It is here. I’ve been dreading it for…um…12 months now.
The vines start out all nice and innocent in January, pruned short and with no leaves on them. Then slowly over the coming months the vines grow…and grow…and grow… They look like they will just reach out into the road and GRAB you while you drive past and then you will never ever ever get free! Oops, guess I’m getting carried away!
It is true, though, that the time has arrived for the grape harvest (vendimia). We have no grapes ourselves – this is one of the big tasks that we help our friend Manuel with every year. I usually help with the picking, and Kenton helps with the pressing. Those tasks suit our relative strengths and sizes, I guess, but it is pretty gut-wrenchingly hard work, however you look at it!
8:30 am the day commences. We pick until ‘breakfast’ Spanish-style, at 10. Half an hour break with some bread, tomatoes, salchichon and maybe some cheese. Then on with the picking until 2:30, when Manuel serves up a huge, one pot lunch. Rabbit with fried tomatoes, fried potatoes with chorizo, paella – the list of main courses is short, but all are fabulous, cooked on an open fire. Then back to work until 6 pm or so – when I take the dogs home and start the usual household chores! Kenton usually finishes a bit later than I do, about 8 pm.
After showers, we settle down for a light supper, and usually an early bedtime! Sleep like a log, then repeat for the next 5-6 days.
I thought I’d show you a picture from last year’s vendimia, just so you can get a flavour of it!