2011 01 19
Vero Beach, FL
To smoke a good cigar you need to start with George and Georgia. At least that's how it seems to us.
Quartermastering three months of stores bought in anticipation of our imminent departure for the Abacos took half again more time than did buying them. Two dinghy trips to shore were required just to take care of the packaging waste - criminal really.
Fortunately we had only just begun inventorying the mountain of cans and packages that threatened to swamp our boat when the phone rang. George and Georgia from Agapi were on the line suggesting dinner at their condo. Well, that was a ten second phone call.
Georgia is a first rate cook and laid on a table of immense platters of chicken and corn and peas and salad and fresh bread. It was really good food. Food which Georgia's husband George, who would be a fine curmudgeon if he could just stop being kind and reasonable, immediately "tweaked" to suit his own tastes, adding mozzarella and tomato paste to already fine chicken cutlets.
Dinner progressed at a properly languid pace and we were all apparently enjoying each others' company.
Recalling a conversation we had with George and Georgia before Christmas the BC and I brought with us two decent Cuban cigars (which I will deny were Cuban if the FBI reads this) on the off chance George would join me in some overwhelmingly civilized after dinner behaviour.
Damn decent of old George to humour me. Brown leaf had barely touched table cloth when George was up, chairs and table were transferred to the condo's verandah and new glasses of wine were poured.
George knows how to smoke a cigar. He boosted his wife's barbecue lighter as a fire starter. Getting comfortable in his dining table chair he bit a proper sized chunk off the correct end, spit it out and fired up the cheroot. As a glorious cloud of aromatic smoke enveloped George, he sat back wriggling himself into a comfortable position, smiled a cheshire cat grin and sighed.
The balance of the evening went just that way - filled with the aromatic smoke of two good cigars and a conversation redolent with luxurious comfortable silences and random outbursts of oratorical energy that signal you are in an excellent conversation with a man satisfied with his accomplishment.
My kind of cigar smoker.
An eternity later, the fog lifted and we returned to the animated discussion being conducted by our irrepressible wives in the main room to which the balcony was attached.
It was 1 a.m. and regretfully we had to take our leave.