I wanted to tell you about this yesterday, but I had a few misgivings, and thought it may be better to await developements - but there haven't been any, as yet!
Now, I've heard about overtime being forced onto people - Police, Nurses, Doctors and more - in a vaguely criminal manner, but this beats the lot, and is so ingenious that the mind boggles.
The known facts are simple, but rather difficult to beleive.
It seems that a band of "wrong-doers" got busy on last Sunday evening and night, close to Montpellier in Southern France - not far from me.
It seems that they (and it is to be presumed that they were more than one) managed to go to a vineyard, and over the period Saturday night/Sunday were able to "harvest" over 30 TONNES of........GRAPES...!
The most unbeleivable part is that they managed to do so without attracting attention, without being seen - by anybody!
Now, to understand just how unbeleivable this is, you must know that although vineyards are not secured, not protected by guards and all the rest, to pick 30 TONNES of grapes needs a largish number of people, needs a largish number of vehicles ( 30 tonnes do not pass in your car boot), most of the vineyards are visited regularly by the owners, particularly on a weekend at this period of the year, because it is close to harvest time, and with grapes, all sorts of conditions must be right before the pickers can start.
At this time of the year, owners are therefore controlling - almost at hourly intervals - whether these conditions are present, before giving the go ahead. Maybe somewhere in the area, there are people tramping away at the 30 tonnes of grapes!
The simple logistics are mind boggling as well. How many people do you need, how many vehicles, to completely de-valorise more than 30 tonnes of grapes - where will you transport them to - what will you do with them - the well known Cooperative Wine Caves, mainly owned by local producers, wouldn't touch them - UNLESS they come from one of their own members! Transporting them to one of the few private wine producers would be extremely risky, SOMEONE must see the transporters, but - then again, SOMEONE must have seen something at the Weekend. It all smacks of a local farce, except it's not April 1st!
At the same time, I'm not too sure whether to condemn or congratulate the "illegal workers". To be able to do this requires an awful lot of manual and hard labour. If the same people were paid and employed in the normal manner, they probably would be unable to do the job - as well and as quickly!
Of course - the question now arises - "how will the unfortunate owner be recompensed"?
Strictly speaking he has been robbed, but equally well, his grapes have been picked!
They are somewhere, probably being turned into wine right now! Should his Insurance pay up.... should they pay for the useless investment made in harvesters (human and mechanical) - what about the now useless premises held free for stocking the grapes, who pays for the now unemployable human workers.....and a thousand other questions!
One thing is sure, this "robbery" will most certainly go into history.....
And....just yesterday I noticed quite a few "special offers" on the market and in the Supermarkets:
"Raisins (grapes) - PROMOTION - 0,99 cents/kilo" - pays d'origine FRANCE"
The more detailed description of the source was NOT given......!
........VERY SPECIAL OFFERS.....
weather at Vauvert, France
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