A touching story told by Jean-Luc, a former alcoholic

65-year-old Jean-Luc Alonso was an alcoholic. Layracais, he is now vice-president of the Lot-et-Garonne Health Friends Association. In 2016, he wrote his story, his story. Moving takes you to the gut.

Whether beautiful or simple, are encounters the pure fruit of chance, or are they written, engraved, programmed in time on the hard disk of our history?

I, Jean-Luc, alcoholic, number 1 57 11 32 001 833 65, will tell you about an impossible meeting, if there is one, it is surprising that makes the question legitimate.

Among the memories of my childhood, there is one that is more specific than the others. If my memory serves me correctly, it dates back to the “60s”.

Once a week – I can’t remember the exact day, but it must have been a Thursday because there was no school then (the day off was changed to Wednesday much later) and I was at home. lunch time – once a week, so around 12:30 a strange group of horses passed by my house.

It consisted of a trailer—itself a wooden box attached to the axle of a car—pulled by a gray-haired donkey, who, I think, was looking in the face.


“Maybe next time…”

A grown man at the wheel of this atypical car; a kid a little older than me sitting next to me. They did the best job in the world for me. Indeed, they went from house to house to pick up used boxes and rabbit skins – I think they were used to make nice and warm coats. This man was called peyarot (“ragman”, patois).

He announced his arrival with a few puffs of fog, and as soon as I heard the horn I jumped out of my chair and ran to the porch of the house to see what was, in my child’s eyes, the most magnificent sight. imaginable gigantic and magical. How happy this boy was to sit next to this man! Why him and not me? What injustice! If only he could be my friend… He could invite me to be with him, to participate in these trips, these adventures! Every time I saw them go, I felt sad and said to myself, “maybe next time…”

Time has passed. The young man was never my friend. Years passed. I grew up in a wonderful family. My parents, as well as my sister who is 9 years older than me, gave me all their love. A happy adolescence. 16 years old, business world, coming to work life.

“I’d be important, and I’d probably be like him.”

At that time, in 1975, it was easy to find a job: that year I was hired as a storekeeper for a large company called La Ruche Méridionale, which had several hypermarkets, supermarkets and grocery stores. I stayed there for 20 years.

While working in the warehouses of the head office, I often saw the CEO, shareholders and senior officials – employees of the company. But there was one I watched more than any other – don’t ask me why. I just remember one was in a suit and coat.

He was dressed in a blue velvet coat that came down to his calves, and every time I saw him I said to myself: “I wish I could know him, I could be with him… I would have a great duty, I would be important, and I would probably be like him.” But again, time passed. I didn’t know him, I wasn’t as important as him.

“Sickness, descent into hell, desire to die”

In the 80s, they say, the most beautiful thing is that I got married. From this union I had two wonderful children, two diamonds. The happiness of seeing them grow up should have kept me busy, but the alcohol ruined everything. Illness, descent into hell, desire to die. Then came hospitalization and weaning. Thanks to all my family and friends. A few years of sobriety.

Then one evening, alcoholism again, I don’t know why, don’t ask me. Maybe to become a normal person again, to be a good product of French culture. My sister, who came to visit me that evening, saw my condition. He then suggested that I go and meet a society where he had found a brochure from his general practitioner.

Of course, I forcibly refused and swore to all devils that I did not drink. After long discussions, I finally realized my mistake and, not wanting to waste these years, I finally agreed to approach this association.

I always remember the first meeting with its president. He received my sister and me in a small office that smelled of cold tobacco. This man with a scarred face told me about the disease and gave me confidence. There was hope, everything was possible.

“I was good in this family”

That same week I attended my first discussion group – really nice people. Months passed. I felt good in this family. I was released sober again, but most of all I was happy.

Then one evening during a discussion group, the president decided to tell us his life story. So it started from childhood. It was quite difficult and difficult because he had not been able to play

with other children: he had worked very early. He collected boxes and rabbit skins with a man nicknamed Peyarot in a donkey cart.

The beginning of his story hit me like a bombshell. Then he continued: his professional and social successes… which led him to become a shareholder and close associate of the CEO of La Ruche Méridionale in the “80s”.

A second bomb exploded in my head. So there was the little boy I dreamed of being a childhood friend and the undeniably successful man I wanted to rub shoulders with later. Two of the people who have the most

I noted that my youth was really only one, and this man, whom I had probably been searching for years without knowing, was sitting in front of me.

“That night I cried, I cried a lot”

I cried that night, I cried a lot. Like in fairy tales, my requests were answered many years later after a long journey. Boucle d’Or always found happiness only on the third try, didn’t it? The little pigs tried it three times before they built a secure shelter. I couldn’t help but think that it was a lucky star that made us meet three times before the meeting.

A strong friendship has developed between us. This person gave me this faith, this strength to help anyone with addiction. Time passed again. I became a member of the board of the association, then treasurer, then vice president.

This is the story of a wonderful meeting. I want each of you to know the similarities.

Thank you for everything, you have guided my life, I would say since childhood.

Thank you to my wife,

My daughter, my son.

My sister Marie-Hélène.

Thank you too, Nora.

Nothing would be possible without you.

Thank you for your help.

Hugs to all of you, you are my family.

Thanks to you “alcohol disease”: I’m happy.

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