern store lights from street lights.
When I came upon an open shop at last, I stumbled in and pointed to the first bottle of gin I saw. My cash stuck to the grimy counter, and the clerk’s bloodshot, beady eyes leered at me suspiciously. If not for my desperate need, I would have backed out in fear, but I grabbed the bottle feeling only relief that soon I would sleep the sleep of the unafflicted.