Is it me or does the world seem a more dismal and drearier place after the excitement of Christmas and the New Year parties? My thoughts of alcohol of any variety are definitely in the grim lavatory just down the corridor at the moment as I write this from the Eurostar travelling from St Pancras to Gare du Nord to the empty flat in one of the most bustling parts of Paris itself. It is strange how the echo inside the flat contrasts with the wonderfully busy road outside and the rumbles of the metro, traffic and general chatter that switches off so easily when the window shuts it out? I am looking forward to the peace and solitude while my hangover eases and my stomach goes from acid rebellion to acceptance of food and maybe a little wine later on.
My aim this year is to write a diary on as much wine as I can, not quite a bottle a day, even my liver cannot possibly take that for the full 365 days of the year, but a log of tastings inspired by Nigel Slater's Kitchen Diaries and with the suggestion of my good friend Werds. Maybe I should keep in the mould and call it my Cellar Diaries (but that would be pretentious if you could see the place I am living in)?
First stop this week is to the barbers for my hair, or lack of it, and a shave. Five days growth means absorbing smells in my beard that would influence my tastebuds (or so they told me at wine school). After that I will dare to go into my off license, Nicolas, for a sample of their wine of the month or suitable alternative.
In the meantime, as I summon up the courage of the first mouthful of wine and keep my stomach from going into spasms of protest, I just wanted to wish all my friends and whoever may see this a very Happy New Year...