I didn't take any pictures while at the Fossil Festival 'cause I was busy digging like a gopher, chasing teeny tiny teeth and eating and shopping and people-watching and enjoying the sun (a bit much) and and and it was a wonderful day, capped off by a slightly surreal visit to a winery. I'm glad my friend was with me 'cause I'd have probably bolted if I'd have been alone, and that would have been a shame 'cause that guy knows his way around a grape. I bought 3 bottles of his blush and 2 bottles of what he calls "Gold Crown." It's funny - the bottle doesn't have the fancy label that the wines do - it's just the name, with no identifiers. And this gold crown is not wine. He said it was something you sip, after dinner, like amaretto... except 36% alcohol. That's right, folks, I found "wine" that is 72 proof. Go me!
We followed the signs to the winery and found it not too far off the beaten path. We were skeptical - there's a faded for sale sign by the road, and the gravel drive is full of potholes. The trees overhang the ruts, which twist off unseen into the underbrush. Normally, the Jeep and I enjoy these little expeditions. My friend's Toyota wasn't sure. After all, this neighborhood is near the shoot-all-comers zone. As it happens, the underbrush was more of a tree line and the path soon took us past well-ordered vines, greening with new life. Then we passed a ramshackle barn and a couple of horses wandering around the driveway. And a bunch of chickens. And a faded, but lovely, old house. A small herd of enthusiastic canine greeters met us at another outbuilding - one with a very leafy patio. An old man met us out there and led us inside to a very low ceiling room with a fireplace at one end and a huge bar running lengthwise along one side. The bar was empty except for a line of bottles. We stood on one side of the bar, and Mr. Bennett stood on the other, pouring tiny gulps of wine into dinky plastic cups. He bought the winery after he retired and it's gotten too big for him, which is why he's selling. He was neat, and the wine didn't suck and it was a really cool ending to a great day.
I also have about four gazillion new pottery things to show. I'm told that I'm making progress. I'm not convinced. I have learned that glazing and wine are a bad combination. One helleva lot of fun, but not only does the productivity go way down, one ends up spending almost 2 hours during the following visit to the studio trying to undo what has been done. I do have a better understanding now of why the studio is sometimes in rather rough shape first thing Saturday morning. Given how much wine and chocolate and snacks we put away in less than 3 hours on Friday night, I'm not sure how it is that we don't find bodies strewn hither and yon some mornings.
The weekend was FABULOUS and I really needed it. I bounced into work all happy on Tuesday. That didn't last long. Splat! Oh, hi Reality. You bitch.
So today went as ever and then a bit after noon, I left to head to a supplier. I don't know what happened but less than 15 minutes after I left the plant, I was lost. This is my just in time supplier. I'm there ALL THE TIME. I drive nearly every time I go. This time? Totally backwoods-where-the-hell-am-I lost. Fortunately, I had the Garmin in the car and she got me back on track but I still don't know what happened. I mean, with my sense of direction, I spend a lot of time lost, and I frequently wander for a couple of hours trying to find my way back home FROM the supplier, but getting there is basically one road. And I managed to mess it up. REALLY mess it up. She got me back to roads I recognize, but it should not have been possible to get where I was from where I came from.
I called one of the guys that I was meeting, and told him that I was running late. He asked if I was lost... and I said something about how just because I was running late did not mean that I was lost and somehow, from my tone, he figured it out and apparently nearly fell into the press he was laughing so hard. When I finally arrived, I got to explain to a room full of tall, serious Germans that I got lost. On the one road that leads to the plant. On my (roughly) four millionth visit there. *sigh*
Unfortunately, that was about the last light-hearted moment of the afternoon because we have a HUGE new project that MUST NOT FAIL that starts production in less than 8 weeks and today I learned that we are really really really close to major disaster. I've been freaking out over this for months, but it's really crunch time now, and we are in hot water. And my supplier is stupid. Which makes me nuts. Dammit. This project is our future. We will rise or fall together and this has to work. Why don't you care as much as I do? How can you be so damn casual about this? "Oh yeah, I guess that is a problem." YOU GUESS?!!?!?!?!? We have less than two months before start of production of units to sell, you're looking at major problems that require major tooling changes, requiring a minimum of... 8 weeks and you'll give me an update on Friday. Or Monday. Depending. I don't F*CK*NG think so. I can't force you to care (although I will make us both miserable trying) but I can force you to move one hell of a lot more quickly than you apparently think you need to. *growl*
So after the visit, I went back to my plant (without getting lost, thank you very much) and sent off a bunch of not-very-friendly emails to some rather important (in my work life, anyway) people regarding the latest disaster that we're in. I imagine the fur will start to fly quite early tomorrow. Wish me luck.
When's the next long weekend? I need another one.