August 8th 2018
My son’s 38th birthday today, makes me feel old, he celebrated his 11th here the first year we bought this house!
We have been here 5 days now and there has been a mixture of events and experiences. It has been very hot with day time temperatures of 35-37 degrees and night times being in the 20s.
Most evenings we sit outside with a drink, interrupted at about 9pm when we feed windfall apples to the donkeys in the adjacent field, then we settle down and as the sky darkens we begin to gaze upwards waiting for the stars to appear. It doesn’t take long for the sky to be a mass of twinkling stars with the plough and other constellations being very prominent and as the sky darkens, the Milky Way becomes more and more prominent. We usually recline our seats to enjoy this star gazing and for the last few nights Layla has taken to leaping on my chest lying down with her head on my shoulder and falling asleep. When she does I find it harder and harder to stay awake myself as I listen to her gentle breathing.
Last evening was slightly different as by 8pm the sky was covered in cloud, at about 10pm we had a rain shower that lasted two minutes, and the temperature dropped by12 degrees, then to the south of us a thunder and lightning storm began, the lightning lit up the sky showing the trees around the field in dark silhouette, the thunder rumbled but it was some way off in the distance, we retired indoors at 11pm.
Our motor home buddies Peter and Alison are here too in their French house and we have been enjoying their company and swimming pool.Layla achieved her red swimming badge for completing a width of the pool.
I should by now be used to the French approach to August, i.e. closures of many businesses for a week, maybe two and often the whole of August. We have been having some difficulty getting Homer off our drive and so decided to lay a new surface of calcaire ( limestone chippings). The quarry of course has plenty but would only deliver in 10 tonnes loads and I only needed two, other outlets I approached couldn’t help because it is August, so Peter and Alison came to the rescue with their car and trailer and we have so far made 4 visits to the quarry and collected and laid 1.5 tonnes.We do however have to get a move on getting the rest because the quarry closes on Friday for its 2 week holiday.
Interspersed with these activities we have mowed 2.5 acres of field, the house has been cleaned from top to bottom and we have managed to fit in a vide grenier, purchasing a few items.
Today I went to pay the house insurance, for the second year running I hadn’t received a reminder showing the payment, usually I pay by cash as the office doesn’t have a system to pay by card. When I mentioned today that in England I would pay over the internet with my card, the agent replied ah yes you can now do that with us! We sat together at his computer and completed the details for my internet account and I will now receive each year my bill by email and I have paid by card PROGRESS! and it doesn’t matter if it’s August.
For the second year running Lidl has no ice cream the fridges are empty, those German eskimo ice cream makers must be on their annual August holiday.