talk about not much to work with.

you do the best with what you've got.

it's a phrase you hear a lot, but is hard to really wrap your head around--really get at the heart of what that means. yesterday, when i was roaming various towns on Long Island, i found a place that was inspiring: Down the Rabbit Hole Wine Boutique. they were doing exactly that.

when i first walked past the storefront, that was what happened: i walked past it. but something made me pause. it could be the "Human Tasting" sign in the front with an arrow inside, or it could have been the word "wine." i'll leave the discerning to you. i walked in; the place was not 5 feet wide. it narrowed the farther in you went. it was, literally, a hole in the wall.

as prime property--main street in Sayville--it was too good to pass up, especially right next to the renowned Sayville Chocolatier (which was why i was there in the first place). but how to make it work? the proprietors ran with what they had, literally. keeping the concept of a hole in the wall that narrows as you go, the wine shoppe took on an Alice in Wonderland theme.

"Drink Me" pointed to the daily wine tasting on the counter. the right hand wall shelved all the wines, including Guilty and Innocent (the only place on the island to sell those, by the way!), grouped by prevailing flavour: Fruity [white rabbit], Flowery [madhatter], Earthy [caterpillar], Spicy [queen of hearts], and Sparkling [cheshire cat] with paintings above each section of the respective character.

there's more fun to be had there, so if you're ever in Sayville, check it out. in the meanwhile, take a lesson: sometimes working with what little you've got could be the best thing to set you apart.

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