It contained three bottles of booze, including a bottle of Fortnum and Mason champagne. I felt it would be appropriate to put the champagne aside for midnight on New Year's Eve.
The last drink I had as the pre-bong Big Ben bells rang out on NYE 2013 eleven months ago was champagne so it seems like a neat ending to the project.
I suspect thereafter the pattern will follow a similar one to the last few New Years Eves - watching the fireworks on the telly, switching back to Jools Holland straight afterwards and falling asleep on the sofa at 1am before dragging ourselves to bed ready for the 6am onslaught.
As the home straight approaches I have been planning a bit of a cheeky January. There are some old friends I haven't seen for a while, and I'd like to fix a night out to say thank you to those who have kindly put some money in the kitty.
In the meantime, I have work to attend to. A couple of sponsors have asked questions:
1) Could I write something on the metabolism of alcohol in relation to other energy sources?
2) Have I finished Dr Marjot's second book Addiction: A kind of loving?
3) Having left thousands of avid blog readers on tenterhooks with This is Hardcore Pt 1, could I write up This is Hardcore Pt 2, so everyone knows what happened in the second experiment?
To which the answers are:
1) Yes I'd love to, it fascinates me, but I need to get research time which I currently don't have.
2) No, but I'd love to. I spent a bit of time with it recently and finally understood a key part of the reunion/attachment theory, which I'd also love to write up, if I had the time.
3) See answer 1).
I will try to get something on one of the three subjects together before the end of the month, but, y'know... work... Christmas...
One thing I will be writing about over the course of the next 31 days is sponsorship. I'm not a good hustler, and the world is full of people constantly asking other people for charitable donations.
But the joy of seeing the money come in, the response from the charities (heart-meltingly grateful and charming with it) and realising what a very generous bunch of people I am lucky enough to know has made me determined to try to prise a few more quid out of those around me.
To be honest, the charitable donation element to this project has served its purpose. Having bound myself in to several early sponsorship commitments, a dual sense of pride and parsimony (I committed to refunding double any donation out of my own pocket if I did have a drink this year) stopped me from falling off the wagon.
There was one moment in late March where I know I would have cracked if the prospect of a very public humiliation hadn't stopped me. Whilst cussed determination might have got me through the last eleven months, it was entirely fuelled by your generosity.
If you would care to join the merry throng of freewheeling debit card dilettantes, this is how to get on it. If you would rather wait until 1 Jan 2015, then my double donation cashback offer becomes redundant and you lose any possibility of ever seeing your donation again. But you will actually know I have done what I set out to do. Either way, I am keeping the fundraising page open for a few weeks into 2015 to hassle people some more.
Finally if you think this is all massively over-indulgent, faintly pathetic and have absolutely no intention of making a donation - I can't say I blame you. I haven't really done much. Your eyeballs on this blog are reward enough.