In all my dreaming about being outdoors, for just a tiny bit (not even far, just out will do, for now) I have been having visions of being outdoors. I dreamt of being on a farm the other night, uprooting a gigantic cauliflower from the earth, satisfaction writ large on my face. I’ve been daydreaming of picnicking — recollecting intensely happy memories from my childhood when we’d go off on picnics a lot, without a plan or too much thinking. VC and I have considered driving out of the city, a flask of chai and some sandwiches in tow, just to go out to be amidst trees, take our masks off for a bit.
And then yesterday, I had this very deep ache in my chest, thinking about this afternoon in Paris from nearly two years ago.
Suddenly, this right here, perfectly captures what being outside has come to mean to me right now, in this moment. Open, green, lush, fresh, cool. FREE.
This was a couple of hours we spent on the banks of the Seine, when we picked up wine, by the glass, at a bar whose very purpose seemed to make available wine by the glass for people to drink by the river. We walked in and everyone else got beers, but I asked for a rosé. It was that perfect weather for rosé. A crisp nip in the air, but the sun shining sharply, breeze from time to time — perfect 4 o clock wandering weather basically. I saw the bartender casually chuck a couple of ice cubes in my glass of wine.
I know absolutely nothing about wine. But for some reason I remember thinking I’m pretty sure that breaks some wine rule somewhere, but HOW COOL that he thought nothing of doing it.
Want chilled wine, but the wine isn’t chilled? No problem, here’s some ice.
Wine snobs everywhere might have turned their noses up at me. Rosé — that somehow always feels a touch finer and presents more delicacy than red or white wine — running dilute as the ice that keeps it cool also melts away into it.
But it was perfect.
Flexible. Chill. Improvising on the go.
Going with the flow, not letting warm wine get in the way of a delightful afternoon hang — just what the moment needed, really.
Quite like me, I remember thinking then.
And my God, how strongly that vision came back to me yesterday. That day, that afternoon, sitting by the river drinking my rosé from a non-plastic glass, ice cubes and all, I remember feeling so seen and understood by the moment. For giving me just what I needed.
And I am quite like this. Even more so these days. As I have leaned so much into the side of me that can roll with fewer plans, that’s okay to break some rules, that’s willing to do what’s needed to be happy.
Even if it is put ice cubes in wine.
It thrilled me no end to make that completely obscure, even contrived, connection. For a few moments there, looking at this picture, I lived vicariously. I imagined being outdoors. I saw iridescent greens from the treetops, pearly limpid blues of the river gently lapping by, and me sitting amidst it, wine glass in hand, feet dangling off the edge of the bund, along with literally scores of others doing the same.
Open, green, lush, fresh, cool. FREE.
The whole day dream made me curious about the rules around putting ice in wine, and so I googled it. I didn’t learn a thing about the “rules”, but guess what?
Ice in rosé? IT’S A THING!
La piscine, it’s called. A refreshing glass of rosé, made further refreshing by being poured over ice.
La piscine literally translates to “the swimming pool” — which I think is just the most exquisite description of a drink that was literally like swimming in a pool of freshness. I don’t think I have ever felt so thrilled, or found so much meaning in an alcoholic beverage (or any other beverage, for that matter) in my entire life.
I have to say this reverie soothed the impossibly itchy need to be outdoors quite a bit. But it set of a whole other spiral of missing this afternoon, and being with these peeps.