So after our bout of heavy rain that brought down a tree, added two new leaks to the roof and upset the animals as they could not go out, we then had the week of snow. Although we had seen the weather forecast and had provisioned accordingly, it was the increase in workload that came as a shock. I have done a fair bit of digging in my time (even up to stage 3 on the odd occasion for the military minded out there) but this has been a whole new ball game. It all started when I had to clear the drive so I could get the car downtown for its thermal tyres to be put on (to the amusement of the garage owner who had a line of cars all waiting for the same thing). Two hours in and with the dark descending I was half way down the hill cursing for having bought a house with a 500 mile long drive (thats what it felt like anyway). Next morning we woke up to a fresh blanket (more thick tog 50 duvet depth) of snow that made it look like we had done nothing the day before! Back to square one.
Drive done (eventually) it was time to move onto the next job, cleaning out the donkey shed and chicken house (if we could find them that is!!!). It took nearly an hour to dig a path up to the stable and the compost heap before we could then turn our attention to the cleaning. Ambrogio was quite content to watch all this work going on all around him (why did we have a working donkey????) but was not going to venture out into the snow for anything, even the chickens had a dose of common sense and opted to stay in. So it appears that it was only the educated humans who were out in the snow.
So that evening we retired to the warmth of a working fire (as if by magic it started working the day before Martine returned) and a glass of red, only to be disturbed by a loud roar as the snow which had now started to melt (typical) came off the roof right onto, yes you have guessed it, the path we had cleared that afternoon. If that was not bad enough we then had to dig through the snow as Tabs our cat had only just gone out the door and there was a possibility that she had been caught underneath! Luckily she had not. That particular mountain is still there as we could not face digging it out again.
Of course it was not all work,work, work as I did manage to get out with George to start the snowman before we were stopped by him deciding throwing snowballs at me whilst I was digging was much more fun. So no snowman pictures this time but no doubt we will get some more snow at some stage.
So for those back in the uK who thought we had it easy, we might have great summers here but boy do we pay for it in the winter.