Where is Georgia?

If you ask the question in the title of a group of friends the answer might be “she is in the powder room.” Or if you ask a truck driver he would probably answer, it is north of Florida, and if you asked a native of east Europe they would answer between Turkey and Russia. What does it matter? Not a damn thing. It is just one of those rhetorical questions that fall into the category of trivia depending upon what your ethnic roots are.

Recently Lovely and I shopped at a deli of her ethnicity. She loves food from her own country or region. As a curious by-stander, I shopped the shelves of liquor and wine. I noticed a large selection of wines from places like Armenia, Moldava, Georgia, but none from the country that this deli was fronting. Since Georgia the country is geographically close to Ukraine and Russia, and since Ukraine is currently kicking Russia’s ass in a war no one seems to understand, I purchased a bottle of cabernet wine from Georgia the country. The idea was to understand just what was being consumed in that region that would want to make them go to war.

I presented the bottle to my club with a challenge, “open your taste buds to try this rich red wine and tell me what you think.” To my surprise several members jumped at the chance. three of them thought the wine was good, one thought it to be average. I thought it to be smooth. That could mean the the wine was well aged and the tannins had softened the harshness of a young cabernet. After reading the label I learned that it is a blend of 50% Cabernet and 50% Saperavi. What the heck is Saperavi? Most likely it is a local variety of grape that doesn’t grow any where else in the world.

The bottle of Georgian wine went empty in record time as several members liked it so much they went for seconds. I was one of them. On my next trip to this deli, I will sample wine from Armenia and Moldava, two more postage stamp sized countries in the region. These countries have existed for centuries. Their people have been making wine for just as long, and they must know how to make it good.

Nevertheless, I will enjoy drinking wine with my friends on Tuesday nights for as long as I am able.

It’s Wine Time!


Someday’s one wakes up and just drags the rest of the waking hours yawning, and desiring sleep even after eight hours of uninterrupted slumber. It is now four hours since hauling myself out of bed to take on a new day. Finally, it occurred to me that drinking a bottle of wine followed by a vodka chaser may not have been such a good idea last eve. When will I learn that mixing booze is not smart? Or maybe that too much booze is not healthy either.

Sunday, October 15, 1961

Writing should be easy today, but it isn’t. My fingers feel heavy and reluctant to find the keys. My mind seems to be in low gear struggling to climb the hill without any power. I need to downshift and get some torque going or I’ll never get to the peak. A memory pops into mind of my first long car trip in nineteen sixty-two when I drove a Volkswagen Bug across country. It was dark and I was tired, and I was passing through the high Sierras somewhere in northern California. This was before Interstate travel and limited grades. I screamed down hills at full speed headed toward pegging the speedometer at seventy-five. All thirty-nine horses were galloping full speed. Then, the tiny bug reached the vale and began the ascent of the next endless hill that extended into the black sky beyond the reach of the headlights. Passing anybody in the way until the speed dropped to sixty, then fifty, then down shifting into third gear to keep the engine pulling at max effort, then down to second and eventually into first gear and that is where the little bug that could stayed roaring away at full throttle and straining at fifteen mph eventually dropping to five miles per hour toward the apex. It seemed like eternity before reaching the crown, and the process reversed shifting through the gears to pick up speed and then bottoming at max speed before losing velocity up the next hill.

That was a long night driving that road, but I made it through in good shape because I knew how to shift gears and change with the need. Eventually, the little bug that could made it across America and back to Illinois. I learned why I wanted a car with more horsepower on that trip, thirty-nine horses is not enough to pull a lightweight car like the bug up those endless long hills. My gas mileage was great, but I paid for it with time and effort shifting gears. I didn’t learn my lesson too quickly however because I traded my bug for a high powered forty horsepower VW Karmann Ghia.

Hangovers are the body’s way of sending the owner a message about the dangers of pushing life limits too far. Although I am enjoying the solitude of this day my body is screaming at me with a warning to sl-o-o-ow down. My heart pump is working overtime trying to transport oxygen to all the sister components needed to sustain life. No doubt the fluid of life flowing within is also altered with too much alcohol and thus is not as effective as it could be. Brain power is severely limited and response to suggestion is sluggish. Like the little bug that could I feel like I am roaring at max effort to climb an imaginary hill that is seemingly endless. Hopefully, as the day wears on the crest will appear and the effort required to climb will ease a bit.

In the meantime, I don’t think I am going to drink like that again.

For Winers Only


I Guess I’m a Winer

Is it five o’clock yet?