Sunday, February 1, 2015

What we do when the electricity is off!


Friday 29 January 2015

Rain followed by lots more rain
9 degrees

Woke at various times before it got light.  Electricity still off so went back to sleep until just after nine am.  OH leaped out of bed and announced we would go down town and work in the rental units.  Oh joy.   He found the primus stove and made surprisingly large flames leap out of it, and then had to take it outside and throw water on it.  Eventually we had some tea and set off on the twig strewn roads.  The river was in spate and frothed with spume and branches.

I went to the nearest bread shop.  The door was locked and there were lots of lovely looking croissants on the shelves.  I knocked and knocked and the woman eventually came to the door and said she didn't work on Fridays and no I couldn't have any croissants.  She has the worst bread in town but her croissants are really substantial.  Went elsewhere and was served by someone with a strange accent.  We had trouble understanding one another. 

Spent morning scrubbing and de-plastering floor in new rental unit.  The smell from the nearby restaurant was rich and our stomachs rumbled all morning.  

Back home for lunch and the electricity was still off so we had sandwiches and watched the fire.  We did have firelighters.  On a high shelf that a shortie like me couldn't see.  The rain lashed down and the cars look surprisingly clean.

Back down town and I couldn't get in touch with the person whose house I was meant to be seeing at 3 pm so I drove to village mid way between home and my 4.30 appointment and went in a bar where, surprisingly, they had both electricity and wifi.  Enjoyed a hot chocolate and caught up with emails.   Am having enquiries from people who want to know chapter and verse about properties without actually wanting to talk on the phone or tell me anything about their project.  I could spend my whole time sending information to people who don't have any intention of buying.  Communication is a two way thing.

My 4.30 appointment was with an absolutely adorable couple whose house I used to have on sale last year.  Their house is 18th century and has wonderful large pebble walls, a separate apartment, a swimming pool.  It is elegant and stylish.  It is also on the side of a very, very busy road.  Lorries rumble past constantly.  They say they really appreciated my efforts last year and would like to try again this one.  We have tea and the most lovely chocolate biscuits and have a long chat and catch up.  They say that the French aren't given to laughing spontaneously and smiling all the time.  I say it is a very British thing.  We kiss and I head off to the doctor's.

My GP is an absolute pearl.  He looks like a South American rebel with his long wildly curly hair tied back in a pony tail and his goatee beard.  He has grown gaunt over the years as his hours have increased and he has gone through various relationships and has developed a medical condition which must take its toll on him.  He works from 8 am to 9 pm and doesn't take a break.  He is warm and sympathetic and never looks at his watch.  You may have to wait some time in the waiting room but once you are in front of him, you can spend as long as you need.  Some people abuse this and the people in the waiting room start telling one another about their maladies and playing illness oneupmanship.  If you want to tell him that someone is driving you mad or that you are stressed to within an inch of your life, he is there for you.  And you can get to see him the same day as you ring up.  

Get back home eventually and manage to eat before the electricity goes off again.   I fiddle with a little radio, trying to get something interesting on shortwave and OH unearths an old radio from the cupboard, discovers the batteries have leaked, and decides to take it apart.  Radios have surprisingly complicated innards.  He puts it back together and it doesn't work.  He hits it a bit and then puts it by the fire to 'dry out'.  It still doesn't work.   I remember the pod casts on my phone and we listen to Americana, a wonderful series which has been axed.

At 9.30 the electricity comes back on and oh joy, we get to watch the rest of the Herzog film. Suffice to say, it ended VERY badly.  And there were a lot of monkeys.