"Faster than the speeding light she's flying
Trying to remember where it all began
She's got herself a little piece of heaven
Waiting for the time when Earth shall be as one..."
I am not a huge Madonna fan but one of my favourite motivational songs is "Ray of Light".
It really does pump me up! And tonight, I am feeling ever so exhausted on a physical level but pumped mentally knowing (on counting our remaining stock figures, and sending yet more emails with tracking numbers to my amazing customers), that I CAN see that Ray of Light which I have been working so hard toward for the past few years.
Even when I was working at a gold mine, driving in and out almost 450km and working twelve hour days in almost fifty degree celcius temperatures for twelve days straight, I would still try to chip at the wine block on my days off or sometimes even when I was at work (at nights, while living at camp). Sheer dedication and perhaps desperation, which is finally, FINALLY paying off, in every way. I am so happy. My shoulders are not happy (from lugging dozens of wine for many weeks), but I am happy.
During my time at the mine, I paid off one wine business debt (instead of going bankrupt) and now, I can almost sniff that feeling again knowing that soon, the debt of Karra Yerta Wines will also be wiped out. No easy feat in the wine industry whether people want to admit that or not. I am extremely proud of my efforts and most of all, grateful for having the best customers that anyone could want, and also for the support of a few retailers that stay true to their word on making payment (harder to find than what you would think!).
I won't miss being in the wine industry, but I will miss the fabulous people who email me with orders and then words of thanks. Kind people. Good people. People like I used to meet physically when I still had Collective Barossa open. So many incredible life experiences, but at a cost. Many lessons have been learnt and though I am slowly getting over the angst that many caused me, the memories of their actions will stay with me and that is good as I will not make the mistake of giving out my trust or my energy to the wrong people again. Ever. Therefore the entire experience can only be good as I have learnt what NOT to do more than learnt what TO do. It is an interesting life, this wine business.
I still have friends in the business and I sincerely wish them well. Please do support Kurtz Family Vineyards and Gumpara Wines especially. Those guys rock! I know how hard it is to make any profit. I know how hard it is to do as much as possible yourself (who can afford to pay wages?), and I know how tiring it is having to chase people up for money. There sure are easier ways to live but when you are passionate, it somehow seems worth the blood, sweat and tears. I lost my passion. It was a raw and unexpected feeling and at the time, I didn't really understand just how much my life would change. I am so glad it changed.
I can hold my head high and those who spat nasty words at me can hang theirs in shame. I will not leave this business with any bad debt. A good friend once told me that when people say really nasty things that you know are simply not true, that they are speaking about themselves. Well, yes. The ones who were nastiest to me are the ones who owe people the most money and continue to lie. Ironic, yes? Indeed.
I do not mention this out of spite. I mention it because it is part of my story. MY STORY. I gave this industry a good crack and tried so hard to help promote the Barossa and failed. But as a person, I did not fail. The venom from some made me try even harder to succeed at my goal of having a responsible and respectful exit strategy. I have grown more than I thought possible. I see things with a whole new perspective. I believe that the most painful lessons teach us the best lessons. I look forward to selling the last few pallets of our wine, and then moving on to a completely different path.
Mid life Crisis? No! It is a Mid life Awakening. Bring it on! I don't know if I have posted this quote in any of my earlier blog posts but it is worth a repost anyway. From one of my favourite movies and much like the song mentioned earlier, one of my most favourite motivators EVER; from the totally brilliant film, 'Shawshank Redemption' - "Either get busy livin' or get busy dyin'...." I choose the former. Selah.
Cheers for now,