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Not-So-Mute Monday: Embassy Suites Airport, San Fran Hotel

October 20, 2014

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Big room with separate television room, free breakfast with made-to-order omelets & all the bacon I could eat (that’s a lot of bacon!) & they are part of the Hilton Hotel family, like Hampton Inn – why stay anywhere else!

First Day: Napa Wineries

October 14, 2014

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Oh my goodness, where to begin…

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First tasting of the day: Opus One. I say it again – OH MY GOODNESS!
Unusual grounds, very different architecture for Napa. Beautiful! Round building almost buried underground. Green grass. Olive trees line the driveway in & are all around the garden siting area. A rooftop terrace gave a wonderful view of the rising sun. A 10 am tasting is an early start to the day.

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Plumpjack Winery – we had never heard of this small vineyard/winery, but it was recommended by DH’s friend, Jim. Small, boutique winery making lovely wines.

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I met the long-furred calico keeping watch over the tasting room. Bright green eyes – she’s gorgeous & liked having her neck scratched.

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Cakebread Winery next.

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The first truly great wine I ever tasted was a Cakebread Fumé Blanc back in 1982. It rocked my world! Up until then, DH & I enjoyed Gallo Red Rosé with our dear friends D & J while playing Bridge. Hey – DH was in medical school! We didn’t have any money! But we started what was to become a lifelong love of wine.

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Hint: use the Gallo for wonderful wine coolers! Half a glass of Gallo over ice, then add sparkling water, Diet Sprite, etc. to fill the glass. A slice of lime finishes it!

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Silver Oak Winery was next. OH MY GOODNESS IN SPADES! This is one of the pre-imminent wineries in Napa, so good, in fact, that they do not have a Wine Club. They don’t need one – they sell every delicious bottle, every single season!

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The Silver Oak building is lovely. I took lots of photos hoping to show our builder – can we make our house look like this? :0)

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My tastebuds were fatiguing, but we were determined to visit St. Supery. Lovely wines from a beautiful winery.

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The gardens along the parking lot had large bright blue ceramic pots with dwarf citrus trees. (Envy!) Inside the tasting room, the winemakers Boxer puppy greeted everyone…calmly! That’s remarkable for a puppy!

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Are we there yet? Nope! With only one day scheduled for Napa, we had to visit Chateau Montelena. This is one of the famous wineries that put Napa Valley, California on the map, literally! In 1976, the Chardonnay from Ch. Montelena soundly defeated French wines in a blind taste-test. They repeated the fete in 2006! Woo Hoo! American wines can compete with the best in the world & consistently WIN!

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First I spoke to the little Redwood tree on the property that I first saw 10 years ago on our first visit. My, how it has grown! Then we entered the French-style chateau. This is a beautiful place with dark wood, tapestries & excellent wines. The “bar cat” from years ago was not present, but the wines did not disappoint.

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The second tasting room was quiet, the Chardonnay wonderful – DUH! & exquisite deep red Cabernets. Ahh! So very glad we stopped in!

Tastebuds exhausted, it’s time to head back to the Hampton Inn. Water, rest, supper, wine – are you kidding? No, he wasn’t.

Mute Monday: From Martinelli’s Tasting Room

October 13, 2014

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Napa Wineries

October 12, 2014

Visiting Napa/Sonoma, California with dear husband. Details to come.

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Ripe grape clusters have not been harvested from some vines.
This photo was taken in the vineyard next to Plumpjack Winery.

A Visit To California’s Wine Country

October 10, 2014

DH wanted to take a few days & taste some California wines at the source. Our dear friends who were supposed to join us had a last minute situation & had to back out. Color me disappointed.

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We flew Southwest Airline, our favorite, because I have a Companion Pass (FLY FREE!) for a year (DH flies a lot with his consulting job right now.) BNA to CMW to SFO. Delayed a few hours due to morning storms in Dallas. A chance to catch up on my reading!

From San Fran, we drove to the Sonoma/Napa area – a PGA event tied up tons of hotel rooms in the vicinity. Hampton Inn offers a clean room & free breakfast at a reasonable price & with all DH’s travels, he’s a Gold Member. The exercise room has clean towels & cold water. Breakfast has protein, fat & hot water for tea. Works for me!

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We shop at Whole Foods for our picnic selections & supper after a long day tasting wines. Gallons of drinking water, too!

Wines to taste. Wines for lunch & supper. Wines shipped home. Wines packed in our suitcases. Whew! This is hard work! NOT!

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Lunch at the picnic tables behind the Oakville Grocery, with a Redwood standing guard.

A Rant: They Are Employees!

October 2, 2014

I haven’t ranted about anything in a while, so there’s no time like the present.

I am sick to death of hearing about “workers” this & “workers” that. The last time I looked we were not a completely Communistic nation (yet) & therefore we do not have “workers!” (Where people are told what job they may have, where they may live, get paid whether they do a good job or not… hmm…)

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We have EMPLOYEES! Someone applies for a job. Someone hires them for said job. That means they are EMPLOYEES! NOT WORKERS!

Sheesh! This is Communistic, unionist, liberal/progressive lingo used to demoralize business owners for putting out the effort, having the guts to step out & start a business & make a success of it by putting their heart & soul & very many hours every single day into the business!

I am sick of it!

The next time I hear a talking head on the television mention “workers” when discussing employment issues in the United States of America as opposed to the Peoples Republic of China, I am texting, emailing, calling to complain!

You have now been warned!

By the way, the rest of you who just parrot whatever you have heard the talking heads say – STOP IT! Think for yourself, for crying out loud!

Oh, & no one is owed a job! No one is owed a living! One must do the work to earn a living! Getting hired for a job has been tough these past 6 years, especially for some young people I know, but that hasn’t stopped them!

I digress… breathe, sigh, breathe

OK… I feel better!
Have a nice day.

Post Script: Already sent my first complaint email to Bret Baier of Fox News!

Who Is John Galt? The Movie

October 1, 2014

Who is John Galt?
I just saw the third & final installment of Atlas Shrugged.
Why did they change the cast with every movie? Given a choice I would take the cast of the first one. (“Dead Man Walking from NCIS – love it!)

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If you haven’t seen the first 2 movies, you will not understand this one.
This one has lots of scenic Colorado mountain shots, but little action, little expository dialogue.

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At the end of Atlas Shrugged 2, I heard D.B. Sweeney’s voice… But that’s not who I heard when the third movie opened…

I had wanted this series to be what it could be – really great films from an excellent novel. I still love the topic, the ideas. The movies just were not what they could have/should have been.

Next question – why? Lack of funding! It’s hard to get cash when you are going to bite the hand that gives it out.

Don’t ever get angry at a man for stating the truth.
-Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, Part 1, Ch. 10

I did laugh watching the credits – yes, I watch & read the credits. All the required union “workers” in the credits. But I did have a great big smile on my face at the end of the credits – the list of Kickstarter donors who gave money so this project would happen!

To all those Kickstarter donors, thank you!
To the producers, directors, actors, thank you!

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To the rest of you – watch all three movies in a row & READ THE BOOK!

The evil of the world is made possible by nothing but the sanction you give it.
-Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, Part 3, Ch. 7

Those who have eyes, let them see! Those who have ears, let them hear!

There are no evil thoughts except one: the refusal to think.
-Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, Part 2, Ch. 2

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