With Colonel Freeleigh's death Douglas comes closer to understanding what death means. He realizes that it is not simply the physical being that no longer exists but also that all that was contained within the person's mind is gone forever. The colonel's mind was possibly the greatest one that Douglas and his friends had ever come across, for he was truly a Time Machine. This loss makes Douglas quite sad, and he is gloomy while bottling the dandelion wine with his grandfather, but a sip of the wine is enough to lift his spirits once again and infuse him with energy. Even amongst all of the sadness that has been a part of Douglas' summer his grandfather helps him remember that there is still much fun to be had. The bottles of wine hold all of the summer within them, the sad events and the joyous ones, and it is a part of summer to move on and enjoy the rest. Douglas is learning that life often involves moving on, not forgetting sad events but not dwelling on them either, thus allowing happiness to return.