Tuesday, 25 September 2012

The wine lifestyle without drinking wine!

We went to our place in the Hunter Valley last weekend.  It was the first time we had been there in about two months.  We did not tour wineries, we did not drink wine, we did not go out (we ate every meal at home) after we arrived, but we still enjoyed the 'wine lifestyle.'  Surrounded by vineyards, taking in the greenery of the newly budding vines, and watching regeneration start to bloom was extremely exciting.

Hiking the Great Northern Walk through Mount View, NSW

I went hiking along the Great Northern Walk, we also hiked the Hunter Valley Gardens (where we have an annual pass for the very reasonable price of $85 per year and visit many, many times), we watched The Bourne Identity, and mostly we just chilled in our place taking in the great views, reading, and a little bit of blogging.  It was wonderful and we did not spend any money!  We just had a wonderful time utilizing what we already had - a house to stay in, the use of the annual pass and food in the fridge.

View from back porch in Hunter Valley

With the unbelievable quiet, we slept like babies and shared quiet time together and without any constraints of scheduling anything in advance, we were able to choose what to do at a moment's notice.  I completely shut down my 'work' brain and was able to relax.  And we are going to do it all again this upcoming long weekend.  We will have four straight days in the Hunter.  We do have one meal scheduled with great friends for Saturday lunch and we will be drinking more wine from our cellar.  Again, there will be limited schedule constraints and no cost (other than what we have already spent) to enjoy time in the Hunter Valley.

Chardonnay vines on our place in Hunter Valley

I love walking among the vines, love watching the early stages of the wine production process, and am filled with hope for a great vintage and the upcoming season.  Taking in nature and the views and being able to let my mind room free was a tremendously relaxing and recharging experience.  Yes, I could have an unencumbered weekend in Sydney, but I would not feel like we were getting away, nor have the quietude we achieved in the Hunter Valley.  Plus being among the vines, driving past the great wineries and smelling the fresh air made me feel I was living the wine lifestyle, even when not drinking wine.

But that will change for this long weekend.  I have some great wines planned, including sharing a bottle of the 1999 Meerea Park Alexander Munro Semillon and the 1992 Lindemans Pyrus with our good friends at Saturday lunch.

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