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It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Old Jul 22nd 2019, 8:35 am
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Default It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

So I was wondering how many of you here are coping/enjoying? our exceptional temperatures this year.
For those who are suffering, unfortunately the news is not good, as another exceptional heat-wave is expected from today until Friday, with temperatures forecast again as high as 40+ on Thursday. This was the case recently here in the SW. An all-time high of 46 degrees was recorded on 28 June in Verargues. This week most departments are on high alert - even in the north - as the mercury is expected to soar there too.

Those in the south are more used to the higher temperatures, with many having installed aircon years ago. Fortunately 3 years ago we did too, which especially this year we realise was a wise decision.
It must be extremely difficult for those touring in cavavans or under canvas, but the worst scenario must surely be for recently arrived expats, here for "a little more sun" after having sold up back in UK and now beginning to wonder if that was not a big mistake, given the uncomfortable conditions (multiple strikes notwithstanding) of exceptionally hot weather, water restrictions in over 70 departments, artisans cancelling/re-scheduling set appointments etc.

With ref to the last comment, we currently have a painter/decorator here for some exterior work on the house. We expected a call to say that it would be postponed until a change in the weather, but we had a call from his wife last evening asking if he could arrive at 7am to commence the work. Of course we agreed, and with an o.a.t. of 26deg he commenced at 7am precisely. I hasten to add that he's not French (not a Brit either), and doing a great job - currently on his 3rd litre of water in an effort to remain hydrated.
I'm told by a neighbour that even the chickens - French of course, have apparently gone on semi-strike, producing half the number of eggs that they normally would.

Being exceptionally cold blooded, and generally a hot-weather person - one of the many reasons having decided to settle in France, I'm not ashamed to admit that the exceptional temperatures seen so far this year have been overwhelming even for me, and kept me mainly indoors, even in the evenings rather than eating outside on the terrace. At least the mossies have less of a chance of feasting on the blood of an Englishman.
Weather-wise, I can't help wondering what surprises now may be in store for August. It's now 10:30 and already 31deg in the shade.......

Last edited by Tweedpipe; Jul 22nd 2019 at 8:37 am.
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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 1:30 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Not exactly enjoying it Tweedpipe but coping as we always do. We don't have aircon but we live in a very old house with very thick walls and additional insulation. what with that, our many ventilateurs and a strict regime of shutter-up during the day and open every aperture that is safe when the temperature falls and of course keeping up the liquid intake, we rarely, if ever feel we jus can't stand it.

Our hens can't really though.The ones who haven't keeled over have just stopped laying and there is not much left in the potager despite having a couple of wells. We do all the physical work first thing but the only really trying thing is supermarket shopping, Everyone has the same idea of getting there early but being France the shelves are empty because the stackers don't start until after the customers arrive. Timing becomes a fine art. Too early, empty shelves, too late, tourists everywhere.

My cooking changes dramatically in the hot months. I try to put the oven on as little as possible and in addition I deliberately had my kitchen made in the semi subterranean back of the house, north facing so it is the coolest place in the house apart from the cellar. I rarely even need a fan on in there as long as the oven isn't on for ages.

I too feel sorry for those poor deluded souls who came to live here "for the sunshine" especially the ones who have modern houses with poor insulation and great big picture windows all facing south because of the view.

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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

We bought a portable aircon last year which keeps the living area cooler during the day and the bedroom in the evening.
Going to bed in 18 deg is better than 28/30/32 deg.
I played golf this morning at 7.30 and there were loads of others shortly after.
I suspect that the course will be empty this afternoon.
Went to the supermarket this afternoon mainly for water; wine and beer.
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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 4:01 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Last August we were living on our steel sailboat on the Canal du Midi with few of the trees left for shade and diminishing depth of water under her keel. By the time we got to Trebes it was 38 degrees and finding a surprisingly vacant spot on a deep quayside we ran away to a hotel with aircon and a pool for a few days respite.
Now we have just got back to our home in Carcassonne from Agde, 38 degrees outside and the old stone built house is cool with no aircon, but a 20 euro fan from Weldom for company. We sleep in an attic room with an open velux and a fan on low. Luxury.
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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 4:27 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

