Last Wednesday we looked for progress in the vineyard behind our house and you’ll recall there was little to report. We chose one particular vine to photograph and share with you whatever we discovered.
It’s a red. Our neighbour told us. He walks that way all the time and says these are definitely reds growing there. But, we still don’t know which variety it is. As soon as I get to the bottom of this small mystery, I shall give it a name. You know the way women name their cars? That sort of thing.
In my time, I’ve driven Vera VW, Benny Benz, Harrison Ford (that was a white Granada and I loved it to pieces), Brian Orion and Veronica Vectra, to name but a few. Now, we have Pierre Peugeot. But I digress.
One week has passed. Come with me on a walk along the lanes.
The chateau below the village is near the river. It’s now a convalescent home and is the inspiration for one of my short stories. The weather has turned today. Those cold blasts from the mountains have stopped.There’s still a breeze, but it feels much warmer. It’s time to swap woollens for cottons.
There’s no visible difference in our vine. Maybe she’ll be happier when she gets a name. Marilyn Merlot? Sharon Shiraz?
But have a look at what’s happening in the vineyard next to our chosen vine. They are on the move and they’re sprouting fast.
Whites always develop fastest, apparently. Sometimes, the white harvest is weeks before they bring in the reds, depending on the weather. When the summer is long and dry, the whites are in danger of shrivelling into sultanas while they’re still on the plant.
Soon these support wires will be completely hidden and you’ll hardly be able to see between the rows.Partridge nest there and hide under vine leaves so red kites, circling above, can’t see them.
Let’s continue our walk. Follow the road beside the chateau as it turns toward the village. Here’s the other side. It’s a beautiful building.
When these trees are in full leaf, I wouldn’t be able to take this picture; the facade of the building would be obscured. Keep walking, up through the village centre and back toward home. Pass the Mairie (town hall) on the way up the hill, back toward the vines at the top of the village and out into open country beyond.
We love living here. We love tasting the fruits of the vines each year and finding new favourites.
Next week on the Wednesday Vine Report, I’ll show you more of the village. And more of the vines. Signing off from Languedoc.