January 24, 2009

French Weather- ouch!

I was going to write a lyrical little post this week called 'French Rain'.
You know the sort of thing I like to write, weather reports interspersed with nature observations, a little wistful, a little nostalgic.
Not tonight.
No photos, it's too dark.

What began in the dark this morning around 5 a.m. has subsided in the dark. I'm going to have a shot of armagnac and go to bed, exhausted but I wanted to let you know that when your read that little headline, just know that the reality was way worse.

The worst winds in French history (northern Spain got slammed too!), equivalent to a Category 2 hurricane, slammed the Atlantic coast. The BBC says it here but the map says it all; I live right where that red arrow to the east of Bordeaux is.

Lucky. We are very lucky as we have only minor damage. Lots of trees down. The roof of the chicken coop took flight, but the chooks didn't seem to bothered. A bucket of bird seed blew over and they just continued to harvest the spill. Bacon got to sleep in my cabin and sit with me on the couch under a blanket for comfort (his? or mine?), and Boudin (the barn cat) yowled her displeasure at the noise which sounded like a train coming down the canal. The new wheelhouse leaked as 100 mph winds drove the rain into the still unvarnished joints and the roof tarp disappeared over the side. There are days when I don't like living on a boat.

By late afternoon, the barometer starting rising, the clouds blew over revealing a weirdly blue sky and it is now blissfully still. Thank you. I have a good stock of candles and flashlights, oil for the lantern, and now the electricity came on.
I will sleep tonight. Peacefully.
Tomorrow, damage control.

Wish you were here.


jsl said...

We immediately thought about you when we heard the news. Sad about all the damage, but happy that you and Bacon are well and staying warm. As you said, tomorrow is another day. Stay well. Jeanette

Joanna said...

Kate, we have lived through two such storms, lost countless trees, no electricity for days/weeks on end, so my heart goes out to you.

I hope that the damage you find isn't too bad, and that it doesn't make you cry. I hope that you can keep dry, warm and fed while getting back to normal.


Kate Hill said...

thanks J & J. It is a better day and has thankfully held off raining until just now so La Julia has her winter hat back in place, the chickens are covered, and the road is cleared thanks to a passing tractor! Upside, I'll have lots of firewood for next year, plant some new trees and re-roof the garden shed into a small garden office.

jsl said...

Kate, if there is anyone who can handle life's problems with grace, it is you. We are in awe and inspired by your optimism. Love, J&T in Avila Beach

Loulou said...

I am so glad that you're ok and am happy to hear that you didn't suffer too much damage. I thought of you rocking in your boat (with Bacon of course!). Hope it helped you to sleep peacefully.

We just got power back last night. Very dramatic storm! Then Sunday was so beautiful and calm.

dorie said...

I'm so late getting to this news -- I only just heard of the storms this morning and only just read your post now. Thank goodness you're okay and that the damage was not catastrophic. Talk about weathering a storm ... xoDorie