La Canicule

Sigh….

If I had a pound for everyone that was jealous of this weather, then I’d have bought an air-conditioning unit quite frankly.

This heat is not fun, and we’re only just starting the worst few days of it. The reality is, I got up at 6.00am so the dogs could get a walk, and I could do some chores – so wardrobe has it’s second coat of Cornforth White, but it was already in the high twenties at 8.30am.

I have one dog, my chunky little Frenchy, that wants to be where I am, in the cool and the shade, and in front of the fan. I have our resident Spaniard however, that can’t get enough of it and I’m checking every 15 minutes to make sure she’s OK, but every time I do that, I let hot air into the house. She’s been forced inside now as it was 30 degrees by 10.00am, and because I know what’s good for her, and chasing lizards today, is definitely not. She’s stir crazy, but also knackered from an early walk so at least she’s too tired to do anything about it. FOR NOW.

Meanwhile, I’ve closed the shutters on the living room French Doors, and on our bedroom, so I’m existing in semi-twilight, like a mole woman, or one of those neon transparent things that lurk miles beneath the surface of the ocean in an Attenborough documentary. Incidentally, that is how I’d describe my usual skin-tone, transparent and gelatinous, with visible veins. I am Mrs Cellophane, and I’m melting here!

Yesterday, I opened the back kitchen window to let some cool air into the big house, and basically, a small lizard now lives under my skirting board. “Because France”. There was a short pursuit, a little gentle verbal persuasion on my part, but Nigel, as I’ve now named him (more than a passing Farage resemblance), was having none of it. I hope he’s ok in there, I don’t want to find his poor desiccated husk in a few months, I would be sad – lizard of course, not Farage.

Another joy of this weather, is that the farmers are cutting their meadows, drying and baling their cattle feed. This is a double edged sword, as all the tiny insects and small furry beasties are on the move, which brings in the smaller birds, but also the bigger birds of prey, I must have seen at least 30 beautiful birds of prey on our short dog walk the other night, many on the ground in the fields so we could get a good look. We’re from Yorkshire, and much as I’d like to be able to identify everything, they are referred to, by the generic term t’eagle. In a sentence for example, “Have you seen t’eagle”. You get the idea. The slight negative is, I swear the crickets are having an all night rave, complete with megaphones, (the green insect, and not Buddy Holly’s backing band – for clarification, and a topical reference for the kids there). I slept with ear plugs in last night, because they were so very loud. However, I am reminded that I would be regularly woken by sirens back in the UK, so you crack on little Jiminies, I won’t be complaining to the Maire just yet. I rescued one from the jaws of the Podenco earlier in the week, little horror, so much to chase and explore here for them, it’s lovely to see rescue dogs so happy, but please stop trying to maim things…..

Fan just out of shot

The polytunnel is thriving, so that’s great, the veg patch has gone to hell in a handcart with weeds because I’ve been so busy inside, and the grass! I want to cut it so badly but it’s too wet in the morning, and it’s too hot in the evening, so it’ll have to keep, but it’s really bugging me!!!

There is a lovely smell in the air, really comforting somehow, of toasty warm straw, and in the evening light, the fields look like spun silver. So there’s that.

I will be glad when this passes, it’s not for the likes of me this weather. I’m a giant freckle with hay fever, and a predisposition to heat rash, all things that were only useful to get you out of cross country running at school, and serve no helpful purpose in adulthood.

Ah well, back to it, Netflix won’t watch itself this afternoon…..

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