I have just returned from yet another epic Scotland road trip, which led me to Campbeltown, the Orkneys and Fife. I’ve been travelling to Scotland for the fifth year in a row and this year’s trip was yet another unforgettable experience, which once again reminded me of the main reason why I like whisky as much as I do.
Yes, whisky, to me, is the best aged spirit category in the world and I love smelling, sipping and enjoying the amber nectar above any other kind of drink. It’s diverse, it’s multi-faceted with unrivalled depth. But what really makes it for me, is a special breed of people: Whisky folk. Whisky folk are the best kind of people to surround yourself with and this year’s road trip has, once again, reassured me of that!
Whisky folk are the kind of people who engage with each other, exchanging thoughts and opinions on their beloved drams and exchanging samples with each other – or just passing around a glass at a festival, not caring how many people drink from it. They are quick to help – be it providing information or practical help. Whisky people flock together and are trusting – inviting each other to their homes and booking cottages together for a week in Scotland without ever having met in person before. Whisky folk engage in discussions at events and festivals, visit distilleries together, connect with passionate people working in the industry.
Because of my interest in whisky, I have found many friends, spread across the entire globe. Online friends turned friends met in person, some of which have turned into very close and best friends, despite substantial physical distances. Some of the best experiences and moments in my life so far have been because of and shared with whisky friends. I have offered, I have given, I have received – liberally. Being involved in the whisky community for a number of years now, I can’t attend a festival or event without people coming up to me and introducing themselves (I am terrible with names and faces, so I am glad people recognise me), or even out themselves as avid readers of this wee blog. People ask for my opinion and I have a network of people to rely on myself for which I’m eternally grateful for.
Before I got into whisky I was a nobody, stuck in a sleepy little Upper Austrian town where nothing exciting ever happens and without many people with mutual interests nearby. Because of getting into whisky, my life has been transformed for the better. My life is now filled with more and much closer friends all over the world and with things to look forward to on the dullest and most challenging of days – and people to get you through them.
In short: Whisky people are the best kind in the world and they are the best thing about whisky. Without people, whisky wouldn’t exist and without whisky, this special breed of whisky people wouldn’t exist!
Here’s to old friends, new friends, yet-to-meet friends, whisky friends all over this planet earth – slàinte mhath, until we meet again!
What are your thoughts? Have you had memorable experiences because of a common love for whisky? Let me know in the comments section below, I’d love to hear your thoughts!