Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Tuesday Afternoon - Day Three

Bertie emerges from the lounge and sniffs suspiciously at a small lake that has crept out from under the pink towel in the hall.  He decides not to get his feet wet and skirts it, choosing to tiptoe delicately across the mat at the bottom of the stairs which is meant to trap muddy footprints.

I've been catching up on University Challenge with the sound off and the sub-titles on. The noise of the buzzers makes Vita anxious.  Without the sound it doesn't have quite the same impact, especially in the music round, but I do gather that Merton College looks like a strong contender for eventual winner this year. I've not been paying sufficient attention to the task of mopping up and have allowed the water to accumulate.

Earlier in the afternoon we went into town.  The fog lights on the batmobile are switching themselves on at whim. So we leave the car at the garage run by the Portuguese family with an endless number of identical brothers and cousins and afterwards head off in the merc for the bank.  I've just paid for tiles for a new pool terrace and there's a large dentist's bill coming up and builders to pay. So I want to check that the bank will let me.  French banks see the money as theirs, only to be used with utmost prudence by their customers.  After waiting half an hour, I smile gratefully as the bank clerk with the suspiciously black hair tells me he's raised my "ceiling" to the maximum for a month.

We wander across the town square to the bandstand on the promenade above the Garonne. Groups of townsfolk stand gossiping quietly and gazing across what has become a grey inland sea.  Small green islands emerge from the water - each with its farmhouse and outbuildings.  The locals knew what they were doing when they built on the flood plain.

Martyn said he would come round to look at our small inundation.  He lives in the middle of the grey inland sea.  I don't think we will be seeing him any time soon!

He will also be laying our new pool terrace when the weather improves.  The slabs arrive on a large lorry which cautiously inches its way down our muddy, slippery chemin rural.  The driver insists we cut down a poplar which some years back had self-seeded by our entrance.  He is adamant he cannot get past. Otherwise, he tells us, his lorry will slide into the ditch alongside.  There's not much we can do other than comply - he's holding four pallet loads of our slabs to ransom. Eventually, poplar tree sawn down by hand (the chain saw was sulking) the slabs are gently lifted off by crane and left on the lawn - a promise of sunshine, swimming and sunbathing.

Tod has asked me not to grumble if we have a drought this summer.


  1. Yes, I remember that attitude of French banks in the period just before and after we moved....I wanted to draw the remaining amount from my account in cash...you would have thought that I was Gorge Soros shorting the pound from the reaction...

    1. Hello Fly. The cheek of it! Having the audacity to ask for your own money! :)

  2. There was an EDF lorry doing repairs to something on the roadside and we were passing gingerly in the car only just managing to keep on the tarmac. On our return there was a wonky lorry in the ditch that didnt make it. Long reroute around the problem for us and I suppose a muddy tug out for the lorry. Shame about any tree that had to be felled but better safe than sorry. We always laugh about 'hosepipe bans' when it is so wet. Lesley

  3. Hello Lesley, you're right. Hope the detour wasn't too tedious. :)