At 7:15 this morning - unusual for me at that hour, I was out walking the (new to us) dog. Walking amongst the vineyards, and out into some open shrubland, I spotted a deer, the first I'd seen for ages. That made my morning, despite the heat! Not having a smartphone - and not wanting one, I'll take the camera tomorrow just in case I spot other interesting wildife at that early hour of the morning.
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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 4:31 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

I just don't like living with shutters closed during the day. I've just opened up the house now and there is a breeze waving through the house, lovely !

Btw Grannybunz, my house is new (5 years) and the whole side south facing is double or triple gliding doors. This means during the winter day time I don't need heating when the sun shines. I did this on purpose saying there are only 2 maybe 3 hot months in a year.
At night now I leave all doors open and leave a space under the volets open and the house cools down nicely. Today I closed all at 11.30 and the hottest it got in the house was 26 degrees, which is not bad. I have A/C but didn't need it.
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Old Jul 22nd 2019, 4:34 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Originally Posted by Tweedpipe View Post
At 7:15 this morning - unusual for me at that hour, I was out walking the (new to us) dog. Walking amongst the vineyards, and out into some open shrubland, I spotted a deer, the first I'd seen for ages. That made my morning, despite the heat! Not having a smartphone - and not wanting one, I'll take the camera tomorrow just in case I spot other interesting wildife at that early hour of the morning.
Me too I walk the dog just after my first coffee around 6.30 (ish) and love the fresh smell on the fields.
Coming back the dog goes to sleep and wakes up around dinner time
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Old Jul 23rd 2019, 8:07 am
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

I fear for the rider on Le Tour for the next couple of days.
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Old Jul 23rd 2019, 11:25 am
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Originally Posted by grannybunz View Post
I fear for the rider on Le Tour for the next couple of days.
A very good point, although they get some relief on the higher altitude stages.
With the current high temperatures, they apparently loose a litre of sweat/hr, and with water they can only rehydrate half a litre which compensates for only half their loss. Enriching the water with mineral salts and carbohydrates goes some way to re-establishing their condition.
Interesting article below.
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Old Jul 25th 2019, 4:31 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

As was forecast, it appears that today has been the hottest so far.
As Manuel would say, "He go crazy Mr Fawlty, he go craaaazy!"

Keep cool.


France 25/07/19: OAT 35deg (95F) in the shade 18:00hrs

France 25/07/19: OAT nudging 51deg (123F) at 18:00hrs. Crazy!

Last edited by Tweedpipe; Jul 25th 2019 at 4:33 pm.
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Old Jul 30th 2019, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

I think the most annoying and possibly dangerous feature of all these days of exceptional weather is the fact that the Meteo France has not been functioning for the last 10 days, It only came back today . There are a lot of very cross people in France at the moment .
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Old Jul 30th 2019, 2:10 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Originally Posted by grannybunz View Post
I think the most annoying and possibly dangerous feature of all these days of exceptional weather is the fact that the Meteo France has not been functioning for the last 10 days, It only came back today . There are a lot of very cross people in France at the moment .
Thanks for that, I'd given up on my Commune's météo after finding only the map of France during the canicule. It's still hot here, but reasonably so, with a nice Tramontane blowing.
I believe that farmers, and other professionals who need their local weather forecasts, have their own sources, not available to Monsieur Tout-le-Monde, but I agree that this lack of local météo for us lay(wo)men was extremely annoying....
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Old Jul 30th 2019, 6:30 pm
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Our farmers didn't have it either! They are spitting feathers!
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Old Jul 31st 2019, 8:20 am
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Amongst other sites I use https://www.tameteo.com/ which seems to be fairly accurate over the short term.
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Old Jul 31st 2019, 10:11 am
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Default Re: It Ain't Half Hot Mum!

Heatwaves can be quite useful...

https://www.thegwpf.com/europes-heat...st-in-history/
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