##Photo by Josh Chang/Foundry 503

Take Time to Stop and (Drink) the Rosés

A Day in Wine Country is Good for your Health

By Michele Francisco, OWP Editor

I was born in summer, which might explain why this season is my favorite. Watching puffy white clouds drift across the sky, listening to birds sing their songs, feeling the sun’s warmth, smelling the heady aroma of blooming flowers– I adore it all. And, what an ideal time to visit wine country.

Winery patios and lawns are inviting spaces to slow down and appreciate the surrounding nature. Follow raptors as they soar over the grapevines while butterflies and bees flit among the flowers. You might encounter cats, chickens and, likely, dogs. Feel your heart rate slowing. Take a breath, relax and savor each sip in your glass.

Study after study has proven being in nature improves physical, psychological and social well-being. Natural settings ground us– it’s no surprise how levels of anxiety, depression and high blood pressure lessen. Could this be why so many people fall in love with wine? Of course, they admire it but also the deeper connection it provides with Mother Nature. The slower pace of life.

While maintaining vineyards requires effort, many winegrowers confess they can’t imagine doing anything else. Working among the rows of grapevines– literally tending the fruits of their labor– is tremendously rewarding. Many of us can only dream of watching birds soar overhead while we work. Spending an afternoon at a winery delivers a dose of those healthful gains, minus the sweat.

In a unique way, wine connects us directly to the natural world. I can’t think of a better excuse… no, reason, to plan a day in wine country. Can you?

Michele Francisco spent her childhood reading and writing, eventually graduating from UCLA with an English degree.
She attended graphic design school and began a career in design and marketing. After moving to Oregon in 2010, Michele studied wine at Chemeketa Community College and began Winerabble, a Northwest-focused wine blog. She has been a cheerleader for Oregon wine since her arrival.

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