If you’re looking for a good, inexpensive chardonay, don’t get the Chateau St. Jean, for what it’s worth. I drink seldom, and I try to make it worth my while when I do have a drink. Chateau St. Jean has a hint of soap suds in the bouquet, and a lingering after-taste of nail polish remover. Granted, I didn’t pay much for this bottle, and bought it on a whim, so I get what I deserve here. Still, with half-a-jigger of lemon juice per glass, it’s acceptable.
I’m celebrating the removal of the last vestiges of Christmas this evening. Two trees, a wreath (thrown into the fireplace for disposal; a mistake, like the wine, that I shan’t make again), assorted X-massy do-dads, Christmas cards on the mantel, lights from the bannister … all are now relegated back to their basement dungeon, sentenced to another year in boxes stored in unvisited corners. The Professor took the lights off the main tree, and disassembled it for me, which is a big help. I like lights on a tree, and lots of them. The seven foot tree in the den has a thousand lights on it each year, all intertwined and jiggered up just-so. If you can follow the string of lights from one light to the next when it’s on the tree, then I consider my job ill-done. A perfectly executed tree has lights so randomly distributed that you don’t know how the strings are placed from just looking at the tree. It makes for a bitch of a tree to take down once the festivities are over.
This year the cats broke nothing. I found a couple of the smallest glass balls on the floor in the living room behind assorted pieces of furniture, but they were all intact. Since they were all cheap balls, I’m not surprised that they endured a month of cat-and-mousing. It’s the expensive ones that fail the hale-and-hardy test that cats put them through. This year though, the only fatality among the good, hand-blown imported balls was my own fault. I dropped the ball on the carpet while decorating the tree, and it slowly rolled about six feet across the carpet to gently bounce against the metal stand for the Italian glass table I spent too much on. I chased it the entire way, only inches behind it. The damned thing hit the stand of the table so gently that it made a barely audible "tink", then shattered into a dozen pieces. Another one down, twenty-two to go. At this rate they should last another two hundred and twenty years.
Now I’m sitting in the living room, fire blazing in the fireplace, listening to Gene Shay’s folk music show on WXPN (http://www.xpn.org/), drinking my celebratory end-of season wine and waiting for Battlestar Galactica and snow. One I expect in half-an-hour, the other I rather hope doesn’t make an appearance. The cats are arranged like casualties of the day about the den, in various positions of repose. It’s a good evening.