Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Seven am Starts

Independence Day, not unlike the Canada of July 01. As mentioned in the last posting I don't see much room for independence, as would any other TI.

We began this week with a 0700h start time in the vineyard, to avoid the heat of the afternoon. It helped some; it was to be 32C today, but never felt warmer than 30C by the time work finished.

It seems we will be losing two of the vineyard crew by the end of the week; a long planned departure of the NZ woman, and another guy is going to work for Value Village. That would leave four, and we are well behind on this arduous manual tucking. (Tucking the vines between the top pair of wires in this case.) Many vineyards have a simple means of getting the wires out of the way and then bringing them up at the right time to tuck (or keep) the shoots in a vertical position. But pushing them in by hand is for the birds as far as I'm concerned. Once, at an established vineyard, our crew of 10 tucked 30 acres over the day. I doubt if the six of us tucked an acre by manual means. There has to be a better way.

There was a better way to tuck the vines; what we did before. If one drops the top wire to the ground (after pulling the tendrils off, no mean feat), then puts the wire back on the post, one can tuck 20' at once, no individual handling of shoots. Except that my tucking partner, the Difficult Dick, didn't want to cooperate and our efficiency was much reduced. Still better than manual tucking thankfully, but it could of been a whole lot better. I never did see the crew boss all day today, and I don't think the others did either. As usual, the Difficult Dick did his backing and forthing, fussing and obsessing about getting every shoot just right, which is absurd for a small crew for 22 acres. Anyhow, it got good and hot, 32C, in the afternoon, and I was doing fine.

Then in the evening I worked for two hours at a part time gig, same place as last night when doing hedging.

A birthday to remember; Difficult Dick didn't want to cooperate, even if he wanted to work "together", even if he plainly said that the trellis wire method was much more efficient yesterday. He wanted to hand tuck the whole thing. Fine, I said, I will work your side when I am done mine, which is what I did, doing 3/4 of all the row tucking. That, or something else pissed him off and he spoke to the boss man who then drove around and told me to "cooperate" with Difficult Dick. I said we were getting tucking done 30 minutes faster using the wire raising method, the one the vineyard was designed for. He said to "cooperate".

When working up the row, I asked Difficult Dick what he minded about my tucking, but he wouldn't say. Then I asked him what he told the boss man, and he said, "he wanted to know where you were and I told him". Right; the boss man drives around to give me explicit instruction all on his own. Difficult Dick then said I should work alone, and I said we should surely each work with someone else.

Later, the adjacent crew told me the conversation between Difficult Dick and the boss man went on for much longer. On the way back at lunch break, I mentioned this to him, and then he got very pissy, and fessed up that I "was rushing down the row". Not that I was, and there were many, many shoots to pull above the wire. It is just that wire tucking is a whole lot more efficient. Apparently the boss man spoke with him at lunch. And lo, when with my new crew mate for the afternoon, there is Difficult Dick in the next row doing the wire tucking method, the very thing that he complained about to the boss (about me). I had to laugh, and bite my lip, and refrain from asking if he was "rushing". Oh so tiresome, working with a Passive-Agressive liar, grump, sandbag, tattle-tail (who got it wrong) and generally uncommunicative asshole. Anyhow, I decided that I didn't want to tip toe around this landmine of a passive aggressive grump for the next two months, so I quietly began inquiries about working elsewhere.

The perps kept me up last night with five rounds of painful leg cramps jus to rub in the above hassle of the day.

Two part time jobs today; smokey all day; a way of reducing the sunlight exposure and keeping the heat up during the day time.

I "forgot" my vitamins the the morning of the weekend's second day, which forced me home, as I felt an energy suck-down.

Then I was pummeled with planted notions of winning the lottery, because "some one in BC won recently" was on the radio. I had bought a ticket a week ago, but no, I did not win, and all those fantasized plans came to a big nothing. Are they really going to let a victim of abuse and relentless harassment have some freedom by having some cash on hand? No way, but they kept inserting ML imagery to help me spend it, or otherwise control the circumstances. How about leaving me all alone?

Another day of tucking. What was to be 36C today of unrelenting sunshine turned out to be a good part cloudy, with a spot of rain, and some 30C. I stayed out of Difficult Dick's way, and he out of mine. All day I was kept in a mode of processing yesterday's bullshit, even though I had long consigned it to him being an obdurate asshole. The unanswered question remains, "what was that all about?" That was the fourth run-in with Difficult Dick, and that is on the basis of avoiding him since I began the gig in 02-2017, based on prior information from last year. In all likelihood, this whole tempest in a teapot was set up then.

Busy working three jobs of late, soon to be two. The part time weekend vineyard wants me full time so I can now leave the Difficult Dick behind. The boss man didn't seem too perturbed about a week's notice when he is already down two workers, both leaving for other jobs. Nor did my planted scheming to tell him about the cumulative travails of Difficult Dick arise. I kept it straight, cool and innocuous. And of course he didn't ask why I was leaving, an obvious omission of genuine interest.

Anyhow, I best post this before I get any further behind.

And I see "local dimming" has come on for the past three days. Hot weather, but limited sun because of the forest fire situation in these here parts, some 240 of them concurrently. Nothing too local, though an near-completed apartment complex burned down in Kelowna. A small fire there, and bigger fires elsewhere. The perps love a good fire, and the more the merrier. Two years ago they pulled this shit for a week or two in the summer.

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