33 on 33: Day Fifteen

I lay out in the sun too long and burned off all of my skin
I felt so dizzy I got into my car and got into an accident
Out of the burning wreckage I fell only wanting to lay where I fell and
Rest a while, rest a while

–TMBG, "Rest A While"

Today's stop for 33 on 33 was at Huyck's Bay Road, as the highway finally turns eastward toward Wellington (here's my Map of Progress), and of course, right at this bend in the road is the Sandbanks Estate Winery, so I parked beside some rows of grapes and painted them:

Hey, that sign on the bottom left looks familiar...

Soon after we moved to Prince Edward County, while we were still establishing Small Pond Arts, I worked these very vineyards for much of the summer.

It's easy to romanticize the job, focusing only on the beautiful sunny days (or cool overcast days like today; there's no work if it's pouring rain), birds flying overhead, their beautiful songs punctuated by the occasional breeze off the lake, carrying with it the fresh scent of summer, all the while knowing that these very vines you're tending, pruning the leaves and shoots, tying the canes, nurturing the delicate bunches of grapes, these fruits of months of care and dedication will yield some remarkable wines to be enjoyed with friends and family in happy times, be it this very summer or years from now.

The wrath of grapes.

And, while all of that is true, that's the romantic version of the actual job. I could write another run-on sentence detailing the serious difficulties that go along with all the "nice" aspects of working in a vineyard (any vineyard), but I'll only say this: one day I was pruning the vines for nearly eight hours straight and my right hand swelled up, disabling me for days. Since I paint with my right hand, this was unacceptable, and, by the end of that summer, I vowed to never work in a vineyard again.

But vineyards are nice to visit and paint, so I set up inside my van (yep, third straight day of rain) and got to work. I was able to have the side door open for most of the time, though, as the rain was intermittent and mostly just misty.

And here's the painting.


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