Thursday, July 10, 2008
All I Needed to Learn in Life, I Learned From Wine
I was going through some photos for a scrapbook that I am pretending to start when I came across the one above. Despite the fact that it was easily 105 degrees in Paso Robles, Calif., that day (and I almost knocked out from heat exhaustion and tasting too many wines--um, four--for my lightweight self), I can remember the taste of the wine like it was yesterday. The 2007 Viognier was a lovely golden hue and complemented by hints of apples, oranges, vanilla and pears. In the midst of breathtaking mountain views, silence that never happens in my Los Angeles hometown and a humbling that only comes when around debaucherous beauty, I was struck by a simple truth--vintners probably understand life better than I ever will.
Those who tirelessly labor to get a plump Cab or Chardonnay know that it doesn't just happen overnight--that it takes a ridiculous amount of hard work and struggle for the plants to push up through the soil. Plants must be nurtured and loved to make it to maturity. Vintners understand that many stages have to happen in order for an unripe grape to become a full liquid paired with a crisp piece of salmon or heavy roast. And so it is with us.
I am encountering the reality that personal growth only comes when we accept that the growing process isn't pleasant. But what really matters is the fruit that comes out in the end.