It occurs to me that a casual reader of this blog, otherwise unacquainted with me, might reasonably deduce that I am an alcoholic, given the preponderance of wineries at which I make safe harbor on these trips. I assure you, however, that this is not the case — my method, rather, is to consult the Rand-McNally Road Atlas for a general route on a given day, then query Siri (of iPhone fame) for locales within three hundred miles of my current position (since six hours is all I want to drive in one day). I then input my location and my desired destination into the Harvest Hosts app, which shows me all the Hosts adjacent to my route. The app lets me email or phone potential hosts and request a stay; I have been most fortunate that every request on this trip has been honored. It just so happens on this trip that the majority of the hosts available (with the exception of Glen Erin Golf Club) have been wineries. This particular leg of the trip suffers from a dearth of Hosts, and so it is that I find myself a considerable distance away from I-90 tonight at yet another (albeit outstanding) winery. And so, once again, I bought a bottle to give as a gift.
Both the Little Guy and the CVI were pounded by thunderstorms last night, which resolved themselves into a slow, steady rain for the trip north today along the eastern shore of Lake Erie and around Buffalo, NY. Spring Lake Winery is located northeast of Buffalo in an attractive small city named Lockport, although I would swear it was easily half an hour from the time I left I-90 to my arrival at the winery, due to the mind-numbing gauntlet of red lights strategically placed along the access highway into the city.
The hurdles, however, were worth the effort, for Spring Lake Winery is an outstanding Harvest Host spot to which I would readily return. This is a gorgeous facility, new-looking and impeccably maintained, right on the shore of a most attractive pond.
Attached to the left side of the winery is a lovely outdoor seating area overlooking Spring Lake, where a variety of reasonably-priced luncheon menu items are served (along with, of course, their house wines).
The pond itself is lovely:
I had my choice of several parking spots and chose the easiest-looking one, in the back parking lot, giving me a view of the vineyard.
The winery even offered me the use of their wi-fi network! Really, this is an outstanding Harvest Host and, were it not for its out-of-the-way location relative to I-90, would be a place I would return to again and again.
Daughter LJ called me this evening to report that a tornado had struck little Layla’s pre-school building this afternoon and torn the roof off it. Fortunately, no one was injured, but Layla was apparently traumatized by it, having lived through a similar event at home in 2020 wherein she spent the night sleeping in a laundry basket in the bathtub; apparently she was inconsolable today and, of course, will be out of school (daycare) for the foreseeable future. I had the opportunity to visit Layla’s school during my visit last week; how sad that this charming and effective learning center will be out of service indefinitely, and its very capable teachers unemployed. Clearly, security is an illusion; and life is absolutely what happens while we are making other plans.
Well….tomorrow, I’m on to Albany and another overnight stop at Arrowhead to dump the tanks. Then my epic midwestern journey will be over!