Monday, September 29, 2008

"This is just like the (poopie) they do on ice road truckers!"

I know some of you may be wondering about the lack of postings these past weeks but there just is not too much to report. Last week I worked 80 hours (again) and the fruit just keeps coming in. We did 16 tons of grapes (pinot gris) on Friday, 16 on Saturday, and 18 on Sunday....yes Sunday. All of the cellar workers have become quite delirious as well, some of us even seeming quite mad. We have a running joke that when we pass our 13th hour of work in a day we always ask in a manner similar to an old war movie, "Permission to die sir." My boss always replies, "Permission not granted, go do punchdowns."

Jerry has me working on all sorts of projects lately. I had to insulate a barn so we could cool it down to 55 degrees to store fermenters, I had to insulate some pipes for a cooling system for new tanks, and lastly, I had to build a shed roof over the cooling system I put in. Seemingly I cannot escape being a carpenter. I remember at CAP, whenever there was something scary to do, like go to the peak of a rickety roof or touch some electrical stuff, Kevin or Donnie or Ross would always be the one to do it. But, with none of them around, I found myself the one teetering on top of an air compressor 2 stories off the ground. I had made a huge mistake.

Shortly after I got off the roof, a truck pulled in carrying 5 5,000 to 10,000 gallon tanks that needed to be installed in the winery. Due to our lack of skills in rigging and transporting 5 ton tanks, the cellar workers used forklifts and a huge crane to try to complete the job. My boss Aaron said, "this is just like the (poopie) they do on ice road truckers!" He then flashed the lights of the forklift and said, "niner niner niner!"

But, most of my days consist of sorting fruit and de-stemming it. The fruit is dumped on a large shaker table and 4 of us line both sides. We take out any moldy fruit or under ripened fruit. We are constantly taking fruit off the table and biting it to see if it pasts taste regulations. My beard is huge now and it is constantly getting seeds and juice in it. Enjoy that mental image. I really enjoy taking part in an ancient tradition and love testing the fruit, then the juice, then the fermenter, and finally the wine. It's a blessing to see the whole process unfold.

In other news, I am now beginning my applications to grad school. I have decided to pursue a Ph.D. in either neuroscience or clinical psychology to work with children with Autism. It has taken a great deal of prayer and thought to decide what to study but I am now beginning my applications to grad school. I am applying to Missouri, Carnegie Mellon, Wisconsin, UCONN, California San-Diego, Vanderbilt, and maybe others. I would appreciate your prayers and will keep you updated.



Anonymous said...

Great choice!

Glad to hear you are using your carpentry skills, but be sure to be careful because God has called you, as well as gifted you, with the desire and ability to help children someday, who may not even be born as of yet. Quite a noble calling indeed, and yes we will pray for you.

Plus, so you do not tramatize them even worse, you may need to trim or even forego the beard at that time, so enjoy it now and we will visualize you using it as a strainer of sorts. Not really a noble use, but amusing nonetheless.

Viva la pinot gris!

John said...

Get 'er done bud.

Anonymous said...

so i havent read in a while... sorry.
but after reading this last one, i remember why i have "forgotten" to read it.

the mental images, son.

trim the beard... if not for me, if not for anyone else, at least for those unsuspecting saps who will get the pleasure of finding a delectable orange piece of fuzz in their wine...

however, that would be an awesome episode in my soon to release sitcom... "my awkward life."

oh, and know you are always in my prayers, dear friend. im proud of you.