I love road trips. I spent many summers of my youth packed in a Dodge Ram van with my folks and my six siblings, exploring the country and camping when it was time to stop. We put the Thomas Guide to the test. We passed our time singing along to oldies stations, playing "I Spy", and staying alert for out-of-state plates and graphic roadkill. There would be the occasional lull of long stretches and often the lovely, odd quiet of dusk.
My spot was rear bench, center, flanked by two older brothers. Sleeping was tricky, but I developed the curious practice of sitting on the floor facing backward, resting my head on the seat. When awake and alert, the perspective from this bench afforded me something I wouldn't fully appreciate until adulthood: my father's eye in the rearview mirror.
At some point on these drives, there would be an absurd observation, mistaken or mangled song lyrics, a ridiculous radio commercial, or a grotesquely loud fart. We'd predictably go nuts and from my spot I could spy my dad's eye in the mirror, watching the creases deepen with laughter. The impressions left an impression. What struck me most was that after the laughter subsided, when mom was back to her paper and the older boys their books, and some their walkmans and others their game of slugbug... my father's eyes would still be smiling for many moments more, the creases softening at their infinite leisure. A light that wouldn't go out, holding some triumphant, unyielding cheer. A joy reluctant to leave.
TONIGHT at OAKLAND YARD: Thursday Night Flights! German Whites and Italian Reds. 3 Wines, your choice, all joy. Flights $12 from 4-8pm.
SATURDAY FLIGHT: California LOVE from 2-5pm! Bright, zippy TENDU white, a gloriously dry and delightful Trailmarker Wine Co. Rosé and a savory Syrah from SKY Vineyards. Come explore and adventure with us.
SUNDAY FLIGHT: ROSÉ ALL DAY! All French line up. New arrivals too. All dry, delightful, and delicious. Think PINK with us, from 12-6pm. You may be reluctant to leave.
p.s. Happy Father's Day to all the good ones out there, past and present. And to all the big brothers or sisters who step up. To the single moms, the two moms, the two dads, the good neighbors, the sound sponsors, the coaches and counselors, the pastors and rabbis...
To all those who guide our vans.