Mike walks around his small barrel room. He thinks of tasting, but just wants to walk around. Look at them with no real intention other than to look, realize where he is, what he’s doing. When he taught English at the community college he’d always talk about the “magic of the meta”. Not complicating, not overanalyzing, just knowing intimately where you are, what you do, why you’re there and the character you are as a result of being there.
He walks, can smell the wines but not as much as last week. He hadn’t done a sulfur hit in a while, and that was intentional. Didn’t want to scare the juice, or try to force it to do something or saying something, express voice it wasn’t meant to communicate.
Changing his mind, he grabs a thief from his workbench, the one his father built for him. Picks a barrel, no method or plan, or foresight. Just picks one. Syrah, block 3, lot 4E. In, out, seeing the color encourages Mike that he’s doing the right thing, that he needs to today taste. Puts a bit in a glass, about two ounces, possibly a bit more. Tasting, he didn’t feel anything he recognized since the last touch, which was…. Didn’t matter. He spun the deep, night-like tide in his glass. Put her closer to his senses, what was that. He doesn’t know. Mike dumps the rest back into the barrel, tastes from another. Same. What is she saying today, to him and only him. Is she telling him to back off? He doesn’t want to taste from anything else. To gun shy, wine shy, now shy.
Mike forces himself to walk toward the other door, then outside to the block, “3-4E” as he wrote it in permanent on barrel head. He looked at the vineyard, and only wants to walk. The spell, in steps, around the block, blocks.