Saturday, July 10, 2010

Summer Fling

I haven't hidden it at all. It's probably nothing serious, but it's fun while it's lasting. Upon the first indicator in May, my wife looked at me, raised her eyebrow, and simply said, "Really?" Remembering an outdoor cafe near a cobbled town square, my only response was a smile, a sigh, an apologetic look, and a shrug of the shoulder.

You see, after 37 years, she knows me well. I'm a red wine kind of guy. I prefer Shiraz in general, but am also partial to Napa Valley Cabernets, New York reds, 2005 Merlots (not a lot of those left), and Argentian Reds. I really like Australian Shiraz, Italian Muscatino and an occasional rustic Tuscan Chianti. And I do recall a marvelous estate Compangolo that was so complex it kept my taste buds confused for a few days.

But when she gave me that look, I had just asked for a glass of Pinot Grigio with my salad and sandwich lunch. For three months now, I've had a fling with Pinot Grigio. It's just a summer time thing.

The seeds of this little affair were planted 3 years ago during an educational tour to Italy. We were wandering Florence for a day, migrating between the Duomo and Piazza della Signoria. Our group stopped in a little plazaside cafe for lunch. One of our colleagues ordered a Pinot with his pizza, and it sounded so good that nearly the whole rest of our group joined him. The sun glancing off the awnings in the piazza, the heat radiating up from the cobblestone walk, the constant bubble of water at the Fountain of Neptune, the red tile roofs, Italian men wearing classy Italian shoes walking lovely Italian women wearing flowery Italian summer sundresses, the David, Perseus holding Medusa's head in victory in a pavilion across the square . . . it was all so very intoxicating. We needed a glass of Pinot to stabilize our heady afternoon.

But that began an association which would grow into a summer affair. Pinot and fresh fruit. Pinot and sweetbread. Pinot and cheese. Pinot and good conversation. All mingled with afternoon warmth and jazz and the wafting fragrance of White Alyssum. Pinot and sweet memories.

Some of you reading this, will remember that afternoon. Just know this. I miss you today as I recall with deep fondness those few days traversing the cradle of Western civilization with you. I raise my glass of Pinot to you in love.

Today's Influences and Soundtrack:
Homer, Odyssey
Stephen C. Meyers, Signature in the Cell
Goldmark, Violin Concerto
David Benoit, Heroes
Anna Vandas, All I Thought I Knew
Paramore, Brand New Eyes