Five years ago I met Roberto, an Italian wine producer here in the West Island. I was introduced to him through one of my good friends Daniel who imports wine. In the fundraising business, we put on many fundraising events including dinner and wines. Over the years, I imported many of his fine wines for our events. He would make the trek down to Montreal a few times a year, sometimes bringing along his sister Teresa or his niece Alice, who are all active in the family’s wine business. I have gotten to know them well and two years ago, asked them if I could visit them in Lombardia (Northern Italy) to help them with the harvest.
Long story short, I went to their vineyard in Italy in 2010 with a friend. We cut grapes for 3 days (8 hours a day!) and stayed on for the remainder of the week. A deep friendship with this family developed. It was a very natural process and it felt as if we had known each other for a long time. I now see them on average twice a year, and each time, the hours we spend together are precious and never seem to be enough. We love to talk about wine, food, business, life… you name it!
They were visiting Montreal this past week on business and we spent Friday and Saturday evening together enjoying great food, great wine (of course!) and great conversation. When they left, I thought about how easily we became friends and how much I value their friendship. I thought about that evening years ago when I met my friend Daniel for dinner at Le Chambertin because he wanted to introduce me to Roberto and Alice. I remember how I was feeling rather tired that night… not too much in the mood for meeting new people… but I went anyway. And I am so glad I did! We clicked right away. I felt such a connection with these wonderful people. A remember leaving the restaurant that evening with the certainty that I would see them again and we would become good friends. I think it comes down to values. We share similar values and traits that make it easy for a deep connection to take place.
What about you? Have you met friends while on a trip abroad, or met them here while they were visiting. How did you meet? How long has it been? Did you instantly know that you would see them again? How often do you see them? What makes your friendship so special?
So let’s raise a glass to friendship, local and abroad!