My mother lived to be 94 and one of the things that kept her going like a Duracell battery was a small glass of brandy before dinner. She liked blackberry brandy the best and so do I. Long ago when I was in the army in Germany a buddy and I decided to spend Christmas in a Catholic country that no other GIs knew about, so we chose Belgium. We got up before dawn to catch a trolley from our kaserne (army camp) in a suburb into the city of Frankfurt and had a half-hour wait for a train to take us along the Rhine river to Brussels. Our stomachs were queasy so we left the hauptbahnholf (main railroad station) and went across the street to a gasthaus (tavern) and ordered blackberry brandy. (I had remembered my mother said it settled upset stomachs). The portly, red-faced waiter smiled, rubbed his stomach, and poured us each a small glass of the elixir that heals stomach aches and leaves you in a mellow mood. It worked instantly to calm our queasy stomachs and gave us a mellow feeling. Maybe doctors ought to prescribe blackberry brandy instead of pain-killers. Mom didn't die of any disease at 94, she just "tired-out." She had recovered from a fall in which she had broken one hip, then about six months later fell again and broke the other hip. She said she just wasn't up to the therapy for the second hip and also was ready to go and meet the Lord. Before she died, she said that she had an "ethereal" visit from some angels or someones, telling her they would soon be taking her to a beautiful place she would like very much. I never remembered Mom knowing the word "ethereal" or what it meant. But she spoke of it just before going to paradise. Al this comes to mind because of just having poured a small glass of blackberry brandy. It may be a placebo, but what a way to go! It does more to relax me than an Advil or anything else.