It was a rainy Saturday afternoon. The Toddler was running circles around the living room. The in-laws were looking bored. And I? Just needed to get out of the house.
So we went to the winery. Oliver Winery, for anyone wondering.
For most, the highlight of a winery trip would be the wine. Or, more precisely, the free wine tastings.
But while the wine was indeed yummy (except for the mead. That was barfola), the real attraction for our family lay outside. At the bottom of a steep hill. Unprotected from the cold rain falling from the sky.
The pond at Oliver Winery is home to many hundreds (or so it seems) of brightly colored Koi. Giant Koi. Koi that will gladly get about six inches from your fingers if you feed them the magical pellets that pour out from a brown box for the bargain basement price of 25 cents.
So Tori, of course, blanketed the water’s murky surface with pellets. In fact, we were pretty sure the fish would never be able to eat them all. But they did. They came and they ate, and their mouths gaped open in mock grins as they gulped them down.
And Tori? Was delighted. In fact, those fish teased the first smile we’d seen out of her in hours. Even better, they held her attention for more than 20 minutes (a lifetime in toddler time).
Which was 20 minutes free of screaming. Free of tantrums. Free of frustrated looks from the grandparents.
In other words, they were magic. I could use a little more of that in my life.