I have always believed few things in life are as sumptuously fabulous as a cup of freshly brewed aromatic coffee. Until I found the perfect mix of adventure, ambience, savory taste, and aroma in a glass—wine.
For most of my adult life, I had sampled wines in various places and countries, but I never really enjoyed it. I didn’t know much about wine, and invariably I ordered something too sweet and ended up not being particularly fond of it.
A few years ago, I made some new friends who appreciate wine and thus know a bit about it. They have introduced me to several wines that I truly like, and in the process, turned wine tasting into a new adventure. They immersed me in the world of discovering of new wines, learning wine making processes, and meeting other adventurous wine-lovers.
On my way to record my podcast, I often pass the DoveRidge Winery. It is a beautiful vineyard on the top of a hill with a view for miles. Not too long ago, they opened a tasting room on the edge of one of their more mature vineyards.
One day, on a whim, I stopped in and instantly found my happy place. I fell in love—not just with the ambiance of the location and the taste of their wines, but also with the people who created and manage the vineyard. They are the most friendly, helpful, and outgoing type of Texans you want to be friends with. And, they make you feel like family.
The DoveRidge winery is located off Tucker Road in Weatherford, Texas. Hopefully, they will soon be open to the public again. In the meantime, you can drive up and buy wine to go. My current favorite is their Malbec, but unfortunately, they are out of it right now. The second-best option, in my opinion, is the Temparnillo. You’re welcome.
This past Saturday, they were planting new vines and invited the public to help. Several local residents showed up, and our job was to plant the new vines in rows with a mixture of top soil and sand. The ground was barren, dusty, rocky, and hard. The vines looked like sticks with a few roots dangling on the end.
I remember thinking, How is anything going to grow in this rocky soil? But when I looked around me, the breathtaking views and their mature vineyards showed just how hospitable Texas land can be.
All this made me think how, in our journey through life, we often find ourselves planted in hard, dusty, rocky soil. We can allow it to hold us there, or we can learn to be hospitable to growth—to stretch forward and grow into something beautiful. Life is not easy; it never has been, and it never will be.
Don’t get sidetracked by talking about the “good old days.” We are living in the best times right here and now. If we see the potential in ourselves and strive to reach that, we can become like the vines at DoveRidge—producing fruit that turns into something wonderful.
In my former career, I spent a season in a country that had plenty of hard, rocky ground. Conditions were miserable, especially for a girl like me who has standard needs—like caring for my hair, nails, and eyelashes, and of course, access to toilet paper. (We all understand this deprivation a bit more these days!)
While there, I made a friend who had overcome hardships we Americans can’t even fathom. She left me with these words: “It’s not about the outside environment; it’s about what’s in your heart.” God has given us strength and courage, and He will provide solace when we need it. We must not let where we are now define us.
Think of the prickly pear—they live in hard conditions, yet they thrive. And when you open up the young leaves, they are pleasing to the palate.
One final thought. A perfect drink would be a mix of both coffee and red wine…don’t you think?