I was frank enough to confess
It was my first day of the tavern when I met the Jolly Doctor. The tavern was his home—for he lived a perilous bachelor—and had been many years; and when, being in a shaken state, I sent down from the apartments I had taken and requested the presence of a physician, he came up to me. He had me right and on my feet in the course of a few hours, and then I began to look him in the face and make his acquaintance.
As I abode in the tavern for a considerable space, we put in many friendly hours together. The Jolly Doctor was a round, strong, active body of a man, virile and with an atmosphere almost hypnotic. His forehead was good, his jaw hard, his nose arched, while his gray-blue eyes, half sour, half humorous and deeply wise of the world, gleamed in his head with the shine of beads.
One evening while we were together about the fireplace of my parlor, I was for having up a bottle of sherry.
“Before you give the order,” said the Jolly Doctor, restraining me with a friendly yet semiprofessional gesture, “let me say a word. Let me ask whether you have an intention or even a hope of one day—no matter how distant—quitting alcohol?” Without pausing for my answer, the Jolly Doctor went on. “You are yet a young man; I suppose you have seen thirty years. It has been my experience, albeit I’m but fifteen years your senior and not therefore as old as a hill, that no man uproots a habit after he has reached middle age. While climbing, mentally, physically, nervously, the slope of his years and adding to, not taking from, his strength, a man may so far re-draw himself as to make or break an appetite—the appetite of strong drink—if you will. But let him attain the summit of his strength, reach as it were the crest of his days and begin to travel down the easy long descent toward the grave, and every chance of change has perished beyond his reach. You are thirty; and to make it short, my friend, you must, considering what bottle tendencies lie latent within you, stop now and stop hard, or you are lost forever.”
To say I was impressed is not to exaggerate. , however, that privately I held no hope of change. Several years before, I had become convinced, after a full survey of myself and the close study of my inclinations, that I was born to live and die, like my grandsire, the victim of drink. I was its thrall, bound to it as I lay in my cradle; there existed no gate of escape. This I told; not joyously, I promise you, or as one reciting good fortune; not argumentatively and as reason for the forthcoming of asked-for wine; but because it was true and made, as I held it, a reason for going in this matter of tipple with freest rein since dodge or balk my fate I might not.
At the close my Jolly Doctor shook his head in negative [url=http://ndrewtue.bloguez.com/ndrewtue/6097096/-][color=#0F0F0F]The entire[/color][/url][url=http://fredert.publicoton.fr/-956180][color=#0F0F0F] room was[/color][/url][url=http://molihuakaip.blogspot.tw/2017/09/blog-post.html][color=#0F0F0F] faced[/color][/url][url=http://content.blog.bbiq.jp/content/2017/09/post-9154.html][color=#0F0F0F] with[/color][/url][url=http://hardyer.blogrip.com/2017/09/04/toudfssd/][color=#0F0F0F] polished [/color][/url][url=http://blog.creaders.net/user_blog_diary.php?did=MzAxMTE3][color=#0F0F0F]granite.[/color][/url].
“No man knows his destiny,” said he, “until the game’s played out. Come, let me prescribe for you. The drug I have in mind has cured folk; I should add, too, that for some it carries neither power nor worth. Still, it will do no harm, and since we may have a test of its virtues within three days; at the worst you will be called upon to surrender no more than seventy-two hours to sobriety.” This last was delivered like a cynic.
On my side, I not only thanked the Jolly Doctor for his concern, but hastened to assure him I would willingly make pact to abstain from alcohol not three days, but three weeks or three months, were it necessary to pleasure his experiment. My bent for drink was in that degree peculiar that I was not so much its disciple who must worship constantly and every day, as one of those who are given to sprees. Often and of choice I was a stranger to so much as the odor of rum for weeks on end. Then would come other weeks of tumult and riot and drunkenness. The terms of trial for his medicine would be easily and comfortably undergone by me. He had my promise of three days free of rum.
The Jolly Doctor went to his room; returning, he placed on the table a little bottle of liquid, reddish in color and bitter of taste.