Tuesday, July 05, 2022

The Opposite of Sun Worship

 It gets hot in the south of France. Summer days can soar into the 90s or even 100 Fahrenheit; that's in the 30s Celsius. 

And like most people in France, we don't have air conditioning. We get only a few moments of smugness as we consider that we aren't harming the environment, before the sweat wipes away that do-gooding feeling. 

So how do we stay cool in the summer? It's about 75 degrees Fahrenheit (23 C) inside our thick- walled house, but that's only because we have learned how to keep it cool. 

Usually, we throw open the shutters on our windows in the morning to embrace the sun, 

The sun peaks over the mountains in the morning.

but in summer, I prop the wooden shutters open like a tent rather than opening them fully. 

The muted light filters in and the air can circulate

Sometimes I close the windows as well. At night, I do the opposite, I throw the shutters open, allowing the light from nearby street lights to fill the bedroom as the cool air filters through our lace curtains. 

The sun peeping through the guest bedroom window

The most important thing is to protect the indoors from the strong sunshine. We also keep the fans running -- overhead fans in the bedrooms and office. Standing floor fans in the downstairs rooms. 

Even with our shutter method, the upstairs is decidedly warmer than the downstairs by evening, but once the sun goes down, the shutters are opened and I place a fan in front of the window to suck in the cooler air. 

At night, the temperature has been dropping down to 16 or 17 Celsius, in the 60s Fahrenheit. That gives the house a chance to cool off before the next day's heat assault. 

Once you get used to it, it doesn't seem so hard to live without air conditioning. After all, we've already adapted to only run the dishwasher and the washing machine at night when the electricity prices are lower. 

Sunday, July 03, 2022

A Moment in Time

For the past six months, I’ve taken a picture on the last day of each month of the bridge and river on my way home from a walk or run. 
Sunny January but the trees that aren't conifers are bare

February things began to sprout

March and the mountains start to look green

April going out like a lion with rain

In May the river was lined with flowers

This is a sad June picture, overcast and the water severely down,
 but some rain is predicted this week

This last picture is the view from the bridge, back toward where I usually shoot the picture. The road isn't really visible, but you can see the cemetery that borders the road. 

On July 2, I was walking across the bridge and caught this fisherman in action. 

I won't get to take pictures on the last day of the month for the next few months. We're headed back to the States to spend some time with Mom and Dad. Dad is freshly out of the hospital and we have no reason not to go help out, except that we may miss some parties, and even I'm not that selfish. 
Hopefully, we'll get to enjoy the summer fêtes in France next year. 
This year though, we'll get to enjoy August in Florida. 

Cockadoodle Doo or Cocorico?

 We stood in the middle of the road, having walked together 13 miles that day and Claudine grasped my forearm. "Mais non! It doesn'...