For the second week of work, we start at 8am everyday. I’ve been stuck with pumpovers. Which isn’t bad. It's a chance to see and taste all the fermentations as they progress. Checking sugars, does the fermentation smell good, checking the temperature, if you start to smell sulfides then giving it air. Lately with all the fermentations we have going, it takes me the full 8 hours to complete them. And that doesn’t include all my side tasks. Cleaning tanks, or look that tank is overflowing so we need to find a place to fit some juice, or make up all the additions, or rehydrating yeast to inoculate a tank. And then next think you know, it's already 6 pm. I’m tired. Covered in grape juice/wine. And when we actually are all done cleaning up from the day. It’s 8 pm. These long and busy days are pretty typical during harvest. It's what I expected, but it doesn't make it any less tiring.
Even though I'm doing pumpovers, we are still receiving and processing fruit. This week I think we processed more Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Shiraz, and Viognier. Besides our vineyard at Sunshine Creek, we get fruit from other vineyards as well.
And after a long day, Simon and I still have to walk home. It's just a short walk, but on the way home it's slightly uphill. Sometimes it’s still light outside. And some days it’s dark and we have to walk by the light of our cell phones. Kangaroos come out at night. And when we're walking home in the dark, you can hear all the kangaroos hopping around us and through the vineyard.
One of these nights walking home, Simon tells me about drop bears. That apparently they hide in the trees at night, they're as big as a bear, but swift like a panther. And that they kill hundreds of people every year. He's pretty convincing. And immediately I start looking at all the trees, actually a little worried. There's deadly snakes and spiders, so sure there's deadly drop bears too. I start asking all these questions like "OMG, are they around here, have you ever seen one?!" And he just starts laughing... apparently they're a made up creature to scare away tourists. I googled drop bears and there's hilarious pictures of koalas with fangs.
At the end of this week, I have worked 12 days straight. Working probably around 65-70 hours a week. When the boss said that I get to have Sunday off....THANK GOD.