I fell in love. Thirty one years it took, but I fell in love. However this love is different. It didn’t take thirty one years to love my wife. I probably loved her before I was born. This love is more of a passionate infatuation. The culprit to have taken my heart, mind and body hostage? Wine.
Yes, I know that was anti-climatic. That wasn’t were I seem to be going, yet here I am. In love with a beverage that has very little nutritional value. Some abuse this love, and I can see why. I’m not speaking in alcoholic terms. I’m speaking in the complexity of such drink.
Please, understand, I did not grow up in the most privileged of conditions. The taste of “Tang” still lingers in my childhood nightmares. It’s pretty sad when I realize the juices I used to drink, were not really juice at all. Who would have thought that Kool-Aid doesn’t grow on trees. I would have sworn differently growing up.
Yet, here I am. Thirty one years of not understanding what wine was about. I hated the way it tasted. It was bitter and scorned. What I failed to realize, it wasn’t the wine that was bitter. It was my life.
Maybe I’m overly stating what my new-found passion is, but the truth is that now I understand. I understand why some people love onion. I don’t. I understand why some people love. I didn’t.
So again, here I am. Learning about one of the oldest beverages in the world. From the times of pre-recorded history, humans learned to make wine. It didn’t take long. I used to drink it just to get drunk. Get a bottle and finish it in five minutes. I didn’t understand the taste, or the headache the morning after.
I decided to give it a try. A real, honest to goodness try. It paid off. I learned how wine is made. The different types of wine. The different methods of enjoyment. What is wine? I learned that.
Little by little I started appreciating the flavors. The smells. The complexity of such gift. I found out a lot about me through wine. Each bottle is different than the next, and the complexity and variety of each serving is pretty similar to my life.
I can taste beyond the bitterness. I can smell beyond the alcohol. I can uncover hidden flavors, which were always there, but now I can appreciate them. My life is equally interesting, at least to me. My life’s a bold Cabernet Sauvignon, sometimes. Other times I’m as clear as a Chardonnay. Others, I’m a sweet White Zinfandel.
Wine is a work of art. It’s a painting dressed as a drink. The colors, the shapes, they’re all there. Opening the eyes, nose, taste buds. Just like life.
Yeah, I’m still new in my relationship with wine, so I am hoping it turns out to be what I hope it will. Now I understand a lot of things. Those that abuse wine, do not understand it. Those that abuse wine, do not love it. Just like life.