If the English summer can be defined as two nice days and a thunderstorm, then the Bordeaux summer largely consists of perhaps 30 English summers repeated from about July to September. Thunderstorms provide much entertainment but they are also the bane of our lives.
Yesterday at about 6 Patricia announced that the newspaper said the Bordeaux parks would close at 8pm because of the impending storm. So at about 7 or so we went out and prepared the balcony. This involves turning a wooden bench and table upside down and moving all our plants to the shelter of the windward wall. The wind strikes the wall and the plants are sheltered on the other side. I originally left our splendid little passionflower cutting on the balcony wall where it was starting to cling to the balcony railings, promising ravishing flowers perhaps next year, but I had to think again and move it when the wind started whipping it about like a freed garden hose.
The storm struck at 8 and was the fully garnished kind - wind, lightning, thunder and, briefly, torrential rain. It was relatively calm when we went to bed, but at about 4am we were woken again by thunder and wave upon wave of tighning passing overhead. The balcony was as prepared as it can be so we wer efree of concern, but we still heard ominous metallic noises coming from somewhere in the building site that is the future Jardins de l'Ars.
Today the storm alert is still in force but it is calm and, thankfully, cooler. Last night the temperature never dropped below about 22°C and though we had our windows open and the shutter slits open, not much air passes through even with stormy winds.
Still, we may be at the end of this current heatwave. Some cooler evenings will be very welcome!