Now some of you may be wondering what a respectable basic non-drinker like myself was doing in a Winery … and I was kind of wondering that myself … but still …
As some of you know, I make the trek to Happy Valley on a pretty regular basis to lend my support to the local NPR station there. As in …
*ahem* “You’re listening to All Things Considered … heard on WPSU – State College and WPSX – Kane” … yes … well … there’s that …
And while I am up there, I try to come up with things to do that would not be found here closer to my house. And thus begineth the long trek.
GPS notwithstanding, I thought I would make an educated guess and try to find a location that will most definitely be included in a future Happy Holly Project entry … but not today.
Today I got totally lost in the beautiful countryside somewhere between Happy Valley and the End of the Earth. And the views were absolutely spectacular. When suddenly … out in the middle of nowhere … was a sign for a local Winery … with tours … Open to the Public, they said … and I thought “What the heck? Why not?”
Following the small blue signs even further into Oblivion-ville I finally arrived at the promised destination.
An absolutely breathtaking view.
Or as their website states “(It) commands a breathtaking view across the valley to the distant Tussey Mountain Range. Just seven miles east of State College and Penn State University, the vineyard and winery are located in the heart of 65 acres of land which stretches to the top of Mount Nittany.”
Looking inside the open door I saw the complete set-up. Hardly worthy of being called a tour … but the man was really nice and showed me some of the equipment used by the folks in preparing their wine.
He also pointed me upstairs to the wine tasting area … where I could also “buy some of the wine.”
Er, yes … buy … wine … well I suppose I do have some friends who do drink wine now that you mention it. So I proceeded up the winding wooden stairway to the second floor tasting and buying shop.
And after failing to follow the instructions on the door (“turn knob and push”) I noisily entered the small shop … to the stares of all eight people inside.
Mumbling an apologetic “Must have meant the OTHER push” I laughed and looked around the shop.
Two people left.
Cute. Country. Lots of non-alcoholic organic gifty things … and of course their wines … and a long wine tasting counter.
Now, for those of you who do not know me … I’m friendly. As my brother said in his eighth-grade autobiography (which as you might imagine was quite extensive) “My sister could fall into a bucket of worms and make friends”. What can I say? I like people.
So before too long I had struck up casual conversations with most of the remaining folks there.
On the door, on the tasting bar, at the checkout and several other places was the sign “All people will be carded, regardless.”
So I said to the gal behind the counter “Oh card me … PLEASE” as a joking reference to my obvious age and lack of need for carding. She laughed … and a cute twenty something said “Hey, I’d be happy to card you anytime!”
After admiring the view and quiet picnic like area at the lake outside the door, I selected some organic honey and a bottle of dessert wine (and if you are a drinking friend of mine, don’t be surprised if I show up on your doorstep with said bottle) and proceeded to the checkout counter.
At this point, Mr. I’d Be Happy turned and said “Hey, take a look at this …. I can show you my buddies ID Card” as he flashed the card at me.
Now, maybe I was supposed to see the birthdate and make a comment … which of course I couldn’t, since my bifocals don’t stretch that far. Or maybe I was supposed to recognize his name … since they were both acting like BMOC guys might act.
But instead, I looked down at the card and saw the picture of his buddy … sporting a big full beautiful handlebar moustache … which he no longer had. And of course I said “Hey, nice ‘stache!” and laughed.
Now this all might not sound like the makings of a Happy Holly Project entry to you … but to me the whole experience was … delightful? … entertaining? … fun?
Or put more succinctly … Oh, how I love the combination of too much wine tasting and unbridled hormones … even at my age …