This is going to sound terrible (don't you love it when a post starts that way?), but sometimes I feel like my job is full of adult baby-sitting. Which I suppose is a given when you work in alcohol or hospitality or anything that involves five 17-hour days of hosting 57 people for a tour.
For example, these shoes:
|These MFers better have magic powers.|
One of the guests forgot them on the bus Monday night, and I spent the rest of the week calling dispatchers to try to find them. (First of all, who leaves their shoes on the bus? How the hell can you just forget your shoes?) And then, after finally locating the shoes, I now have to ship them to said guest because they weren't delivered before she left for the airport. Grrr.
Thankfully, the week was not just about missing footwear. There were vineyard tours ...
|Best bird abatement idea ever.|
... led by the pioneers of Washington's wine industry.
|Norm McKibben of Les Collines Vineyard|
We learned about ripeness levels in grapes and how to tell when it's time to schedule the pick ...
... and got to wear these cool glasses because, you now, safety first and all.
I met Tom Douglas ...
|He's very large.|
... and ate his incredible food.
There was beautiful scenery ...
|The Wallula Gap|
|Washington-Oregon state line|
... and incredible sunrises.
And I named my bus the Pirate Ship Revenge and did a whole "Princess Bride" meets the Jolly Roger theme, complete with fake mustaches and plastic cutlasses.
And of course, an R.O.U.S.
(I swear to god, I'm normal and didn't spend all of my downtime taking weird photos with a giant, creepy rubber rat. Maybe only 50 percent of it.)
And then there were the people -- the lovely ones who did not forget their shoes and functioned like capable, grown-ass adults and were funny and silly and incredibly wine knowledgeable, like E.J. from San Francisco:
|"I think it's corked!"|
I also reunited with Shannon, whom I first met at Restaurant R'Evolution in New Orleans way back when.
The above photo may have actually captured the exact moment I decided I'm doing the New Orleans 70.3 next spring.
Anyway, I am now back in Seattle and real life. Which means cleaning cat poop instead of polishing wine glasses, spending all day on the bike instead of in a tour bus, and freaking out over the roughly seven weeks I have left until IMAZ instead of stressing out over whether we're going to make it to the next winery on time.
Dude: SEVEN WEEKS.
I think I just pooped a little.