Being a Wino in a Dry Area

I’m from an awesome part of Western Oregon. I grew up in the Willamette Valley in a special place called Yamhill County. When I was a kid, I rode bus four up into the hills between Dayton and Dundee so the bus could drop off the rich kids from out in the boonies. I saw the vineyards but since my parents weren’t wine drinkers back then, I never really put together that those farms were where wine was born.

Only recently did I become a wine drinker. I say it’s the hours spent bottling wine out of the back of a truck this summer, but I had started to like wine long before that. It’s just nice. It’s not like the gross Ukrainian vodka I consumed during my first two years in the Peace Corps. Wine at least has class.

Where I’m currently living in Nampa, Idaho isn’t a place that’s too big on the wine biz. Or maybe I just notice so many churches and recall my dry college experience on the Nazarene college campus in town. Whatever it is, I feel like a rainbow trout living in a household aquarium. It’s not a comfortable feeling. Though I love my new Weight Watchers group here in Nampa, only one person will openly admit to drinking any alcohol. The rest joke that they heard about it from a friend or completely shun the idea of consuming point heavy calories in liquid “devil” form. That’s not entirely fair, but I still notice that people aren’t into drinking the wine.

I’ve started to plan my escape back to Western Oregon. I’d love to be a blogger there or a cashier at Macy’s, anything to get me back to those luscious grapes and the people who appreciate a good glass of wine.


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