Landed at LAX last night feeling just a bit of pressure, we had made plans to meet our neighbors for our standing Monday night dinner at Mario’s. Before I left I took my beloved Flo, (the name of the car from the movie Cars, that Tyler got me for Valentine’s Day) across the way to my adorable four year old boyfriend and asked if he wouldn’t mind watching her while I was gone. We both take our Flo’s to Mario’s every Monday, and every Monday he yells across the parking lot of the restaurant, “Did you bring your Flo?” in that deep from the pit of his tiny little belly way. Each Monday I pull Flo from my purse and I get the big grin of approval which rings in the beginning of an evening of me being wooed and melted by the cutest kid…like ever. Well seeing as our flight was to land at around 5:00 pm and when you have dinner plans with a one and four year old it has to be pretty early, around 6:00 pm…I knew it would be cutting it too close to fly home from the airport, dump off my bags, grab Flo and run across the street in time for dinner. I figured having Tyler watch my toy and bring it to dinner would do two things; one let him know that I was coming back and two save me time or the sad face I would get for arriving without my Flo. I talked with him about it the afternoon before we left and being the serious kid, (he is ultra serious in some ways and a total goofball in others) that he is I knew my toy would be there at dinner.
We pulled into Mario’s parking lot at exactly the same time as the neighbors; I was dragging…just exhausted from the “relaxing” weekend full of booze and the flight from the other side of the country and still sporting my resort wear….a step up from the Resist Prohibition t-shirt that I usually toss on before our little Monday date. I felt a little pop of energy as I opened the car door; four days….I was only gone for four days and dammit if I didn’t miss that kid. I quickly made my way to their car as Mom was pulling my wee boyfriend from his car seat. I watched his tiny frame spin around, that big head full of blonde hair turn and those big, most expressive blue eyes I’ve ever seen just light up when he saw me. I stood there in my bright greenish yellow, longer in the front, open but draped sweater with my new lacy at the top, crinkled textured white tank top feeling like a fairy princess.
He quickly plunged his pudgy digits into the pocket of his jeans while yelling, (much louder than he needed to by the way) “Sam I have something for you!!” and extended his little arm…my Flo. I guess the plan was for him to pretend he forgot it but he was just so damned excited when he saw me that that little prank went right out the window, melted. We had a blast Tyler and I, a much more reserved dinner than usual; no face painting with Ranch dressing or ketchup and no blowing messy bubbles in our drinks, so I was a grown up for once and Tyler took my lead. Not sure if it was the time away or the outfit but he was so freaking shyly cuddly last night. Still playful and full of Tyler expression….which really is larger than life, I swear I will post video one day and you will all see what I am up against here. One friend upon joining us for one of our dinners said, “That kid could bring you the head of a dead kitten and yell “special delivery” and he would still be the most charming kid alive”.....big voice, big eyes, lots of gesturing, freaking adorable but he seemed much more interested in finding little ways to snuggle with me than playing cars. A very lovely homecoming I really must say but as I sat there in the middle of my bestest date ever, sipping my second margarita I couldn’t help but find myself still “missing” a bit.
“I think Tyler missed me a little” I said to his father when he came over later for a visit, “Yeah he hid it well” he responded. “Could he have found any more ways to lay his head on you and touch your shirt?” his father said wearing slightly pink cheeks and the tiniest, ‘That’s my boy” smirk. We laughed about it as I assured him that it was fine and in fact….it made me feel as special, and frankly beautiful as I had in days. I poured myself a second glass of Rose. The bright fruit, the freshness and vibrancy in that wine was just the little bump of life that I needed to get me through to bedtime but also gave me a taste of what it was that I was still missing….wine.
As those of you that read my Momma series might have gathered, May is kind of tough on me…this year a bit more than others as it is the ten year mark. I think that combination of Mother’s Day, her birthday, the last night I saw her and the anniversary of her death coming within two weeks of each other, well it can be a lot, consuming and not in a great way. I let that distraction and bit of reflection keep me from spending time with and really letting wine touch me. The Rose was a good reminder but it did not, could not have the power to reignite my fizzled out wine wick.
I opened a 2005 Chateau de Segries Cotes du Rhone this afternoon, a perfectly tasty wine that filled my palate and pleased me enough; nice dark fruit, deep violets and just a kiss of brown sugar with soft integrated tannin and a supple finish. Nice, quite nice really but like the Rose not quite enough to spin me, light me up, fill that little “missing” space that I have been unable to shake. I sat here awhile just trying to will it to be enough and wondering if I was stuck in the middle of some freaky wine slump. Not good, not good at all. That was when I made another pass by the old wine fridge, I tried to pretend that I was just looking things over…..just wondering what I had left but I knew why I was there. I needed to be made love to, seduced, have my protective layers peeled back and have something I love, something decadent, something that was going to shake me, plunged inside me.
I needed something that was going to flip all my switches; my palate, my body, my mind. I needed Burgundy. The second I committed to slipping the bottle out of its resting spot I knew we would spend the night together; no second guessing, no maybe I should waits….fuck if I could have opened a vein to feel this wine I might have. Ready…I was so ready to fall in love again, to feel in love again….to look at a bottle of wine the way that adorable four year old looked at me in Mario’s parking lot, excited, with wonder and thrilled that I still had the night ahead of me.
I peeled the foil from my last bottle of 2001 Comtes Lafon Volnay Santenots-du-Milieu and felt my pulse quicken, already feeling something. The cool neck of the bottle resting in my palm submissive as I pierced its cork and slowly pulled it from the bottle, each little detail noticed…cool bottle, tightening of my forearms, the sweet sound of a cork being pulled from a bottle and that glugging, sloshing sound of wine falling along the sides of a glass and landing upon itself. It was starting, I was beginning to feel that little missing spot fill. I spent five hours with this wine, five hours being pulled in, pushed back and completely lost in love.
Meaty and mushroomy with fine but grippy tannin at first. Red cherries, truffles and coco following that. Rose pedals, a sexy, soft body and that mouth watering want for more to finish. My head is still spinning; my palate fatigued but in that way that making love for hours can make you fatigued….spent, exhausted, mind reeling and that lust for more already making you think about the next time.
How do you do that?