01 June 2016

Still all wet

It's still raining. Not hard, but it's rain quand même. It's supposed to be damp and showery all day again today. If you think reading about our steady rain is getting tiresome at this point, you should try living through it. By late afternoon yesterday, we had collected another 30 millimeters of rain in the gauge. That's more than an inch, and our measurements put the rain total for May at nearly 200 millimeters — four times the normal amount. Most of that has fallen over the past week. The Accuweather site puts the total for May even higher. This is not how we hoped the growing season would begin — the garden is not even planted yet.

The hamlet called La Renaudière, outside Saint-Aignan-sur Cher

Yesterday the bread lady was about half an hour late. We waited and waited to hear her horn blow and see her little white van drive up. When she finally got here, Walt went down to get the baguette. He asked her about conditions down in the river valley and village center. Not good, she told him. Some roads were just barely passable because of flooding. Everything was moving very slowly. An hour north, around the city of Orléans, the A10 autoroute was closed by high waters late yesterday and about 400 people had to spend the night in an emergency shelter. Houses in a number of towns and villages up there were flooded.

A parcel of grapevines in the Renaudière vineyard (Appellation Touraine-Chenonceaux)

We'll get a better idea of what the situation is today. How high are the rivers? Are some roads still flooded? We hope not, because our plan is to drive up to Blois for lunch. That's a 50-mile round trip. Today is our 33rd anniversary as a couple, and we want to celebrate at least a little bit. Lunch in Blois, some shopping, etc. The Citroën's fuel tank is full, so we're good to go even if no pumps are dispensing diesel fuel. And then on Sunday I'm scheduled to take the train to Paris — striking railway workers willing. And the crick don't rise.

30 comments:

  1. Happy anniversary. Where are you going to have lunch? Le Relais d'Artémis, where we had your thirtieth?

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    1. No, nothing fancy. Just a pizza place in Blois that we like. It's in the neighborhood of the Asian grocery store that we also like for buying shrimp and okra.

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    2. Then, we might have a replay in a "fancier" restaurant SNCF willing?

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  2. Happy 33rd anniversary & enjoy lunch!

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  3. Happy 'niversary and stay dry....
    We are cut off from the village, now....better start building the raft, I suppose!

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    1. Are you cut off from Grand-P. or Petit-P., or both?

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    2. It was just Grand-P....but the waters are receeeeeeding verrrry s-l-o-w-l-y.....I guess because the land will all be draining into the valley....roads are now passable but you can see where a good amount of fields drained onto and across the road.
      But you can now begin to see where crops have been washed flat where thr water that is flowing through them still...was washing over them.

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  4. This kind of weather gave the big famines in 1693,1694,1709 and 1788.Fortunately it was another time !

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    1. Yes, it was a different time. We have different problems these days.

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  5. Have a great day in Blois. They had some flooding yesterday I know, so it could be interesting. The weather report shows Loir et Cher was worse hit than us, and I've never seen so much water here so I dread to think what it looks like up your way. The Val de la Claise Tourangelle is utterly awash. I was out yesterday with colleagues checking on orchids for a research project. We got completely saturated and had to go the long way round to get across two of the small rivers. There was water flowing across the road enough to stop us in a couple of places. The mayor of Chaumussay was having an impromptu meeting with concerned residents by the bridge when we arrived there at 2.30pm. My camera fogged up so I don't have very good photos of it unfortunately.

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    1. That does sound terrible. Glad the only damage you suffered was dampness and a foggy lens.

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  6. Sounds awful. We have some rays of sun between the downpours, but we're in the green zone.

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    1. It is awful, isn't it? But it could always be worse. I went out slopping around the vineyard this morning, trying not to slip on the slick clay fall. A big poplar tree has fallen on a parcel of vines at one spot. The roots must have just pulled up out of the soft wet ground, because we haven't had the kind of wind that it would normally take to blow down such a tree.

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  7. Hi Ken,
    Sorry to hear the problems you are all having from weather and strikes. Hope all improves soon. If you hear of flooding at Les Cochards campsite, could you please tell me as we are due there again in just over 2 weeks time and might have to think again. Do hope not - we love Saint-Aignan and the campsite. Sorry to bother you but I would appreciate it. X Sue

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    1. Haven't heard anything about Les Cochards, but I'll be out and about tomorrow so maybe I can drive over there. Everything should be back to normal in two weeks' time -- assuming it's not normal now.

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    2. More about les Cochards in tomorrow's post...

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  8. That is a good bit of rain. Happy anniversary. Do you think the US New Orleans is named after Orléans?

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    1. Yes, it is. La Nouvelle Orléans was named after the French city Orléans.

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  9. Happy Anniversary.
    I've been fascinated by your weather reports. Here in the west of Ireland we've had no rain for two weeks - I've been laden with watering cans every other evening. We're having a mini heatwave too, shorts and sandals everywhere. The vegetables went out in mid-April without a hint of night frosts since. Yet a friend is sitting in a Northern Italy thunderstorm (on a campsite) with nothing but rain forecast for the coming week. Strange times! John.
    John.

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    1. Thanks, John. Wow, a real heat wave in Ireland. Not here. It's not too cold now to plant the garden, it's just too wet. By the way, is your definition of a heat wave temperatures over 60F in the daytime?

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  10. Happy Anniversary Ken .
    Was watching France 2 last night and they mentioned that Loiret is in the Red zone. I remember that there is a blogger who used to comment on your blog - I believe it is DeeDee who lives there. It was sad to see how some didn't had time to secure the content of their homes and now they've lost all their belongings. Was wondering about St -Aignan and worried about you when they showed that the Centre was in the deepest blue section - that is where there have been lot of rain.
    Same thing is going on in some parts of Germany.

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    1. We saw some flooding around Blois today and we encountered small roads that were blocked off because of same. But we had not problems going about our business. I think the person who lives in the Loiret is Dedene. She's American. I've never met her in person.

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  11. Happy Anniversary, Ken and Walt! Glad you got out and hoping June brings normal weather.

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    1. Me too. But is this the "new normal"?

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  12. Happy Anniversary! Hope the pizza was lovely. Be sure to dry carefully so you don't get all mildew-y.
    The weather sounds similar to what we encountered in France in 1987 during Tony's sabbatical--rain, rain, rain.

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    1. We've lived through these summertime(or late spring) rainy spells before. One of the worst was in 2007, when we didn't have much of a summer at all until late August and September. Weeds completely took over the vegetable garden, and the tomatoes rotted on the vine. They was really nothing we could do about it.

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