[][1]The temperature hasn’t gone above minus 5 for four days now. It’s certainly the longest cold snap we’ve had, although not the snowiest. (That was January 2007.) And we’ve had problems. Our pipes froze on Friday night so on Saturday Chris was hacking holes in the plasterboard to locate the source of the problem. I was hair-drying one set of pipes while Chris set the electric fan heater up to warm up another. We turned on the halogen floodlights in the loft to heat that up.

So of course there was no running water. Thank goodness that we have the gite. We were able to use the loo over there, and do the washing up and washing too. This morning we’ve got most of the pipes freed up. However, the kitchen sink isn’t draining outside – but into the bath! Clearly a bit more ice to deal with somewhere.

The fun thing about the snow is all the animal tracks we find in the mornings. Here are some ragondin (Coypu) tracks that we spotted on the big lake.

Ragondin tracks


Ragondin or Coypu

Ragondin or Coypu

rillettes de Ragondin

Best thing for Ragondin from ragondin.com

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The animals are all snug and cosy. Denis the llama and Maisy the goat are getting on well, but Oscar is being a little bit henpecked by the females. He’ll survive! The cats are sneaking inside more and more often! As I type this, Treacle is sitting on my lap, having a good wash. She’s not that impressed with the snow. Nessie is as happy as ever.

The children are happy as there won’t be any school buses running tomorrow. Thank goodness – the roads round here are certainly not safe. We’ll have to wait and see what comes along weather-wise this week. It’s meant to warm up mid-week by a degree or two, but I’ll believe it when it happens.

[1]: http://www.bloginfrance.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/frozenpipes.jpg