Humble Pursuit

This post is intentionally for my apologies. I built my website in May with grand ideas and I planned on continuing it throughout my year that I lived in Mexico (sounds exciting, right?). I had blog posts planned, pitches laid out, and restaurants, food, spirits, and wine I was ready to write about. I was excited about it. Then life comes around and tells you it has other plans.

I was trying my best to settle into my life in Oaxaca City but no one explains to you that expat life can be pretty lonely. I felt lonely. I dwelled on how much I was proud of but also of what I wasn’t doing. I was tough on myself. I brought on a big adjustment and didn’t allow myself the time and space to heal and become my own.

Before I could even think of being nice to myself, I got a phone call from my parents saying my mom had one big, nasty headache, and since then had been getting worse. She went in and out of doctors for tests on Lyme Disease and everything else under the sun. Finally, a weekend approached where I thought Cisco and I could see a movie, maybe catch a Guerreros game, really enter into this culture, when I called my dad to find out that my mom was in the ER. She had a ruptured brain aneurysm. She needed surgery on Monday. My dad could barely get the words out and would have to give the phone to my mother to explain to me what was wrong with her while she sat in a hospital bed hoping her injury wouldn’t cause more damage.

I couldn’t sleep. I was up at six in the morning watching that apocalyptic James Franco movie just to possibly get my mind off of real life. I called my brother to assess how serious the situation was. It became evident that I needed to fly home. Francisco searched for a flight. I put a suitcase together in my scattered state (which I later found out ended up being fifteen pairs of pants and one shirt, but I digress). I flew to NJ on a whim one day in June. It’s now almost November and I haven’t been back. I’m 31, about to be married, and live at home with my parents.

But since then, I’ve volunteered at TexSom, been a speaker at BevCon in Charleston, started an internship at Wine & Spirits magazine, and have professionally started writing.

I’ve learned slowly through all of these events that the people I’ve surrounded myself these past ten years with truly know the art of hospitality. I’ve felt welcomed and have learned that the art of wine is universal, that the community has endless support and love to give.

The profession itself speaks to the creative, the analytic, and the hospitalian mind and somehow, I’ve learned that because of this, it is a profession with endless opportunity and endless voice. It is a profession where the knowledge never ends. There’s only becoming better. I’ve watched hurricanes and earthquakes hit old hometowns, shootings happen down the street of my hotel on vacation, and vans take down pedestrians in the place I was standing just an hour before. We’ve watched shooters take down Las Vegas and fires in California. There’s so much out there in the world today that has touched on the industry I’ve come to love so dearly and there is so much more we can talk about. In a real way.

We also need to talk about the things that give us joy in such a heartbreaking reality. I will do my best to breach both but they are both my goals. To face the unthinkable and take joy in the small pleasures. Here goes my humble pursuit.