Walking in a Window Wonderland

Almost two weeks into the season, and I’m already getting the holiday spirit.

Let me preface this by saying, this is very early for me. I’m not the guy who warms up for the next round of festivities as soon the last dish is cleared from the Thanksgiving feast. In fact, it’s usually late on Christmas Eve—just after downing several Egg Nogs and sobbing while watching It’s A Wonderful Life—that I can even bring myself to say “seasons greetings.”

I’m especially scorched by the whole hit- the-ground-running approach to gift giving with its insistence that Black Friday is a national holiday that warrants arising at ungodly hours to secure so-called bargains.

So I guess you could sum up my overall holiday mood up to this point with one word: Humbug!

But today I had a transformation of Scrooge-ian proportions. And it happened in the most unlikely of venues: in front of a store window dressed for the season. I know, I know. Holiday displays are usually cheesy come-ons, but this was one was different. For me, it conveyed the true spirit of the season.

Pciture of Park Avenue Liquors holiday window.

Suspense over: It was the window at Park Avenue Liquors in Manhattan, filled with $140,000 worth of high-end spirits. I felt like a little kid again, pressing my nose to the glass to get a look at a Lionel train, a Flexible Flyer sled or “a Red Ryder BB gun with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time.” Only, in this case, I was taking a gander at 24 beautiful bottles, including Scotch whiskies (a 57- and 60-year-old Macallan, a Bowmore 40-year-old and the fabled Black, Glenmorangie Pride, Highland Park 50-year-old and The John Walker blend that includes whiskies from two different distilleries that no longer exist) and Cognacs (a magnum of Louis XIII Cognac, four different versions of Hardy Perfection, Hennessy Richard and Martel L’Or De Jean Martel).

God rest ye merry gentlemen! I could see again. Not only that I got my first letter to Santa in years already stamped.

It feels so good to embrace the holidays once more. Now, if I can only get myself into the spirit of giving (which my kids keep reminding me so vehemently I should have).

Maybe after a few sips of Glenfiddich 40-year-old.

George C Commack, NY, USA, December 9, 2011 4:48am ET
Liquid dream
John Spriggs Windsor, Ontario, Canada, December 9, 2011 3:01pm ET
Amen Brother. I hoping Santa puts one of those Scotches in my Stocking.
John Spriggs Windsor, Ontario, Canada, December 9, 2011 3:05pm ET
John S Windsor Ont.
Nothing better then a roaring fire and sipping on a dram...now that is the Holidays
Ltru Styles Whangarei, New Zealand, December 9, 2011 8:09pm ET
"Candy's dandy but liqour is quicker"
Ltru Styles Whangarei, New Zealand, December 9, 2011 8:10pm ET
"Candy's dandy, but liqour is quicker"
Jonathan Steffany Stratford, Ct, United States, December 12, 2011 1:34am ET
Mr , Bettridge bringing it home again loved the article and dont worry i hate christmas music so i seem a little bahumbug sometimes to. But nothing lights are fire better than a cigar and a glass of something great

cheers and Merry christmas
BRAD GOLDMAN, MD FACEP Delaware, OH, UNITED STATES, December 12, 2011 4:51am ET
Please post a high res photo we can download. I would love to have this as my sceen savor on my Mac montior :)

royskeane@gmail.com December 14, 2011 8:26pm ET
Reading about that store window brought a BIG smile to my face. Happy Holidays indeed!
Alston sammy Lakeview, OH, United States, December 31, 2011 6:19am ET
Nice quote Ltru Styles !
By the way Happy holidays Jack!
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=H4odfYjSSqE">n gauge trains</a>

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