It lives!

And by ‘it lives’, I obviously mean that it doesn’t live. You should have known that! …And by ‘it’ I mean my yeast! No, not that yeast…. gross. I mean the yeast in my rooibos tea brew!

The airlock has gone almost silent – I watched it for a good 15 seconds before I forgot what I was doing and went down stairs… but in those 15 seconds the mead greeted me several times, and the tea did not, ok!
Anyway, I took a specific gravity reading of my brew. That is, I checked the ratio of the density of the brew to the density of water. It’s at a whopping 1.002! To put that in a little perspective, water is 1.000.

Let me take a step back.

In terms of brewing, the gravity readings are how you work out alcohol content and whether or not the yeast is still active. The reading is influenced by the amount of sugars present in the brew. Yeast eats sugar, and poops alcohol and CO2. The longer the yeast have reign of your brew, the less sugar there is, and the more alcohol there is. Easy peasy!

So, for example, the mead (25 litres including the 6kg of honey), started off with a gravity reading of 1.077, and is currently at 1.025. Utilising my Caroline’s-abnormally-brawny-brain, I have determined that the mead has an alcohol content of 6.8%… only 7.2% left to go…. yeesh.

Back to the rooibos: with a reading of 1.002, it’s clear that there is not much sugar left in there. That’s not to say that there wasn’t much to start with, there was a whole bunch of sugar in there! We also, somehow managed to not record the initial reading… which is a pain. What I’m trying to get at, is that I think it’s almost ready to go through the beastly still!
I have afternoon Monday set aside for distilling, but it depends on what my reading is tomorrow. If tomorrow’s reading is also 1.002, then I know that the yeast is caput!

Right. Onto far less interesting things.

I found this under a log!

DSCF0554Yes, you see correctly. No, surprisingly you are not losing your mind. That is indeed a crab.

I have a dwindling pile of logs in my yard that I’m slowly turning into steps. Yesterday, I when lifting one particularly large one, I found a burrow. At first glance, I thought I saw a snake’s head peaking out at me, but when I went in for a closer look, I saw crab legs!
It may not be clear in this photo, but I assure you, it was very much alive and unharmed. It was just chilling in it’s little… crab burrow? What?

Last time I checked, crabs live at least close to the sea… not 7km up a hell of a hill, in the ground. Any insight?

Another update that is not as important as my brews!

Steps and paths and junk! As some of you may know, I’m working on the clearing that I’ll be married in, at the start of next year. Recently, I’ve completed the actual clearing, and have been putting my back into getting steps in for all them oldies.

Welcome to my back yard!

As you can see, I had a helper this time. And by ‘helper’, I mean a ‘sit-while-you-do-all-the-work’ …er.
These steps go about halfway down to the clearing. I have a lot left to do. At least I’ll be in shape for my wedding!


7 thoughts on “It lives!

  1. Showing for I a picture of the clearing! Also… “I thought I saw a snake’s head peaking out at me, but when I went in for a closer look,” YOU THOUGHT IT WAS A SNAKE SO YOU WENT IN FOR A CLOSER LOOK this is how you die 😛

    1. You should have seen the snake we found today. About a meter long, I think, and very agitated. I went in for a closer look of that one, too.
      Also, no on the photo of the clearing!

  2. Once upon a time, many years ago in Bedford, we heard an ominous scratching noise coming from a crack in the loung wall… and yes, it was a crab, at least 1 km away from the nearest stream, trying to climb up to our ceiling, for some reason!

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