Last week at this time I was giggling with sheer joy, amazed at the beauty that surrounded me and drunk with what I can only describe as the rock star treatment. And this is before I even opened the first bottle of wine.
Let me bring you up to date.
Actually, I had already been giddy for quite some time before I even arrived.
I think I started the day giddy, right when my alarm went off at 4 a.m. Sure, I felt a little guilty missing the kids’ first day of school, but I was leaving them with my very capable husband and flying off to Oregon for the very first time to be pampered for a night, and then headed to see old friends, meet new ones and try lots of new wines at the Wine Bloggers Conference. How could I not be giddy?
On the two plane rides to Eugene I did not do any work and I did not read anything serious, unless you count me doing my parental duty by reading Catching Fire, the second of the Hunger Games trilogy, to determine if it was acceptable reading for my 11 year old. (Hmmm. Some questionable stuff in there, but oh-so-suspenseful and no, the books are NOT about kids killing kids. It’s much more than just that. And I can’t wait to read book three. But I digress. )
So I land in Eugene and have this massive sense of freedom, blended in with a gorgeous, sunny, breezy and absolutely perfect day.
I claim my bags, start my rental car, roll down the windows, crank up the radio and take off for King Estate and wonder what is in store. I see gorgeous pine trees, impressive mountains and breathe in fresh air. My hair is flipping in the wind and I am not sweating. I am definitely no longer in Houston!
It’s not long at all before I fly by this beautiful sign while singing at the top of my lungs.
I Stop, park, and run back to take the photo you see there.
I try to text it to the King Estate Marketing Director, but the text wouldn’t send. And wouldn’t send. And wouldn’t send.
Oh well. I’ve got more bliss ahead of me, so I drive on and enter the King Estate gates, overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of the hills, the mountains, the vibrant and perfect green vines in beautiful rows…. I stop the car at least three times to take photographs, waving the UPS truck past me and giggling at the scenery around me. I feel free, yet still wish my husband was there to marvel with me.
I pull up to the Visitors Center, park the car and am overwhelmed by this soothing, gorgeous smell typically reserved for spas.
“What is that smell?” I think to myself and wonder how in the world I could be smelling it. From my night in Cinderalla’s Castle, I know Disney pipes in fragrances of fresh cookies and popcorn after the parades to encourage spending, but how in the world could King Estate be pumping in such a strong fragrance in this beautiful, spacious outdoor setting?
I dismiss it and am taken by the glorious scenes all around me.
I practically glide into the building, passing plenty of small groups dining, laughing and enjoying wine at the tables around me, and am introduced to Austin, King Estate’s gracious and friendly Food & Beverage director.
He escorts me to the cottage.
And there I want to pinch myself. No, actually I don’t want to do that because if it was a dream, I knew did not want it to end!
The cottage is nestled in between lush trees, with a pond in the back yard and bushes of purple flowers leaning up against the patio and corner windows with yellow butterflies dancing between the branches. Inside, is is rustic, yet luxurious:
“Really?” I can’t help but say and laugh.
Austin just smiles.
“I really get to stay here?” I repeat. I am in awe.
Austin invites me to enjoy any of the King Estate wines, beers including several local ones, and organic snacks that are in the kitchen
and explains that I must enjoy the fresh eggs and bacon from the on-site charcuterie in the morning. He also points out the fresh bran muffins from the King Estate bakery,
and then asks when I’d like to begin my tour.
He must have thought I was crazy because I had to giggle some more. I was definitely not the cool celeb type. Instead I was amazed. I finally came up with a time to meet Josh, King Estates’s wine educator, up at the Visitors Center.
Austin left me and I snapped more photos of the 2 story 2 bedroom cottage where not one detail was overlooked:
Downstairs bedroom, complete with robes:
Downstairs bath, stocked with lavender toiletries:
and, not that I had any laundry to do, but this place even had a washer and dryer!
Plus if I wanted to fish, I was set up for that, too:
Finally, after getting settled, I poured myself a glass of Pinot Gris and went out to relax on the patio ledge and just sat there taking in the sun, the butterflies, the greenery around me and the Pinot Gris.
I may not know what it is like to be a rock star, but I sure know what it is like to be pampered by King Estate. And I know I like that. A LOT!
After awhile I went back inside and tore into the chips and (organic) salsa and tried to do a bit of writing, but was just too excited to get serious. Instead I cranked up the volume on the TV (Did I mention the cottage has satellite television? And a great collection of jazz CD’s too.) and danced around to Beautiful Day by U2. (Isn’t that ironic that that particular song came on? But that is just how my day was.) I hope no one saw me dancing around like a crazy woman. But, if they did, oh well. The moment was just perfect.
Yes, I was overwhelmed by the hospitality of King Estate. And that was just the beginning…
There’s more to come about what I experienced on my tour and King Estate’s hospitality to the community. They don’t just reserve it for little bloggers like me or even just for their customers…
(and, yes, I’ll explain more about that fabulous fragrance I was telling you about when I arrived.)