Cellar Rat: Day One

After only one day of working with grapes, pushing them around and picking out leaves and twigs and bugs from between the berries on a conveyor belt, my hands are already beginning to turn purple.

I had grape skins under my fingernails when I got home; even when I cleaned them out, my nails still look dirty, and there’s a dark stain in my cuticles that refuses to come out, even after three rough scrubbings.

My shirt was so sticky with grape juice when I arrived home that when I released my tote bag from my shoulder to wearily drop it on the ground, it had stuck to the side of me.  I peeled my bag away, the fabric of my shirt making that same sound as when a label is peeled from it’s bottle.

My feet are so weary from 11 hours of standing and walking.  I haven’t been on them this much since culinary school.  And my shoulders are already beginning to ache from punching down cold-soaking grapes in their bins.

I’m scheduled to hit the winery by 6 am on Wednesday, and probably won’t leave until 6 pm that night.

And so far, I’m loving every minute of it.

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