Thursday, July 29, 2010
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
As everyone knows, there's nothing quite as rejuvenating as packing up your dog, a picnic lunch and your child and heading off to a winery. For any of you claiming that dogs and toddlers don't belong at wineries, it's obvious that you just don't have any, so you couldn't possibly understand.
The key is to find a place that will not only allow your brood (both 2 and 4-legged) into their tasting room, but will not frown upon subsequently pouring you copious (ok, maybe "copious" is a bit of an overstatement) amounts of alcohol while you hold one, or both of them in your arms.
Another key element is ample outdoor space for the kids to explore, tumble, and crawl through (preferably without killing or permanently maiming themselves) while you and your significant other actually enjoy some food and that bottle of wine you bought after the tasting. Another overstatement. In actuality, you end up hovering in a half crouch - half stand approximation of sitting, shoving olives into your mouth with one hand while simultaneously trying to protect your wine glass (which has already been upturned once), and stop your kid from taking a face-first dive off the picnic bench with the other. Still - there are olives and other various "charcuterie" on your plate, so you've convinced yourself you're being civilized.
After such a meal, there's nothing to do but lay back in the sunny grass, only to be used as a human balance beam. On those (frequent) occasions that your little gymnast takes a tumble, you cross your fingers that when she does fall flat on her face in the grass, she'll be more interested in licking it than crying. She is.
Several hours later, as the sun is starting to set, you load everyone back into the car and start your trek towards home. Sure, it took you just as long for the round trip as you actually spent at the location. But for those few hours, you found your own little corner of heaven, and you drive home feeling lighter than you have in a while.
Or maybe that's just the wine...