I love Alaska Airlines. For a measly forty bucks more we were able to travel in style to Napa first class. Padded leather chairs and free booze turned out to be the perfect start. On the plane Danna earned a flashy new nickname thanks to the nice old man sitting to our right, who was convinced that we were pro bowlers and that Danna’s name was Tanya Redi-Mix. I can’t wait to get old so I can pull stuff like that out of my butt. We arrived in Napa unscathed and bowling a 210 average.
Napa is a pretentious place. The funny thing is that it reminds me a lot of Vegas, only everyone in Napa thinks they’re really stylish. Like most of California, it’s kind of a dump; lots of litter on the roadways, streets torn up everywhere, and sprawl as far as the eye can see. There is an over-abundance of cheesy old men wearing gold chains and driving convertible Mercedes. But this isn’t really a story about Napa. It’s a story about driving around and getting completely out of our heads.
Eric spared no expense (which he of course passed onto us) when purchasing the limo: big, white, and seats fourteen people. Like most limos it contains many high-school-centric stimuli like a mirror on the ceiling that lights up with fiber optics, and party lights running all around the interior.
Our driver’s name was Jim, and he begrudgingly accepted our nickname of “Jimbo”. Jimbo showed us all the amenities of the limo, like the two bottles of champagne. Good thing I skipped breakfast. By the time we reached our first winery we had downed one of the bottles. Because we were such a big party we were generally given private tastings in each wineries’ tasting room. We ogled the many wine barrels with glee, making fools of ourselves by putting our mouths under the spouts. Everyone was impressed.
Our public displays of affection for wine continued for several more wineries, and culminated at the Robert Mondavi winery. This is a beautiful place for the rich. Very rich, evidently, if you wanted to actually taste their wine. We went for the “Pa made it in the outhouse” introductory taste for $10.00. We were robbed. They hid the top of the bottles, but I’m quite sure these wines had screw caps. The better Mondavi wines went for quite a bit more per taste, and we didn’t want to spring for it. Instead, we hung around the $10.00 taste booth and climbed on the sculptures, again impressing the vinters.
We came home with no wine. That’s right, no wine. Remember, we flew, and couldn’t bring cases of wine on as baggage. Besides, Napa is home of Big Wine. Big Wine can be found in Albertsons, Safeway and many other stores, so we didn’t feel a need to stock up. We did give our livers a bit of a workout, however, which was the point of the trip, after all.