Personal, Philosophy

How We See Things

The ways in which people interpret the world have always amazed and intrigued me. How two people can look at the same situation, be armed with the same knowledge about it, and yet still come out with different conclusions (aka ‘politics’). How two people can have a very similar experience and yet react in wildly different ways. How something that can floor one person won’t bother another.

But even more subtly: how the individual ways in which we think about the world – our personal hermeneutics – help us to see things through a unique lens.

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Books

Weekly Reading List #2 – Wine, Weather And Whodunnits

I read quite a lot of books last week, but several of them were very short. Most of them were novels – I seem to be on a fiction drive at the moment.

There were a few that were disappointing, which was a shame, and one or two surprises. So without further ado, here are this week’s reviews.

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Books, Miscellaneous

Some thoughts on wine, from a favourite author

Joanne Harris, in Five Quarters of the Orange:

“Drunkenness, she told us… is a sin against the fruit, the tree, the wine itself.

The thought stayed with me.

Wine, distilled and nurtured from bud into fruit, and then through all the processes that make it what it is, deserves better than to be guzzled by some sot with a headful of nonsense. It deserves reverence, joy, gentleness.”

wine

Sometimes I recite this to myself when I wake up with a hangover ­čśë

Personal

A Year In Recap: 2015

I’ve done my travel round-up and my books round-up, but here’s a recap of the highlights and lowlights of 2015 overall.

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Conversations With My Mother

Room Temperature

My mother and I, sequestered away in a house in the Scottish hills, a roaring fire in front of us complementing the howling wind outside. A melted camembert sits on the floor between us, waiting to be devoured, and I have just uncorked a bottle of wine. The glug-glug-glug as it reaches the glasses, one of the most promising sounds in the world, makes us both smile.

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Miscellaneous

Wine Review: Apothic Red

Of course, I must start this post with a disclaimer. When I say ‘wine review’, this will not be some kind of intelligent comment on notes of elderberry and an underlying velvety structure. I am no connoisseur. But I have drunk a fair amount of wine over the past twenty-five years, and this is my current favourite.

homebottle

I found it nestling in the top left-hand corner of one of the shelves in my local off license. I picked it up because of the name. ‘Apothic’. Rhymes with ‘gothic’. Sounds sort of old and dusty. And everyone knows that old, dusty wines are the best wines. Plus, the bottle is pretty. Can’t go wrong with red curlicues.

chrome 27/12/2013 , 22:30:06 Apothic - The Wine - Google Chrome

The bottle describes it as “Winemaker’s blend… a masterful blend of wines including zinfandel, merlot, syrah, and cabernet sauvignon”, which I must admit immediately brought this scene to mind:

Naturally the wine was nothing like the wine in this scene. Not that I’d know, never having made wine from vanilla ice cream and bits of twig from my garden. I did make a particularly terrible bottle of wine in Chemistry class once at school though. On the last day of term the teacher let us take it all home, and my friends and I went to the field behind the sports hall and got wasted on absolutely terrible wine.

But I digress.

This wine is excellent. And I’ve just been on their website and discovered that you can get all sorts of exciting things from there, too:

APT_StemlessGlass

“Shroud your wine in mystery with this black Apothic stemless glass.” IT’S LIKE THEY KNOW ME.

Spice Tin Candle

Who doesn’t love a spice tin candle?

I’m lucky, because my local shop sells it, but if yours doesn’t, you can buy it from their website.