Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Wine on the brain

Living within close proximity of one of the US’s premier wine grape growing regions, Sonoma and Napa Valley, means that tasting and discovering new wine is part of the lifestyle, and tourists aren’t the only ones tasting at the wineries. Being a member of a winery has advantages that locals can take advantage of, and some include complementary flight tasting and enjoying annual picnics and events. Three include: Steele Winery in Lakeport, CA (Lake County), Navarro Vineyards in Navarro, CA (Mendocino County) Taft Winery in Sebastopol (Sonoma County).

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Respect your Elders

One thing that each of us has to deal with (if we live long enough) is that growing old will happen. And as we get older, life seems to speed up at a rate that brings back the voice of your parent saying "I don't know how I got to be this old." But we do, and they did. I think that we should revisit our connection to growing old and our disconnect and denial about the subject. The fact is if you don't grow old; you won't get to experience important years of life. We need to celebrate our birthdays, and with the respect for our years on the planet, not letting our cultural insecurities take over. Age = Wisdom.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Far Away Family

Over the past decade it's been customary for me to fly from West to East Coast to visit my immediate, nuclear family. Some years I look forward to summer visits where I can spend time in an idyllic east coast stupor without going to places like the Hamptons, Marthas Vineyard or Fire Island. Just the regular enjoyment of visiting the old Westchester, NY town that I grew up in, and even though high school is over 20 years away, I'm still hoping to run into a high school friend at one of the local French patisseries that cropped up but wasn't around when I was a teenager. I think that it is important to make plans to visit family and friends. It keeps us all young in spirit.

More support needed for the Elderly

When you hear that an elderly man or woman has fallen and broken bones; usually a hip, it's a reminder that mobility and balance declines as we age. In San Francisco, it is not uncommon to see a fragile senior walking across the street. My heart goes out each time, especially when all alone and definitely needing some human assistance, care or interaction. The mixed message here is that many elderly people are lonely, especially if living alone, and with few family and friends to visit with. There are many fragile ones who should be using a rolling walker (a walker with wheels and 4 legs; not a cane.) I have seen too many old people hunched over, trying to cross a busy driving street (Van Ness Street) with impatient drivers ready to gun the gas as soon as a green light comes. This puts the elderly person in a very dangerous situation. The curbs with a cane can also be very dangerous, so can climbing up the stairs of a bus, without help. If you are young and able, take the time to be a loving person and offer your help.