Monday, February 4, 2013

Changes - Time may change me, but I can't trace time.

"I still don't know what I was waiting for
And my time was running wild
A million dead-end streets
Every time I thought I'd got it made
It seemed the taste was not so sweet
So I turned myself to face me
But I've never caught a glimpse
Of how the others must see the faker
I'm much too fast to take that test...."

Today marks ten months since I started a new job, in a new industry, in a new area of this amazing country of Australia. Frankly, it was the best thing that could have happened to me, for many reasons. As David Bowie sang, Changes............

I've said it a thousand times in recent months, but I do see life with completely different eyes. It is a beautiful thing. Yes, we still have our Liquor Licence, and yes, we still have wine to sell and this year again, grapes to sell, but slowly we are winding up things and gaining time to live again. We gave it our all, and I certainly thought I was moving in the right direction by opening a shop to sell the wines of three small family wineries, but I was wrong. It was a hard but good lesson. The same mistakes will never be made again. I still find it bizarre how the plans I made changed so dramatically, so fast. One thing really does lead to another and change cannot be stopped. I have learnt to embrace change. I used to hate change - I liked to make plans, and stick to them. Maybe that was my problem.

I have spent little time in the Barossa since April 4th 2012 and it is funny how quickly we adapt to new lifestyles. I must admit, the recent temperatures in the desert have taken their toll but with the roster that I am on, the months literally fly by, so the intense summer is fast coming to an end and soon it will be much easier to get through the working days, maybe even without wearing a fly net over my hardhat. If someone had placed a bet with me that I would be driving 450km to work before doing a six to eight hour day, and then working for eleven to twelve hours a day for almost two weeks in the desert, in an industry I had never really considered, I would have lost money. It just goes to show that one never knows..... anything. People are often not what they seem, we are often not what we seem, life is often not what it seems. More often than not, one has to delve deeper and really experience good and bad to have a more accurate understanding of much.

So that is where I am at, and I do appreciate that our customers and other business contacts have understood that I can now only do things in my time, and most importantly, when I feel like it. Coming home is primarily for rest, not to keep working flat out on the wine business. I am not Superwoman anymore and do not wish to be. I work to live, not live to work, these days. But, while things are still up in the air somewhat, I still have some work to do.....

On that note, we still have a lot of wine to sell, despite not making new wines for the past two years, and despite on-selling our (still in barrels) red wines to a fellow winemaker in the Barossa. As our website was hacked a few weeks ago, and very well I must say, I now cannot rely on that to assist me. I am still assessing whether I feel like spending my rare time off of work messing around, rewriting, reformatting and updating something that can be destroyed so easily.

We have had our 2006 and 2007 Shiraz Cabernets, and our 2007, 2008 and 2009 Eden Valley Rieslings out at great prices for most of the past year, and though we have sold a lot still have some left so if you are interested in purchasing any, please email me at

Our 2008 Shiraz Cabernet (Silver Medal at the 2009 Barossa Wine Show) and what is left of our 2010 Eden Valley Riesling (Gold Medal at the 2010 Canberra International Riesling Challenge) is available for $20 per bottle, or $200 a case, plus postage (bank transfer or cash only, no credit cards, sorry).

I have been rather tardy on marketing/promoting our wines in the past year, and perhaps the fact that we are winding down does not help our sales, but our wines are still great value and we are far from being the only winery that has decided to wind down dramatically (most are forced to close, and fast). As I have said in previous blog posts, there are many reasons for us taking this path, and perhaps one day soon I will elaborate on some of them.

For now, I just want to get our stocks down significantly more so that our storage costs are much lower. I am not 100% sure if we will ever make wine again, or not. That will depend on many things, but for me, passion. If my passion does not come back for the industry, then there is no sense in returning to it. My life is too short to put my all into something which does not make me happy a lot of the time. Perhaps after a special experience at the end of this year things will be different. We are going to go right outside of our square and do something that we would never have had the time to do had we made the decision to process our grapes this year and produce yet more wine to watch go into storage, and spend so much more money merely to hope and wait for any kind of return.

In the meantime, I am going to take life a week at a time, explore new opportunities when I can, and continue following my newest passion - taking photographs of the amazing country that I live in. I have never seen so much beauty in my life as I have over the past ten months. There is a lot more to see, and whichever road of work I take, I will continue to appreciate the things in life that many others forget to even notice. I hope you enjoy the photos included with this post. This is what life is about - experiencing beautiful things, not money, not prestige, not possessions. This is what MY new life is about. Living. Australia. I'm right out of the square, and never going back into it, ever again. I want to be in the whole chess board.

For those of you who have supported us in the past, thank you sincerely. For those who continue to support us, even bigger thanks. It really is appreciated. And again, I thank Steven of Kurtz Family Vineyards and Mark of Gumpara Wines for being the fabulous guys that they are, and for making the job of closing Collective Barossa much easier than it could have been had they been men of lesser qualities. Selah.

Cheers for now,