My friend Chris is here from England so we have had a lovely couple of days. We went up to the mountain plains today to see if the sheep and the dreaded Maremma (live stock guarding dogs) have gone down to lower pastures and they had so we were safe to walk about, yay!
Chris with the boys
Kofi decided he wanted to be part of this monument (which is to remember all the shepherds who had died on the mountain)
Then we came across a wolf kill (and some wolf scat) which the dogs were really interested in and they both went into super sniffing mode..
It's olive harvesting time here and all alongside the roads the nets and pickers can be seen. Chris had asked how they pick the olives and as this is Italy and people are always falling over themselves to show you their traditions we were whisked away to watch both some olive picking and how they make the oil before we knew what was happening.
The nets are placed under the trees to collect the fallen olives and then the pickers go up the ladders with little plastic combs and brush out the olives...
Then the nets get tipped into crates and the crates onto the tractor..
The workers get 7 litres if oil a day and pick from 7am to 4.30pm..
This then gets taken to the oil press where the leaves are separated and then the olives are crushed by big stone wheels (now mechanical but once pulled by mules). The paste is then out onto these round things (don't know what they are made off- haha)
And then all these round things are stacked and then for 2 hours are pressed together so the oil all drips out. It was fascinating to watch and the owner gave us a bottle of freshly produced oil to take home and try. They didn't seem to mind the intrusion of 2 English people who wanted to come and be nosey and see how oil was made..!