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Easter Picnic in Regents Park

Me, my friends, and a couple bottles of wine celebrating Easter in Regents Park

A guest post by Amy Shropshire

In 2006, I sold almost everything I owned, packed all the rest into 3 suitcases, and landed in London, England with £200 and no place to live.  I was there to study for my MA in Marketing, but this wasn’t your typical semester abroad with your college buddies.  I was on my own.  And then something happened.  The university I was attending hosted a new student welcome party, and armed with a glass of white wine in hand, I met my new friends.  Over the next year and a half, these friends became my family.  We shared our fears and secrets, joys and dreams, and more often than not a recurrent theme in our celebrations included sharing a bottle of wine.

This got me thinking.  What role does wine play in our lives?  Is it simply a label, a vintage with body and character?  Or is it something much greater; something that brings people together with a toast and shared conversation?  My vote goes to something greater.  I can’t tell you what label wine we’d drunk.  I’d be hard pressed to recall if it was a red, white or rosé.  But I’ll always remember the friends and family smiling and laughing with me over the clink of toasting wine glasses.

I think of the time Nikki and I tried to open a bottle without a corkscrew (it didn’t work); an amazing Easter picnic in Regent’s Park with friends who made it feel like I wasn’t 3,800 miles away from my family.  I think back to my undergraduate years when Lisa and I used to escape the 20-hour days of the National Student Advertising Competition to de-stress over a bottle of whatever our very helpful (and very attractive) waiter recommended; and I think of last week, when a dear friend of mine in another country told me she wished I could be with her sharing a bottle of wine like we used to when we lived closer.  These memories keep me strong when times get tough and keep me looking forward to the future when again, glass in hand, we will toast to our friendship.

So I posed the question to my Facebook and Twitter friends, “What does wine mean to you?” and here’s a sample of what I heard:

  • Wine means good times with some of my best friends. Girl time is very important to me. You’ll never see a flurry of conversation like you will with my girlfriends and a great bottle of our favorite vino!!!—Bethany
  • Wine is how I relax after a long day. Its great with a bunch of girlfriends!!!—Katherine
  • To me wine is about sharing. Sharing the wine with friends and loved ones obviously, but also about sharing your time and your thoughts with the people in your life.—Rachael
  • Always celebrate what life has to offer day by day, wine has so many meanings, memories, and wine will always be everywhere you go. Life is so short that a special glass or even a few!… will produce so many memories to last a lifetime.—Alexandra
  • A day without wine is like a day without sunshine.—Kent

To me, wine represents the memories of times both good and bad, laughter and tears.  It is the memory of a first date when everything was new and exciting, and of the 100th date when you still toasted “to us.”  It is friends sitting together over a home-cooked meal and promising to be forever friends.  I have been fortunate to have had many of these moments in my life, wonderful friends to share them with, and the knowledge that there are many more to come.  I hope I get to share them all with you as a part of the Murphy-Goode Family.

So now its your turn –  What does wine mean to you?

To vote for Amy go here!  If you are deaf or hard of hearing there is a captioned version available here (you will need to turn on the captioning in the lower right hand corner).   There’s also a blooper version if you need a “Goode” laugh!

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