Saturday, July 8, 2017

From Horseheads, NY: July 8, 2017

     What the hell, I can’t run around to the wineries until they actually open, right? So I might as well write something.

     There aren’t many major industries left in continental New York. Outside the Metro Zone, the state has been economically sluggish until quite recently. The resurgence is due entirely to a single commodity: wine.

     Whoever it was who discovered that New York grapes make excellent white wines deserves to be hailed as a hero of the region. The dozens upon dozens of wineries that have sprung up in recent years have created thousands of jobs, many in support industries, and are also greatly appreciated by New York’s languishing tourist industry. Nearly all those wineries are respected in the field. A few of them have become internationally known – and they deserve it. Trust me on that.

     Sad to say, few of them will ship. Even sadder, the C.S.O. and I are in Joy, my 2009 Corvette convertible. Yes, it has a trunk. (That wasn’t always the case with the Corvette.) No, there’s no space in said trunk for anything but our bags. You pays your money and you takes your choice.

     The Holiday Inn where we’re staying is also host to several youth softball teams. Apparently there’s a tournament in progress this weekend. These kids are an absolute joy to be around: bright, energetic but courteous, and excited beyond words about participating in the tournament. They remind me of my own younger days, when good behavior, courtesy toward adults, and enthusiasm for something was the norm among youngsters of either sex.

     And yes, all the girls are actual girls. The recent phenomenon of transwomen participating in female sports competitions hasn’t touched this tournament. Other sporting events haven’t been quite so lucky.

     Renee Richards was only the first; there will be more.

     One of the cruelties of age is dietary restriction: can’t eat this; can’t eat that; must restrain yourself around this other thing. For some, it’s about not gaining weight the old skeleton and joints would strain to support. For others, it’s a metabolic failing such as Type II Diabetes. But today is National Chocolate With Almonds Day! You don’t want to miss that celebration, so diets be damned for once!

     Besides, chocolate supercharges your brain. This has been proved by Science, comrades! You don’t want to argue with Science, do you?

     One thing we always do when on the road is stick strictly to bottled water. Even in the United States, regional variations in water can be quite a surprise to one’s say nothing of one’s taste buds. Before you check in at your hotel, stop at a local grocery, buy a six-pack of any of the decent bottled waters, and keep it in your hotel room. If you have a coffee maker in your hotel room – these days, most do – use bottled water to make your morning coffee. You’ll thank me.

     Alcoholic beverages, of course, are a different matter. The alcohol kills the nasties very effectively. But don’t eat the ice cubes.

     That’s all for the moment, Gentle Reader. Perhaps I’ll be back later, after I’ve had a snootful. That could be most entertaining, so check back after dinner. Until then!

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