Leave Seattle (wow! that was a fast decision) and head to Hood River. Myself and Cole, my wonderful new travel companion and friend, camped Tues night and it was WET, WET WET! It was a good thing we could dry out on Wed night in the cabin
Cole and I relaxed for the day in Hood River making the best breakfast in the history of the world! We had perfectly runny sunniside up eggs accompanied by toast with a side of diced roasted vegetables (eggplant, carrots, zucchini, red capiscum), avacado and sprouts. It was amazingly yum, oh vegetables how I have missed you! In the afternoon, I went to the craziest thrift store ever and picked up acouple of warm items. There has been a snap in the air at Hood River meaning 'Winter is coming, rug up!'. In the eveing Lloyd picked me up and we drove to the wine makers house in West Salem. After hellos, wine and cheese I bunked with Emily and Derek fro the night.
Awoke to the smell of bacon, Emily is making egg Mcmuffins without the Mc part. Spent all day crushing new grapes (Tempranillo) and bottling wine that was ready. With a slow start due to forklift malfunction and many hands making light work, I reverted to a more primitive life form, the humble, excitable and neurotic squirrel. Once I started, I was on a roll. I collected 2 huge bags of hazelnuts and with help from some of my fellow female gathers (is it in the genes?) we shelled all of those beautiful fresh hazelnuts. We had over 8 cups! I may never be able to eat another store bought hazelnut again and for that matter I ate enough wild hazelnuts to not crave them for a while. After getting in touch with my squirrel side, we drove from West Salem to Hood River . Lloyd was tried so we stayed in the cabin. Drvivng a 60ft, 6miles/gallon vehcile while tired is not fun, poor fella. It's not like I could offer to help.
Lloyd and I arrived in Echo, Oregon yesterday afternoon. Lois picked us up after we dropped the semi off at the farm and we went to their beautiful home. Welcome back, Welcome home they said. I have the bottom bedroom in Lloyd and Lois' one of a kind house in Hat Rock State Park. My bedroom looks out to the columbia river and hammock with grape vines. A Sweedish couple, Anna and Bjorn are also staying and picking. So we are five grape farming peas in a pod. Lloyd and I took a nap and then we all ate dessert for breakfast, this is my kind of place! Lois made baked apples stuffed with cinnamon sugar covered in home made pastry! Yum! We had tea or chocolate with that. I then called my family (Stop worrying family! I wish worry was a botteled substance that once you used it all up, that would be it.) and went to bed to toss and turn.
My first day of picking! We had a sleep in, awaking at 6am and then heading off to the farm. The crew was there as were Anna and Bjorn. Clippers were handed out and off we went. Clipping them into a bucket while a runner empties them onto a tractor. It works better if you do this in a pair, one person on each side of the vine to get those grapes! We picked 2 grapes for one client: Tempranillo and Zinfandel. I liked picking the Temp better becasue while there were lots of little bunches they were relatively easy to get at and in good condition. The Zin were juicy and you got a juiced if you handeled them too much. Also, more were dried or bird pecked due to their location on the farm and I'd rather not have to make the hard decisions when it comes to what goes into the bucket and what doesn't. We are done picking early, the rest of the week will be a lot longer. We only pick to order and orders are coming up! 19 tonns for Wed!