Thursday, February 28, 2008

Another Cliff Hanger At The Vineyard

Driving through the vineyard at 1,600 ft. above the sea, the road buckled under the right rear tire sending the rented pickup truck on an uncontrolled descent towards the vineyard floor. With a silent "this is it" (rhyming with "oh sh?X!") exhaled with my last breath, the vehicle miraculously came to a halt one inch from a pole that stood more threatening than the sword of Damocles . Just another "cliff hanger" at the Blue Merle Vineyard.

Will we be able to extract the new rental car without damage to the vehicle?

Will Kevin, the local tractor wizard, come to the rescue?

Just how much does a salvage company charge by the hour?

Could one of the poles in the vineyard be used as leverage with a pulley to pull the car off of the pole?

Should we just cut down the two poles that are in the way and drive out?

Just how effective is the American Express Card insurance plan when you rent a car and you decline the expensive rental car company's insurance?

Just how "Forrest Gumpish" is the proprietor of the Blue-Merle Vineyard to drive on a dirt road the evening after a rain shower?

Y'all come back now, to find out what happens next.

(PS: Short update on Vineyard, Phase II: The trellis system is in. The drip lines are in. We've got gophers and weeds to deal with. We'll use an auger to start digging the holes this weekend. Nova Vines is shipping out the vines next week. We'll plant those babies in 9 more days. We were able to up the shipment to 235 vines, including an extra 25 Tempranillo, bringing the total to 1,085 spread on two acres. We also finished pruning the first year vines. More about that later. The gophers are attacking. Need to get an owl. Just warmed up this week; the snakes must be thawing out, so need to keep an eye on them. Bluey's paw getting better -- seems to be non-cancerous. He must have pricked it on a bougainvillea while digging. So, despite driving the truck off of a cliff, dealing with a leaky pipe that left us without water for a couple of days, vet bills, plumber bills, towing bills, rental car damage bills, college tuition, property taxes, tanking stocks, higher fuel costs, lower wages, more inflation, doctor bills, dentist bills and that darned squirrel that keeps picking the best of the avocados, life among the vines is pretty good!

"The silence of the vines distills a wife's song into sweet wine." -- A philosopher at the Blue-Merle

"The Vines don't talk back." -- Fidel, owner, Fidel's Vineyard Service.