Post by BrritSki Post by Btms
Second chance summer may be of interest - wed 05 at 9.00pm
Yes, it's on the Sky box ready to watch tonight.
Thanks for thinking of me, review later....
Well, interesting programme, usual reality TV nonsense and I won't dwell
on the group dynamics, but there were some nice bits and we enjoyed
relating to our experiences
The location is beautiful. Before we moved to Italy we jolidayed
(TWATBILI) in that area a lot and even stayed at a La Bandita (although
I cannot find it again, despite several in Tuscany with that name) and 3
or 4 times at Tenuta Col di Sasso:
The Italian locals were lovely (as they are here mainly), especially the
lady who laughed as we did at the idea of an African room and the priest
who seemed very sensible. The priest who was here when we arrived was
very old school and did not welcome our grandchildren into the church
because their parents were unmarried. His replacement is much nicer,
younger, short and stout, loves his food and wine and very friendly. He
calls Jack "baby Jesus" which we always find a bit sacrilegious.
We too bought chickens (but only ever 2 at a time) and were also invited
to take the 2 we wanted and failed dismally at catching any of them. I
think it's a trick played on foreigners, but maybe it's to show they
haven't chosen duds.
If they think that the grape harvest is hard work (it is) they have
another think coming when they find the real work starts with the
pruning and then bending the short stem down and tying to the wire
without them breaking. And then you have to spray every 10-14 days, very
early while it's still still (iyswim) and keep the vines trimmed so the
grapoli get just the right amount of sun.
We too have had battles with wild boar. We now have a fence of steel
mesh (the stuff that is used to reinforce cement) all round the property
(5,000 sq.m.) with gates. Electric fences are not much use unless you
check them every day as they were doing which is not easy on steeper
ground and we think that most of their grape eating was done by the
boarlets that would slip under the lower strand of fence without too
much trouble - bigger boar would have done far more damage.
We laughed at the health-and-safety question re the olives and also at
the safety glasses for grape picking. We are waiting for someone to cut
a fingertip off with secateurs as that's the most common injury. There
is no way that so many vines can be picked in 2-3 days without an army
of helpers - I guess each farm helps the others nearby. Be interesting
to see how they make the wine.
Olives will be much easier over the course of a year. We spray those
against the fly, but that's only possible if you have a few trees and
they're kept small. The bigger trees/estates it's impossible, so you
just take pot luck. Last year was a really bad year for the fly so most
people round here had no olives at all. We only just picked enough for
oil for our own use.
SoL and his brother and Dad have a mechanised picker which is like 2
sets of hands that flap together with the plastic "fingers" entwining to
knock the olives off. They have two batteries so they can run it all day
and the olives land on nets which are then gathered up into sacks. They
are really hard workers and then can just about pick 600Kgs in a day,
but it's too hard to do every day on rough terraces and of course the
olives have to be taken to the mill to be pressed.
I think we might have met one of the participants out here with a friend
from Stroud (no, not PP), it will be interesting to see how it all works