A Screwpull corkscrew.

I admit to feeling a sentimental attachment to certain objects. This oftenest happens with useful items I’ve owned for a long time. A case in point is the somewhat distressed-looking ‘Screwpull’ corkscrew shown above, of which I am very fond. I’ve had it for twenty-three years, and it has opened many hundreds of bottles of wine. Only on a handful of occasions has it failed me (and then only due to operator error, or a bad cork). Every other time it has been a joy to use.

Along with the joy, other feelings can sometimes be disturbed when I pick it up, like the lees in the sort of fine wines I can’t afford. It was a wedding gift from an old friend - but now I’ve been a widower for a decade, and the friend and I have long since fallen out of touch. Such things provoke reflection. I won’t be needing a corkscrew for the screw-cap bottle of New Zealand Pinot Noir that’s next to be opened. In line after that, though, is a nice-looking bottle of Barbera d’Asti, which will need uncorking. When I open it I’ll raise a glass for my late wife, and for Dr. M., whose excellent gift the corkscrew was.