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 A Jug of Wine 
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Post A Jug of Wine
A Jug of Wine
by: Ronald Senn

Edward FitzGerald first translated the Rubaiyat by Omar Khayyan (1048-1123) from Persian to English in 1859. Over the years, there has been much debate about the accuracy of his translation. The fact remains that the words penned by FitzGerald remain remembered today.

I first heard the following infamous, translated lines in my high school English class: “A Book of Verses underneath the Bough, A Jug of Wine, a loaf of Bread – and Thou.”

Only a few things taught during my high school years remain as vivid to me as those words from the Rubaiyat.

Later, I became a Forester who led a life that was often “underneath the Bough” in one forest after another. Instead of a “Book of Verses,” I carried and read my official USDA Forest Service timber field manual. When in the woods, my “Loaf of Bread” was really a double-decker baloney sandwich. I could not carry “a Jug of Wine” while working so water was the substitute of choice. “Thou” for me at the time was my many co-workers who walked the forest with me. I spent over 30 years living the life that Omar so ably described. It was a good life for me—even though I regretted missing the “Jug of Wine” part.

What about wine? The ever-increasing favorite of many people, including myself, is wine. The choices one has today seem nearly infinite with over 1000 different wine varieties available. Omar touted wine as a key ingredient to enjoyment “beneath the Bough.” Some wines may even have beneficial health effects when taken in moderation. Many of us now agree Omar was on to something.

In Omar’s day, the old fashioned wine cellar or cave stored that era’s favorite wines. The cellars and caves were dark, humid and maintained a relatively constant cool temperature, nearly perfect for wine storage. Today, access to those storage facilities is not readily available to most of us. Fortunately purchasing products to fit anyone’s wine storage and serving needs is now easy in the market place. There are wine coolers that fit small spaces, can be freestanding any where in the home, can be installed beneath your countertop, and can other accommodate beverages as well as wine. There are even wine coolers with thermoelectric technology that are eco-friendly.

Life during Omar’s era is oft romanticized. However, trudging up and down those dark, moss covered wine cellar steps could not have been an easy task. I submit to you that there would have been many serious falls with their associated concussions. Imagine instead if they had been able to fetch a bottle of wine during the 30-second commercial time out while watching the Super Bowl. There are real solutions available today to allow that possibility. The long and short of it is to buy good wine, store it properly, and serve it at the right temperature. Your enjoyment of wine will last a life time. I have a feeling Omar did.

Author: Ronald Senn, VP Ideal Wine Coolers, September 2009

About The Author
Ronald Senn is currently Vice-president of Ideal Wine Coolers. Ron served in the U.S. Navy from 1966-1970. Ron graduated from the University of Arizona with BS and MS Degrees. Ron is retired from the U.S. Forest Service after serving over 30 years.

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Wed Dec 01, 2010 12:38 pm
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