October 21, 2020
Dear St. Paul’s Family,
During our walk amongst the vines in Provence, we learned much about French wine and what makes it distinctive from wine produced in the U.S. Wine produced in the U.S. is created so that every single bottle of the same variety (for example Ravenswood Old Vine Zinfandel Lodi) will taste the same, year in and year out, whether you purchase it in Walnut Creek, CA, or Woodstock, VA. The same can be said for Coke. We expect a Coke to taste like a Coke no matter where we purchase it. Like wine, it is produced to provide consistency of taste so that consumers know exactly what they are getting. There is something to be said for consistency.
In France, we learned about terroir (pronounced ter-wahr). Terroir is the French term for the environmental conditions, especially soil and climate, in which grapes are grown and that give a wine its unique flavor and aroma. Not only does the variety of grape influence the flavor, but so do such factors a moisture, soil conditions, altitude and the age of the vine. Wines from the oldest vines in the rockiest soil, at high altitudes, produce the best wine. Imagine that! I came away feeling a lot better about aging.
In France, each bottle of wine is a unique experience, like no other that came before or is yet to follow. It is something to be celebrated, but not something to hold onto. There is a lesson there for us as we long for things to get back to normal.
What kind of fruit will the terroir of COVID19 produce? Hardiness, resilience, patience, grace, faith, hope, love, a profoundly new and different view of what really matters, a deeply rich varietal? Only God knows.
God is enough for today ~ Anne