For 2 weeks we were volunteering on an organic Farm, that produces fruit, vegetables and wine. Here are some stories we relived. Enjoy! :-D
Second day of helping out in the vineyard and we will be pruning vines today.
As we are complete rookies, Nathan explains to us, what needs to be done - with a saint like patience...
At the Cabernet Franc vines we count the grapes and just leave 3 of them for the two stems, that are coming out of the old wood. And we plug some of the leafs, so that the grapes get some air and a bit of sun.
At the Sauvignon Blanc we prune from the other side, clear a bit the foliage, take away all the small grape stems and just leave the really big ones.
You cannot imagine what kind of work that is. Its crazy hot. The sun sears your brain and burns your arms and legs. Small white bugs are jumping at you (organic…) and are instantly glued to your sunscreen lotion, weed scraps your legs, crickets jump, if you move, the odd spider or ant feels disturbed and climbs up your arms and legs. Wasps and bees of every kind are buzzing around your head and some of them seem to develop a special liking to you and just keep you an annoying company. At far you can hear a rattle snake rattling and it feels a bit like in a bad western movie, I am just waiting for the tumble weed.
For one row you need 3/4 of an hour. This is a small farm, we just have 26 rows of Cabernet Franc and 21 rows of Cabernet Franc for today and tomorrow.
Doing this work we get into an almost meditative state. You just try to blend out the annoying things and keep working. But one thought forms in both of our twisted minds: we will never ever - ever - complain about wine being too expensive.
Thinking about Germany, who have such steep hills, that most of them cannot be maintained with machines but need to be weeded, pruned and harvested manually like here - this really makes us humble. I guess we will never be drinking wine the same way as we did before.
And should you still think that wine is expensive, we will gladly send you here :-D