Now that my copy of ‘Wine – A Way of Life‘ has crossed the equator at least three times now, I must tell you that the main reason for this, is that I just simply cannot put it down.
No, it is not glued to my hands with superglue (both are needed as it`s a heavy one), and No it’s not the greatest read either. It is just that I want to finish the dam thing, and I cannot. It has put a spell on me and my jealousies, and weighs in at 1.5kgs of them. The book turns to 317 pages and a few empties to boot at the back (notes maybe?), and is making me feel depressed. Why? I do not know, yet!
For a book that was only published two months a go, I think that it could now be a contender for The Guinness Book of Records (if it still exists?) as being the most travelled wine book in the world, and ontop of that maybe the most journeyed book in the history of literature, in the shortest possible time. London – Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires – Lisbon, Lisbon – London (via Oporto), London – Sao Paolo, and finally Sao Paolo to Buenos Aires. All took place during the month of June, when they had the splendid launch party @ 67 P-M, to the end of July 2018, as I am now typing this.
There is something very much about the Tony Lasts’ here, that I just cannot shrug off. But as you may recall, when dear olde Tony, in Waugh’s `A Handful of Dust`, discovers in the Amazonian rainforest, that Mr Todd has duped him into reading the complete works of Dickens for the rest of his life, I have somewhat a similar feeling when it come to Mister Spurrier’s account of his life in the hands of the English, sorry British, Wine Trade and his long suffering girlfriend Bella, who does eventually become Mrs Spurrier, and various friends and anecdotes that are thrust at us, the readers, on this journey. So …
Leaving the bubbling beverage to cool,
Fresca slips softly to the needful stool,
Where the pathetic tale of Richardson
Eases her labour till the deed is done …
So every time the search party comes close by to rescue me (as in Tony Last?), in other words I am well on my way to finishing the dam thing, I feel that I am being drugged, totally against my wishes of course, and kept under the spell of The Spurrier Saga, and find myself still reading it. Please, I just want to finish the tale as I have other stuff, more important, to read. Maybe Netflix can take it over, and then we can all be done and dusted with it, unless you actually subscribe to Netflix of course. It would make a good mini series, maybe?
And when it comes to mixing wine and literature, of course Anthony Hanson’s Burgundy was excellent, Edmund Penis-Arousal’s book on Bordeaux was super, Alexis Lichine’s (well it’s an Encyclopedia isn’t it) still comes out from the bookshelf now and then, when I am asked about a Turkish or a Greek grape variety spelling. Even that short read on Alsace & it’s Vineyards by Pamela Vindictive-Dyke was once upon a time, really quite essential reading. And of course one of the most enjoyable vinous reads I have ever unexpectantly come across was in, the late, Paul Torday’s novel ‘The Irresistable Inheritance of Wilberforce’, where Wilberforce spends six thousand pounds on two bottles of 1982 Petrus for his dinner in a London restaurant, and polished them both off on his own. The rest I will leave for you to discover on your own dear reader, as it is well worth it.
As I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
And let me tell you, you buggers, there are absolutely no minerals to be found in that cuppa`dusty nectar, just the reality of one`s sorrowful eventuality. Blaaaaaah!
Changing the tone, the subject slightly. And a positive one at that!
We had, or have, a winner of last month`s competition.
WELL DONE! and thanks to all of you for sending in your efforts. We were simply in-undated!
You can now engorge in harm with our friend from Weimar, Herman G. who wins the trip to Mendoza (photos will follow I hope, clean, as he promised).
And the `runner-upper` for the case of Argy-red (easy for delivery thank goodness), was a local man. Michael Fangio who sped into second place, with easily the second best reply of all. Broom broom!
May your Gods go with you all