Maybe it's the loneliness as much as the wet weather that's making this seem like a very long winter. Out of the kitchen window, we can see (or almost see) five houses strung out along the road that goes down toward the village. Doesn't it look calm and quiet? That's because it is.
Sunrise out the kitchen window
All these houses, including the one directly in our line of sight, are empty at this time of year. The owner of one house died last summer. Another house has owners who live most of the time in Blois, and still another has owners who spend most of the winter in their apartment in the Paris suburbs.. A fourth house is empty and for sale. And the fifth is also owned by people who live in the Paris area.
Sepia-toned views seem more realistic than color photos this winter.
The house we see out our back windows is also empty in wintertime. In the photo above, the femme de ménage (the cleaning woman) has parked her car in the yard across the street. She comes in to clean two mornings a week, even though the house is empty and has been since September. I can't imagine what she does over there for eight hours a week.