CalFire helicopters are now almost as thick as CHP and Shasta Regional Medical choppers in the local skies, a sure sign that fire season has officially begun. In my opinion, for what it's worth, CalFire has right-of-way at present; marijuana grows and car crashes (CHP and Shasta Regional)) are problems, true enough, as are stabbings, gunshot wounds, heart attacks and strokes (again, Shasta Regional) but given the fact that the forests are crackling-brown dry and there isn't any water to fight them with, I put the fire threat at the top of the list at present. Therefore, everyone needs to stop whining, pay their CalFire tax assessment, and stay out of the way when they're trying to work.
The drought has become a part of our culture here in California, as is proper, I suppose. All of a sudden everyone's a conservationist (of water, at least), including most of those who were calling real conservationists tree-huggers, or worse, just last year, before the ugly truth of our predicament became so evident that even morons and dumb-asses couldn't cry wolf with a straight face any longer.
I'm pleased to see that most, if not all, of my brethren in the golf management industry are doing their parts. A number of us saw this day coming years ago, even before the advent of this particular drought, and began trying to communicate to our boards and committees the need to begin planning and preparing for the ray when the West's water problems would finally come home to roost. Some listened, but many didn't, and those are the courses and clubs scrambling for their lives today. Oh, well.
Speaking of golf, I'm od'ing for the next few days on coverage of the US Senior Open, being held at Del Paso Country Club, in Sacramento, where I spent a major part of my career, and where we were the management team and series of boards responsible for the total reconstruction of the golf course and renovation of the clubhouse. The project consumed about four years of my life and almost $10 million of the club's money, but saved it from decline and irrelevance, as can clearly be seen from its full membership and financial well-being (at least I assume so) in a miserable climate for the industry in general. I haven't been to the club in several years, but Fox's tv coverage is making it very clear that the golf course has matured beautifully and appears to be superbly conditioned, thanks in large part to the dedication and hard work of Superintendent Mark McKinney. I'm proud of you, Mark, and your crew; just keep doing what you're doing, and congratulations on the Open. Well done.Congratulations, too, to all those past club presidents and board members who had the courage to work with those few of us, meaning staff, architect Kyle Phillips, and the early half-dozen or so Green Committee members who saw the vision, to spend the hundreds of hours required to develop the concept, prepare the presentation, and then persuade the general membership to pony up the funds to make it all happen. Congratulations all!!! It was very difficult, and sometimes unpleasantly contentious, as all politics tend to be, but it had to be done, and so it was. And now DP is again in the national spotlight as it approaches its centennial year; a long, strange trip, indeed.
To close for the day, a heads-up to all the sauvignon blanc lovers who read this letter: I have again been reminded (by selfishly enjoying a bottle all by myself over the course of this afternoon) how consistently fine Honig's wine is, as it ever was and will ever be, I suppose. This most recent vintage of the Napa Valley sb is absolutely superb, and perfectly true to the house style. Color is brilliant green-gold, with a highly perfumed citrusy-mown grassy nose that continues to blossom and expand for a while after opening. On the palate, the usual fruit basket, juicy and fresh, with lots more of the citrus/pineapple/vanilla notes on the palate and in the long, lingering finish. It's as good as any sb I've had in the past 10 years, and far better than most. Do yourselves and your members/customers a big favor and buy it for you summer/fall menus; your staff will love you, too, because they'll be able to sell it without fear in their hearts.
Good night; more very soon.