I say this now having been free of wine for over a week now. Not because I don’t like wine, but because a recent health condition caused me to stop partaking of alcohol. I currently have a profusion of chemicals careening around my system: steroids, antibiotics, morphine, iodine, aspirin, ibuprofen. Alcohol is just one more toxic substance to me right now.
Odd, because I wax about wine on the posts of this blog, for years now. And then, something happens; a window opens to a new perspective and all of a sudden it’s a whole new day. Will I ever go back? Will wine have the hold on me that it does for so many of my colleagues? I know I can live without wine, easily. I do not crave it. I see friends of mine, who have to "get their drink on", have to have one more glass of wine at the end of the night. For some time now I have been thinking about alcohol poisoning. I’ve had this mechanism inside me, when I have been in a group and the bottles were opening and wine was flowing and I just had had enough. “What, don’t you want to try this bottle of 1964 Carema?” a friend would ask. “I think my body has had enough,” I would reply. And I meant it.
The last quarter of 2015 really kicked me hard, work-wise. I hit it hard, worked to make some crazy goals, made some ridiculous deals. Brought in the numbers.
And then 2016 kicked, and along with it with a hectic travel schedule. Too much. Traveling sick. Always on an airplane, always around someone who wasn’t as well as they should have been, someone sneezing, sniffling, sloughing off skins cells into the contained atmosphere of the time bombs planes have become. It was inevitable. And it got me. And went to my weak spot.
I say this not for sympathy or concern. I am on the mend and I will return to full health. It wasn't like a stroke or a heart attack or some incurable cancer. Nothing like that. More like exhaustion, not paying attention to the signs around me, pushing myself too hard. And letting alcohol, wine that is, control the process. Making it more important than it is in the scheme of things.
Coming out of the fog I found myself in this past few weeks, I realize that balance , not only in wine, but in life, is more important than acid, than minerality, than fruit, or wood, or expression or concentration. Too much of a good thing is just that – too much.
Nothing above me – nothing below me – no leaping. Not yet. Just a time to rebalance. For now.
written and photographed (Palermo~1971) by Alfonso Cevola limited rights reserved On the Wine Trail in Italy
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