Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Back from the West

Many days have passed since my last private post--weeks even. The activity that consumed my life for the first of those weeks is chronicled here and here. Now for the activity of the last week...

My spouse and I joined friends in Los Angeles and wandered up to the Paso Robles area following the trail of Sideways. As was required, we drank a lot. We arrived on Thursday and spent the afternoon sampling wines brought from the Kentucky contingent's vineyard and eating big slabs of grilled red meat. Yum.

The next day we hit five wineries, and the following day six. Even though we live in The South where God forbid you should get wine in the mail, I went ahead and joined five wineries' wine clubs and got on the waiting list for a sixth. All the wine has to be shipped to my in-laws who live in a sensible state (Illinois) and I will have to pick it up twice a year when I am up there visiting and for shows.

Our last tourist hurrah was Hearst Castle, one of the estate homes of William Randolph Hearst. It was most impressive to me for the fact that everything, all the engineering and architectural design--even down to purchasing the Icelandic moss to feed the property's reindeer, was done by a woman, Julia Morgan (1872-1957). I was so awed by her work that I am tempted to purchase her biography on Amazon... and I am not usually a biography woman!

I leave you with a few labels (and one photo for the winery with no label on the web) mapping out our debauchery.


ren said...

i went to hearst castle very unwillingly and ended up really liking the tour. and yes, julia morgan is even more impressive than the building itself.

hey, they are trying to turn over all those stupid wine shipping and reciprocity laws (ken starr is the one making the push, go figure). imagine, i live in california but what i really want is wine from new jersey AND I CAN'T GET IT!!

Bill Paley said...

The actual count was six and seven the first two days, then Jeff and I went to six more while you went to the Castle. On the day after the heavy rains, Jeff, Deena, Bridget and I went down to Temecula to go to another six. Oy!

Brenda Griffith said...

Oh boy, which ones did I miss?

Chris said...

Sound like a cool trip.

We live in Alabama where you can't order wine by mail, either. I was/am trying to find a bottle of Chateau Palmer for our wedding anniversary, but I guess I'll have to do it in another state or pay extra for the local wine store to try to get it for me.

I was in D.C. last year having lunch at a fancy restaurant and, as I was going to the restroom, looked into one of the private rooms and Fess Parker was there hosting a private wine tasting. Up until then, I had no idea he was still alive.

Bill Paley said...

To find out what you missed, you'll have to read yesterday's posts...

Jodi said...

I'd love to go to Hearst Castle. I've driven by it once. I was impressed by the zebras along the side of the road that still live on the property.

I don't really drink wine, but it sounds like you had fun.

Serena Moon said...

Hey Brenda, looks like you were in my neck of the woods. You may remember me from Paxson Grade School and later Hellgate High. I moved to California in 1983 and now reside in San Jose.

Glad to see you had a wonderful time in Paso Robles. A good friend of mine (from Missoula) was the accountant for Fess Parker -- a label I see you've added here. And my better half works for Southern Wine & Spirits... so wine is a common theme at our house. Looks like you picked some great places to visit on your trip.

By the way, you haven't changed a bit. I think I may still have a picture of you in The Lance Room. Probably doing layouts with Troy or Steve.

Take care! Good to see your face again!

--Serena Moon