Friday, May 31, 2013

Hitting the Wine Trail on vacation

May 31, 2013

Vacations are marvelous and precious things. A week away from the day job has passed in the blink of an eye, and while I value my employment, I find I'm in no hurry to return. Doing good in the world one person at a time can be rewarding, but it does take an emotional toll. So does dealing with the politically-minded who don't realize they sound like brainless magpies, but I digress. For my last official day of this week of vacation, we went in search of local wine.

I live within easy driving distance of West Virginia, Virginia and Pennsylvania. Which way to go first was the hardest decision. We chose....poorly. The idea was to go far and work our way back home so we headed out to a new winery, Red Heifer, in the Cascade/Smithsburg area of Maryland. We didn't get to the wine part because...we drove right by the place. Their sign sits back off the road and, yes, I drive a little fast. My honey's nav program on his so-called smart phone was then activated and we turned around and went back.

I hope Red Heifer does well, but it will have to do well without me. We traversed a dangerously rutted and pot-holed gravel lane to a facility that is NOT handicapped accessible. #1 - My car sits a mere six inches off the ground and dragging bottom isn't in the playbook. I had to keep going to the top as there wasn't any way to turn around and go back down the mountain. #2 - My partner scared me to death when he got out of the car on the severely sloped parking area. And once he got down to the side of the parking area, no way in hell could he get back up under his own steam, even with his cane. Yes, I backed my car over their yard to get it to him.

Seriously, I hope you go and support them because I think small businesses are the backbone of this country but be warned - take a four-wheel drive and only people who can walk normally without assistance.

Our spirits somewhat dampened (okay, mine were soaking wet because my partner felt so bad he thought he was about to ruin my whole day out and it was NOT his fault) we decided to head straight to the place we really wanted to visit - Knob Hall in Clear Spring, Maryland.

Knob Hall sits out in the middle of nowhere, which is a plus for a vineyard. Once again, parking the car was a problem - NO handicap parking. Of course, by this point, I didn't give a damn if I ran over things to get him to the front door in any manner necessary to avoid him risking a fall. (Note: this is why handicap parking is so vital - people like ME get PISSED OFF if their loved ones don't have ingress and egress and WE are the ones y'all have to worry about because we're determined enough to take matters under our own four tires. Again, I digress.)

Once we were inside the rustic barn, this lovely blond chickie greeted us and invited us to have a little wine tasting, which we both thoroughly enjoyed although one of us more than the other - please refer back to the mention of a young blond. And I've digressed yet again....

We tried six different wines and ended up buying one bottle each of three of them. It was very instructional as to why we like the wines we do. We were well pleased with the staff and wine, and if the selections are as good with a meal as they were just sipping them on a hot spring day, I know we'll go back and stock up. Their prices weren't bad at all, and once again, I'm all about supporting small, local business. And the little four-bottle carry-all is pretty cool. I'll take that along whenever and wherever I get the next round of wine. I'm not bashful.

The one thing we do regret is not splurging on a bottle of their "port" wine. We'd never tasted "port" before and it had a wonderfully unique aroma and flavor, and had we been dogs, our ears would have pricked up. Another reason to go back to Knob Hall Winery.

We didn't make it to the three places in Harper's Ferry, West Virginia, but we will some future day when I'm not stuck at the day job. It's good to have something to look forward to.

So now we've come to the last hours of a Friday afternoon. We're rested from the hours spent driving around some of the most beautiful countryside you'll find anywhere and it's time for us to relax on the patio until the bugs drive us back inside. It was a good vacation. 


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