A different kind of life continues

24 Nov

With the inability to travel we’ve found different ways to spend our time and perhaps got more done at home this year. Our only trip this year after confinement had been relaxed was to the Camargue. We saw the famous white horses and bulls and parts of France we’d not seen before. Not only is the Camargue famous for its horses and bulls but for the mosquitoes also. Unfortunately I get a strong allergic reaction to these bites and finishes the trip with 27 swollen bites all over my body. But it was worth it to see the animals and countryside.

We are very fortunate to live in a beautiful and rural area of France and even during confinement I was able to go out walking in the countryside with the dogs within a one kilometre radius. We are surrounded by woods and walks with rivers and valleys. On a clear morning we can even see the snow white tops of the Pyrénées from our road.

With high temperatures and lots of sunshine this year has been very good for grapes and sunflowers which surround our village. But it has also caused a lot of damage to trees around the area and many are now dead or dying and will need pruning this winter to prevent them falling onto the road.

My bees have also had a great year producing honey. In the spring I put on 2 extra floors onto the hive as they had already filled the nursery. By September both these extra floors were also full with honey. I restrict the queen to the nursery on the lower level with a queen excluder. This allows the worker bees through to store the honey but the queen is too big to get through. So she is able to continue to lays eggs but I’m able to harvest the honey without taking any babies. All I had to do was take away the top two floors leaving them with the full bottom level for the winter. We managed to extract enough honey to fill 50 jars. It tastes delicious. Thank you bees 🐝.

After confinement was relaxed I was able to recommence the English class in Montolieu so we decided to have a lesson in the garden. But the class in Carcassonne could not start again as they were held in the foyer which was closed for a longer period. But we restarts both in September but with many restrictions in place to ensure our safety. (Can we insert my avatar with my mask on here.)

Meanwhile in the UK aunt Jane died in her own home having survived COVID at the grand age of 107. What an interesting life she had.

Now we’re going to have to buy eggs for the first time in a long time as our rescue hens have finally stopped laying. They still try escaping occasionally though!

Living in the countryside it’s inevitable that we sometimes have little visitors. But with friendly traps I’ve managed to catch a whole family and relocate them further out in the countryside.

We’ve also had a few volunteers staying in the little house to help us with building and garden work thanks to Louise taking over coordinating them. So I’ve been free to do other things and not have close contact with them. The big garden is now recovering well after the flood 2 years ago and two of our seven terraces have been restructured and concrete repaired where necessary.

I had a painting 🧑‍🎨 lesson in February just before confinement so I’ve now set up my office in the garden as an artist studio.

Also this year I took Socks for some dog training sessions. He has improved but is still very active and loves to chase and hunt.

7 Responses to “A different kind of life continues”

  1. sheila temple-heald 11 October 2020 at 17:12 #

    Nice to hear how content you are xx

  2. Barbara Pullen 11 October 2020 at 19:52 #

    Nice to read through your blog and the need are doing so well sorry to hear about the chicken . I always enjoy seeing and hearing your new Barbara

  3. Barbara Pullen 11 October 2020 at 19:53 #

    Should be bees

  4. Suzanne Battershall 11 October 2020 at 21:37 #

    So lovely to hear from you both. Although you’ve been in lockdown you live in a beautiful place! So sorry to hear of Aunt Jane’s passing away. I hope life gets better for you all in France – we don’t know at the moment if we are coming or going!! Just waiting for another announcement from Boris tomorrow🙈🙈. We are both healthy and well – so are both my sisters and my daughter and her family, and my son and family! Fingers crossed we stay fit, well and healthy! Take care of each other and, once again, many thanks for your ‘blog’ best wishes from Suzanne and Bryan 😘😘🤞🤞

  5. malcolmhtrotter 13 October 2020 at 08:31 #

    Great to read your latest news.
    Thank you for sharing it.

  6. Eric 19 November 2020 at 23:13 #

    Hi Trisha and Richard..this is Eric and Rozanne..glad you are in good nick and surviving this awful year..love to hear from you..

    • Richard 19 November 2020 at 23:54 #

      Forgive us, but are you Eric and Roxanne Standing?

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