When City Magazine asked me to write a column for The Good Life, it wasn’t mentioned that I would be following Keith Enloe’s column in the last issue. That’s like asking an amateur musician to play following The Beatles.
If you haven’t read Keith’s article, please do before you read this. He has a lot of comments on what some people may call “The Good Life,” and to those I would just add: You can find the good life with a glass of good wine, with a good cigar, or with a relaxing ride in a great car. I’ll give you some examples.
For many, the holiday season is a time of reflection. As another year passes, we take time to ask: Are we satisfied with where we are? Are we taking time to appreciate the good things in our lives? What are some of the fondest memories we have enjoyed in the past? And what are we looking forward to in the future?
For me, a good cigar, enjoyed either alone or with other like-minded friends, is a good way to reflect. For some, a cigar is relaxing. It gives you peace. You don’t puff it like hell, as you would with a cigarette or vaping device.
You savor it, enjoy it, and think or talk. In Keith’s column he reflected that sitting around a fire pit with friends represented one of his ideas of the good life. I’d add a cigar!
If you’ve never bought a cigar, know that some have heavy flavor and some have lighter flavor. In general, the lighter wrappers carry a lighter taste. Don’t buy a box. Buy one at a time until you find what you like. I also suggest starting with a well-known brand — Rocky Patel is my go-to — or just ask someone who knows!
Keith’s reminiscences of closing a good book and having a delicious meal also bring to mind a really nice glass of wine. That would be a California cabernet for me, but whatever you prefer is your best bet. A good wine is to be savored, consumed slowly (hopefully with friends), and enjoyed to the fullest.
“Are we taking time to appreciate the good things in our lives?”Jim Logan
New to wine? Start with a lighter tasting wine like a white or rosé. As your taste matures, you’ll probably begin to appreciate bolder reds. Buy single bottles or go to a wine tasting when wine bars like BarVino have them. Also, drink your friends’ wine when you can. It’s cheaper.
For some, a car is just how you get from point A to point B. For others, getting there is half the fun — or more than half, in some cases.
I’ve been a “car guy” since I got my first ride . . . which I still have. It’s a 1961 MGA I got upon graduating from high school. How many people do you know who have had the same car for 55 years? (For any young people reading this, an MGA is a British sports car made from 1955 to 1962.)
City Magazine asked me to write about cars, cigars, and fine wine. If “high-end stereo equipment” was added, that would have about covered all my hobbies. My stereo system has tubes powering it, and a set of Acoustat 3 speakers, the kind Steve Jobs had. Also, I play “records” on it . . . those are big round things with a hole in the middle, for you Spotify and Pandora kids.
During this holiday season, get together with friends. Enjoy some good food, fine wine if you like, and maybe a good cigar. Also reflect and think about what’s important in your life.
If you’re a car person, drive a Delorean or Corvette to your Christmas dinner. I will. (From that last sentence, you may have surmised that I have a Delorean. I enjoy taking people for rides in it, even though it doesn’t go “back to the future.” For some reason, I didn’t get that option.)
Whatever hobbies you enjoy, take the time to enjoy them. Share them with your friends. Appreciate what you have. Savor the past — I don’t live in the past, but I visit it often. Make plans to do more of the important things in life during and after the holiday season.
Call that friend or family member (you can even send them an email) who you haven’t seen in quite a while. Tell the people in your life that you appreciate and love them. And to all of you . . . Happy Holidays, and enjoy the good life!