Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Revelations At The Liquor Store

I recently found a recipe for an old fashioned hot toddy. My grandparents used to give those to me when I was a small child. It's the best thing in the world for a cold or sore throat or even flu symptoms. I don't know why it has taken me so many years to resort to their use again? Probably because I have this aversion to going into the liquor store to buy the whiskey to make them with. But, I need a small amount of rum to make rum balls for Christmas, so I thought maybe I would go ahead and purchase a small bottle of whiskey for the toddies. Well, that seemed like a good idea, but then of course you have to go to the liquor store to do this.

Never say that good husband's aren't useful in just about any situation! Dear hubby had the answer! Well, of course, I should go to the liquor store and I want to buy 'Jack in the black'. Ooooookay. Now, just what is 'Jack in the black' anyway? Turns out it's Jack Daniels whiskey in the black label. Simple enough. So, I head out to the liquor store (I've NEVER been in a liquor store before) to make my little purchase of a small bottle of 'Jack in the black' and a small amount of rum. I was not prepared for what I was about to experience!

I walk in the door and there's this little store chock full of differing sizes and shapes of bottles. The labels are some very simple and some very elaborate. There are things I've heard about....vermouth, brandy, champagne, wine, whiskey, bourbon, the list goes on. There are brands I've heard of.........Jim Beam, Captain Morgan, and so many more. However, the most shocking thing for me was the bottles themselves. They were gorgeous! I mean, I don't drink, but I would buy some of this stuff just to have their decanters! Oh and that's what they were, decanters. Not just simple bottles, decanters.

I browsed through the isles looking at the beautiful decanters and dreaming about what I could do with them in my home. And, do you know what, I never once felt as though the Lord was going to like strike me down for being in the store! I guess I was surprised, because that's what I had always thought I would feel. Surprisingly, I enjoyed the little excursion. Some very nice young man was standing in the whiskey isle while I perused the available offerings. He offered his advice. He says Gentleman Jack whiskey is a very smooth whiskey. Hummmmmmmmm, who would've guessed?!

Eventually, I selected the smallest bottle of 'Jack in the black' I could find and went on the search for my even smaller bottle of rum. I found some small bottles, but much larger than I needed. I only needed 3 tablespoons for my rum balls. I'm walking around checking every nook and cranny to see what I can find and then I spot them. Right there setting on the counter near the cash registers are containers of the small 'airline' bottles of whiskey, rum, bourbon, wine, just about anything you could ask for. So, not knowing how much they contained, I decided that surely two of these little bottles contained 3 tablespoons. I picked up two of the very small bottles of rum and was ready to pay for my little stash.

I walked to the counter and placed my bottles there. The very pleasant young man at the register proceeded to enter my purchases and bag them in a plain brown bag. I thought, I've never walked out of a store with a plain brown bag of whiskey and rum. What will I do if I get stopped by a policeman on the way home? I paid the young man and was ready to head out the door, still wondering what I was going to do about this alcohol and driving home. As I was walking away, the very nice young man said "Thank you ma'am. And, you have a Merry Christmas and a blessed day".

What? Did he say '....have a blessed day...'? That's not what you're supposed to hear in a liquor store, is it?! NO! I had always been taught that only drunks and sinners entered liquor stores, much less walked out with their little plain brown bags. What's going on here? Do you mean to tell me people work in these places who actually know what it is to have a blessed day? WOW! How did I miss this all of my judgmental life?! Have I had my head in the sand? Now I've completely forgotten about my little bag and driving.

I place my bag in the trunk (surely if it's in the trunk and clearly unopened I will be safe, no?). I get into my car and head out of the parking lot. I have a lot on my mind. There's a lot to think about here. Is this yet another of those areas where I have depended on traditions taught to me rather than the leadership of the Holy Spirit to guide my thoughts? Have I been so wrong all these years? How have I managed to reach the age of 50 years without discovering this?

I'm thankful the Holy Spirit still guides me, when I let Him. I just wish I could be more open to Him and less wrapped in my own ideas and opinions. Then again, that is up to me, isn't it? I'm the one who has to decide to submit even my thoughts to the Holy Spirit. Not only my thoughts, but my opinions as well. Lord, please forgive me for being judgmental of others and for not allowing Your Holy Spirit to guide my thoughts and opinions. Please help me never to be guilty of that again.

I will return to the liquor store, not because I like to drink, but because there are legitimate reasons to visit at times. It's no worse to buy whiskey for a toddy than to buy Nyquil. My gastroenterologist has tried for many years to get me to drink a glass of wine each night to help my digestive problems. I never would because I was judgmental. I will not be guilty of that again. And, I will try some wine to see if it will help my tummy. Why should I be more ashamed of a glass of wine than I would be of all the drugs my doctor prescribes for me? There's absolutely no reason other than ignorance. I refuse to live in ignorance when the Lord has shone a light on it and opened my eyes.


The Raggedy Girl said...

You never cease to amaze me with your blogs.

1Tim. 5:23
Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.

Also go to my blog and get rum ball recipe as it uses 1/3 cups. My hubby loves them.
Merry Christmas Sweetie
from Roberta Anne

bj said...

I do believe, of all the postings I've read on all these blogs, this one of yours is the BEST. I laughed a little, cried a little, shook my head up and down when you mentioned judging things we don't really understand...and laughed out loud, just picturing you browsing thru that liquor store, admiring the bottles.
Do you know that rum or any other liquor will stay good forever in your freezer.? You can use that same rum for NEXT years rum balls...and, oh, aren't they so good. My mom could make the BEST ones, ever. After being in a tin container for a couple of weeks, they REALLY got good!! tee hee....
Oh, and wine....a glass at night will do wonders for all kinds of things...plus, BLACKBERRY wine is delicious..just a glass with your dinner is PERFECT.
I love your blog, girlfriend.

Felisol said...

Dear Diane,
I came here to find the Terry blogs,- and I will, but you are such a good righter, it's hard to skip any of your posts.
I think your world very much resembles to mine,--forty years ago.
It- s so refreshing to read how you step by step are brought into "reality" by using common sense and by being the bravest and most honorable person I've ever met.

You know what they say in some churches hereabouts? Jesus made water into wine as his first miracle. "Yes, we know it, but we don't like it."

It's true, and it's our Savior they are talking about.

Dear Diane, I hope you never stop writing, or for that matter, thinking.