I love this job!

I have the opportunity of conducting wine tours throughout the Niagara Peninsula and the Vineland area for Grape and Wine Tours. I have had the privilege of guiding over 4600 guests on over 330 trips in wine country. Our goal is to have fun and inform our guests to make them more knowledgeable in this great product. Our guests come from all corners of the world. Each wine tour is unique. Whether it is the unusual activities that take place during the tour, or the special people that join us on the tour. They bond together as the day progresses to create an exciting day.

Let me relate to a trip that I was conducting last year. We had picked up five groups, totalling approximately eighteen people from various hotels in the Niagara Falls area for the tour. I make it a habit to enquire where each group originates from. On this particular trip we had people from the United States, Europe and different parts of Canada. One particular Canadian couple stated that they were from Camp Borden in Ontario. I immediately associated this with the military base. This couple had been in Niagara Falls for several days on a mini vacation and decided to go on a wine tour before departing back home.

After a tour and wine tasting, everyone was taken to one of our finer area restaurants for lunch. Everyone sat at the same table, got acquainted with each other, and exchanged conversation throughout the meal. After lunch we continued our wine sampling at three more wineries. After the tour, lunch and samplings, we started our journey back to the hotels.

“Trips like these makes my work a joy.”

At this point I usually engage in conversation with our guests to get their comments of the day’s activities and what plans the guest had for the near future. When I got to the couple from Camp Borden, seated near the middle of the bus, I asked the gentleman, whose age appeared to be in the mid twenties, what his plans were. He stated that he was an officer in the Canadian Army and that he was leaving for Afghanistan in less than a week. When he said that, you could have heard a pin drop on the bus. I questioned him as to what area he was being dispatched to, he stated, north of Kandahar. He stated that his detachment was going there to train the local troops to police the country when all of the foreign troops withdrew after the “cease fire”.

Our other guests started wishing the couple well and asking questions, such how will he communicate with his wife while they were apart. He stated that because he was an officer he had the privilege of internet on his computer. He was also asked how often they could shower or bath. His reply was, “Whenever the water truck came in” The wives in the group exchanged e-mail addresses with the military wife to keep in contact with him.

I made sure that this couple would be the first passengers to disembark off the bus at the end of the day. Needless to say, they received tremendous ovation as they left the bus in tears.

Trips like these makes my work a joy.