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Hailstones as a flood defence?

Ever had your front door blocked by hailstones? Last night made a fair attempt out side my cottage!

Landscape painting  that is, painting plien aire (out doors)  is currently quite a challenge with temperatures often up to the mid 30’s C in the shade.   Hailstones_IMG_5824_wp.jpg

 A hot summer here in the Tarn around Gaillac and Albi, at least by English standards of summer weather.

Rain here is mostly at night and usually about once in 10 nights or less, that’s the good news.

The bad news is is it is often in the form of violent squalls which the locals call storms.

Last night we had a good example of such a squall.

For about an hour winds gusted up to 60 m.p.h. and hail whitened the ground before heavy rain turned my street into a river while hail beat against the front door leaving a 6″ “escarpment” of hailstones to greet my opening the door!

My terrace / veranda which has no scuppers became a paddling pool and part of the basement flooded due to a leaking Veranda. You can get and idea of the drama when I say, branches of trees and in a few cases whole trees were knocked down.

The favourite but not exclusive pattern of the weather here in summer is it gets progressively hotter each day until thunder storms role out from the Pyrenees mountains 100 ish miles away.

Many of my friends think this far inland is a strange plave to find a marine painting specialist. 

Still, this is a small price to pay for living in such beautiful sunny light where I can work more effectively with colours, eat. drink and socialise more than I ever did in England  and live with such amiable people.