So funny thing... this week, as I started to feel better, my car died. My trusty little green Honda Civic finally decided to quit. On a Tuesday. Were there any signs? Only 30 minutes before it died did it give me any indication. It's normally fantastic air conditioning - I mean, literally, the car can be 110 degrees inside and once I start it up and turn on the AC, it cools right down to a comfortable 65 in mere minutes. Not bad for a little economy car.
So, on Tuesday, as I was headed back home from 3 very good account visits in Santa Monica and Venice, the air conditioning started to not work as terrifically as it usually does. It was spitting out lukewarm air instead of ice cold. Weird, but I didn't think it was terminal. A bit later, as I was coasting down the freeway, the "check engine" light came on. Not good. But again, didn't think it was terminal. And, the AC started picking up again... yay! Did I specifically check the temperature gauge of the car? No, not specifically. My eyes didn't wander to that part of the dash... but in retrospect, that would have been a good idea. But there was no smoke coming out of my car, and I decided to continue driving toward home till there was a safe place I could pull over.
Well, I pulled into my local post office, went in to stock up on Bart Simpson stamps.... found out they had some new cool ones called Sunday Funnies - got some of those too - came out, thought, well maybe my car got over it, maybe the check engine light won't go on after I start it.
The car started, but it wasn't making pretty noises. Something was definitely amiss. The check engine light remained on. The car sputtered a bit. I drove toward the exit of the PO parking lot. Then the car stalled, right at the exit.
I managed to turn the engine and maneuver the car over to a parking space. I managed to call AAA (what an awesome service - yay AAA!) The rest is history - car towed, the diagnosis - major overheating leading to major internal organ damage, and what they said could not have happened quickly (meaning what?? that I've been driving with a messed up car for ages and I missed all this? my fault, I guess).
Anyway, short story long, today, I'm on my feet, walking if I need to get anywhere. I needed to go to the ATM machine, so I walked a little over a mile toward downtown in my village to go to the ATM.
On my way, I checked out a new wine bar. It was closed, but I pressed my nose to the window to check it out. I had heard that it had opened. I wonder how it does. My impression is that I'm not impressed. I'll tell you why.
I likely won't go drinking there. It's the location. It's located at the base of a tower of a nursing home. This nursing home is in a historic building in the downtown of my village. It has a high-end restaurant at the top, on the 13th floor or something like that. I have been there. It's nice. The food is average. I'm not a huge fan of the location, though, because it's in a nursing home. And now they have a wine bar on the first floor, a tiny place. And I'm wondering, who wants to go to a wine bar on the first floor of a nursing home?
My issue is that wine is more than a beverage. It's an aura. A fantasy. A romantic escape. It's not that the aura is unreal or not realistic, but it is a delicious fantasy and it doesn't jive mentally with the image of your heirs putting you in an institution when you're 90 because your mental faculties have left you and you're demented and can't swallow and you're prescribed a pureed diet with thickened liquids and you are not allowed to drink any alcohol because you're on 10 different medications. Wine has nothing to do with the sad end that befalls people when they are institutionalized and demoralized and need to walk with a walker and need caregivers to wipe their butts and give them baths and cut up their food. When people are drinking wine, they are thinking romantic wonderful good-life thoughts, sitting in a chateau overlooking gorgeous vineyards, sunny day, birds in the air, your lover looking into your eyes, conversation flowing, the food coming out of the kitchen the best and freshest you've ever tasted, the restaurant staff loving you for appreciating the finer things in life, you're laughing, enjoying, feeling like this will go on for all eternity, and it will because you'll always have fine wine, you'll always have your terrific cellar full of gems, you'll always have your neighborhood restaurant where they love you and you are always welcome, and you'll always have your lover, your friends, your beautiful family members all around you, laughing and loving and being and enjoying the best that life has to offer.
This is why people drink wine. It is all these things. All the good things in life.
And that's why I don't think wine bars belong in nursing homes, hospitals, another places where those delicious thoughts clash in our brains and make us frown.
Wine is about the good life and the never ending good time.