December 2017: the month that ran away with itself

Saturday 2 December

snowed under!  No rain, no … but snow!
Ahmed is pruning.  He begins this gargantuan task only when the last leaves have fallen from the vines .
“It’s good’” he says, “it’s so good for the soil when it snows.  It’s like a fertiliser.  I don’t know why, but it is.”
And then to emphasise the point: “Everyone knows that.  Or all the old people do, anyway .”
And he’s right.  Snow captures the nitrogen in the air, which slowly seeps into the soil as it melts.  Ahmed doesn’t need an explanation, observation is good enough for him.  “The lawn is always green after snow …” he says.
And snow is the blanket protecting the ground from freezing, so that insect and plant life can continue on happily undisturbed, below.
Come to think of it, there’s everything good about snow.
Excepting that it’s not rain.
Friday December 8
Our brand-new importer in Rumania hurriedly placed a second order yesterday, in as many months.  The wine is doing well.  A truck is dispatched … follows its GPS, and ends up today in a ditch down the road  – and off the road.  Which is what happens if you don’t read the street signs and follow your GPS instead, into unchartered  truck-unfriendly territory.
Jan and Jan-Ailbe spend the entire afternoon trying to help the driver out.  He’s laconic.
”Always happen in Rumania” he says phlegmatically.
“Stay here” we say, “we’ll phone around and find someone to pull you out.”
“I stay.  I not go no where”, he says ruefully: “I cannot go no where”.
We’re used to hassled truckies who want to load up and clear out in two seconds flat.  A bit like us, wanting the rain to come and fall, right now.  Maybe we should all take a lesson from this guy, who seems quite happy kicking his heels while the gathering crowd tries to work out how to dislodge  tens of  tons of intractable  truck.
Though of course, it would have been better not have driven the truck off the road in the first place.
Anyway, rain forecast for tonight – but the sky looks more like snow.
Sunday December 10
Rain!  Hooray !!
At last count, 17 whole mL’s, falling gently, steadily, and effectively.  The most rain we’ve had in  months and months  …
Monday December 11
KLMwindowNow we’re up to 27 mLs.
Drizzle has blanked out our view, but that’s OK.  A nice man comes by, clutching this month’s Terre de Vins and last month’s menu from the KLM Business Class.  He met our three Chenin blanc wines through the former and Odyssée, the chardonnay,  through the latter.  Both have pictures showing our splendid Pyreneen skyline, but alas, it is not there.
To be continued ….