Saturday, January 11, 2014


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A doctor's appointment in Stockton with a cardiologist took five hours with driving time. As my leaving date gets closer, time seems to shrink. The whole week is devoted to medical necessities before I leave so my blog will be sporadic in the days ahead. The bright spot in yesterday was a birthday dinner with friends. Stuart Mast, his wife Delores Quyle, Margot Osborn and Pamela Quyle, friends I missed my last two visits home.
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Margot's birthday was January 1st. She is known through out wine country as a wine expert, mistress, extraordinaire. She has that same cache when she visits Sonoma, Napa wine country and everybody loves her.
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Stuart and Delores are owners of Bryce Station Winery. They grow and bottle their own estate grapes.  Bryce Station is a young Winery. I'm not sure of the years, maybe  seven or eight, ten? Their wines are wonderful for such young grapes.  I've known them for a long time and didn't think about who makes the wine?  As I was sipping and commenting on how good the wine,  Pamela said, "Of course, Stuart and Delores make their own wines. They sell out quickly." I take them for granted. I always expect the best because this family is talented in so many ways. Delores and Pamela both paint and pot. Art is in the blood. Stuart's, too.
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On the opposite side of the table Marlene and Dick Bradford and  Heidi and Malcom. Heidi was also celebrating a January birthday. It was fun to try out the newest restaurant in town, Tortuga, billing itself as serving  Mediterranean specialties.
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Marlene sculpts and pots and teaches classes at Quyle Kiln. Her work  adds a different spectrum of clay products at Quyle. She does figures and hands on sculpture that Pamela never attempts,  she readily admits. There is always something new and interesting going on at Quyle, either a wine event with food and music. Always potting and art shows. Wine and art, what a wonderful life. All they need is a bakery and cheese making to have what the poets insist is the best things in life. Well, along with love and friendship.
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Heidi was the other January birthday. I believe I met her once before. We were both unsure. She lives part-time U.S. and part-time Germany. She is allergic to cats but inherited one from a neighbor who moved and simply abandoned the cat. She is being very thoroughly trained by this cat and isn't quite aware of it yet as she seeks to comfort its every need. Oh, my! Such fun. The local cupcakes for desert complete with candles? Wonderful.
It was a lovely dinner with lovely people, and when you bring good wine to the table? It is a celebration.

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