Twenty-three degrees at eight- thirty this morning and I'm struggling to get the drip system for the new hedge to work properly.
Crouched on my knees among brittle thistles, I make more holes in the black tubing for the watering attachments alongside each small plant. Water runs through the hose and it squirts and spits at me soaking my shorts as I work. In the hard bleached sunlight the occasional soaking refreshes.
Buzzards and kites hunt across Serge's stripped wheat fields. The combines worked late into the evening through the week and he followed one night with the baler - chug, chug, thump, thump, clang, clang - the bales now left scattered through the bone-dry stubble.
With the promise of temperatures in the upper thirties this afternoon, we open up the pool. But it's too hot to linger so we retreat to the cool of the kitchen to sample the hazelnut and apricot tart I made last night. Something in the meld of flavours clashes slightly, but we take a second piece, just to make sure. Next time I'll try the hazelnut with pears and chocolate.
Typing this, I glance up to see Monsieur F trundle past on his tractor, bouncing down the slope between his field and our small orchard.
Moments later I hear the gentle swish-swish, swish-swish of the water canon across the maize as it rustles in the scorching wind.