It’s past midsummer, a time usually in south-west France when our walks would be at dawn, to be home before the heat rises. This year there is no rush for us to be out of the door before breakfast. The weather is not usual. Certainly not for midsummer. It’s damp and overcast on many mornings, and while it’s not cool, it’s certainly several degrees below the norm.
Is this climate change? Probably. With record, deadly temperatures hitting parts of the world, it’s certainly worrying if I let myself think too much. I know this time last year we were sweltering in a heatwave – a canicule which is a wonderful sounding French word. I’m happy we don’t have that, but still, some weather stability would be welcome. Looking ahead at the forecast each week reminds us of many British summers before we moved to France. I almost feel nostalgic, almost.
A spate of daily thunderstorms distressed Cerise last week. We did our best to offer comfort as her eyes rolled widely, her pacing edged towards a frenzy and panting competed with thunderous crashes overhead. The last one, a few days ago saw her calmer. Perhaps frequency, comforting and supplying sausage nibbles might be teaching that a storm can be survived. Poor Cerise, of all the dogs, it has to be her who’s terrorised by a thing we can do nothing to stop or ease. The others, thankfully, are unfazed, and enjoy helping Cerise with the surprise buffet each storm brings.
Storms aside, this strange midsummer weather makes for comfortable days for the dogs. With long, leisurely walks, albeit with humans eyes to the sky dodging showers.
We are hoping to welcome some family here next month. However uncertainty persists and travel permissions between the UK and France are in constant flux. Planning is impossible so if we do enjoy time together, it will be a pleasant highlight of a summer that defies predictability.