So now we come to the events of the last year or so and what drove me to tackle this very big thing in my life.

As many of my regular readers know, my mother – age 92 – has had health issues resulting from a fall that occurred in April of 2012.

During the touch-and-go times of moving from hospital to care center to rehab facility to hospital, there was a lot of time of doing not much of anything except for worrying. And reading.

When the day job changed my division under the umbrella of a new department and the job I loved suddenly turned into the job that put my blood pressure into overdrive, I knew that I had to make some hard decisions and changes in my life. “Misery” is not an inherent part of my DNA.

So how are these two events related?

Mom had joked for years and then reiterated to me when she regained full consciousness – “If I’d known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.”

Nearly 30 years since retiring, she mostly regrets not having anything to do that she loved during that big space of time. Yes, she loves to read, but as she wryly quipped, “that’s about all I can do now. I could have been doing something else.”

The change of my feelings toward the day job and the realization that I needed to fill my life with what I loved drove me to make the decision that it was time to stop simply cohabitating with my love of wine. It really was time for the piece(s) of paper.

“Oh!” said a friend of mine with whom I’d shared my decision, “you’re going to become a sommelier!”

Well, maybe. It’s on the list.

This is where my OCD kicks in. It’s what I call my “While I’m At It” plan.

Yes, I’m at the College of Southern Nevada now, but even with midterms and finals looming, that’s just the beginning.

After a semester of wine education through the Food and Beverage program, I will be immediately studying for my Certified Specialist of Wine and and Certified Wine Educator designations. Between those two – while I’m at it – I will be attempting to attain the WSET Level 2 certification as well. And, by the way, I earned my mixologist certification earlier this year. And while I’m at it, I may attempt to get my Certified Beer Server leading to Certified Cicerone certification, too. Master of Whiskey? Master Sommelier? Who knows. While I’m at it…

Obsessed? OCD? Nuts? Okay, I can handle it. Besides, you still don’t know the half of it.

Because I’m already knowledgeable about wine, I will be happy with no less than an A grade in this class. Yes there are minimum “passing” scores for each of the certification tests, but I’m all about getting scores in the 90s. Or above.

The primary reason I’m doing this is because of credibility. People like initials after the person’s name upon whom they depend for education and information. “Well, I’ve read a lot” just doesn’t cut it.

The other reason is to organize everything that I do know. This has me learning what I know and what I don’t know, and what I didn’t know I didn’t know. And yes, I do know a lot. But it’s obvious to me that I need to know more. Lots more. It’s pretty humbling.

Coming Soon: Part Three – Kissing Frogs

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