(Channeling the Golden Girl Sophia Petrillo here.) Picture it...June 1995. A teenage girl takes her first trip away from her home and her parents. But, it's not just a trip to a neighboring city, it's a trip across the Atlantic Ocean...all the way to Europe. Yes, as you may have figured out by now, this girl was me.
It was during summer break 1995, that I, along with about 15 others from my high school, Hurricane High, took a school trip to Europe. Specifically to France, Switzerland and Italy. Now, I was only 14 years old at the time so unfortunately, much of my memory of the trip has faded and I can only remember flashes here and there. But something that I do remember as if it were just yesterday is the trip we made to a vineyard in Bourne, France. I have no idea what the name of the vineyard was, but I remember going through the shop at the vineyard and picking out the perfect bottle of red wine. I couldn't believe my naive little ears when I learned that I, fourteen year old little me, was allowed to purchase wine. That certainly would not have happened at home, but in France, it was all good. And, that excited me. Not only did it excite me, but all of my other traveling companions as well.
I picked out the perfect wine and took it up to the counter. I flashed a braces encrusted smile at the nice French man who checked me out, all the time hoping he wouldn't realize how young I was and how taboo this very act would be in my own country. But, he didn't and I carried my wine, bottled in Bourne, France in 1985, back to the tour bus and then back to our hotel.
When it was time to end our European vacation, I bundled my prized bottle of 1985 red into my dirty laundry bag and covered it with clothes. Mostly because I didn't want it to break on the trip back, but also because I was terrified of what would happen if Customs found it in the possession of a fourteen year old girl. Luckily, the wine was never found and I carried it home where I proudly showed it to my family before deciding that I would save this wine for a special occasion. Perhaps, my wedding. So, there my wine sat for years and years, waiting for the special occasion.
Finally, the special occasion was upon us...my wedding in September 2010. However, with the chaos of the pre-wedding, wedding and post-wedding festivities I completely forgot about my special occasion wine, purchased more than fifteen years ago. It wasn't until just recently that I remembered it, after my wedding passed and when I began packing up my apartment in preparation to move to Ireland to be with my husband. Of course I realized that I couldn't take it with me to Ireland, so I needed to drink it now. So, I took it to my mother's house on Christmas Eve where my mom, my brother and I decided to crack it open, finally. I mean, why wait for a special occasion. Every day we get should be considered a special occasion, right?
So, I was given the first glass and as I brought the glass to my lips, I imagined this would be the best tasting wine I'd ever had and the wine finally hit my tongue. And, this is where the exciting story ends. IT WAS AWFUL! Terrible! Enough to make a person puke! We didn't get a picture of the sour wine face I made at the taste of it, but if we did, it is safe to say it would have looked something like this:
I don't think it was a bad wine. In fact, it probably would have tasted fine if it had been bottled correctly, but we don't think it was. The cork, as we were taking it out of the bottle, basically disintegrated into a million little pieces, so that wasn't a good sign to start with. So anyway, the years of anticipation over this wine ended with that awful face you see above and I couldn't help but be disappointed in how much I had looked forward to the special occasion wine only to discover it was no good.
I guess the moral of the story is to not save things for a special occasion and treat every day as that special occasion, because if you wait, you may end up with a face like that one up there...and who wants that? Luckily, my sour wine face went away and it has molded itself back to my normal face. Thank goodness!