Saturday, 17 December 2011

Tempete (Storm) Joachim in France

Storm Joachim raged eastwards across France on Thursday night and Friday.  As I type this on Saturday morning, I gather that there are still 70,000 houses without power.  Eight departments are on orange alert for flood risk, and three for avalanche risk.  Rail and air transport pretty much came to a standstill, but it appears that they are back to normal today.

Yesterday, we had planned to go to a local village which has the biggest Christmas Fair in the area, to take photos for you all. I am sure it must have been cancelled; there was no way that they could have managed in the main street with the torrential rain and the gale force winds. Very sad, as I was so looking forward to it.

I thought you would be interested in a few photos taken locally of a small stream that runs through Vitrac St Vincent.  It is normally only 2-3 metres (7-10 feet) wide and very placid!


Thankfully we had no damage at home, but there are large branches and trees down in many places, and on the West coast many people had to be evacuated from their homes.  At least we do not have to water the garden with 60mm (about 2.5 inches) of rain overnight and during the morning!




Guess you could always swim to the picnic table which is on a mound.



This is where the stream passes between several houses so it has to remain narrow, but I wonder how much water has actually gone into these homes!
Finally the clouds break and lift, while the sun leaves a delicate pink tinge.

78 comments:

  1. Wow Diane ... glad you got off lightly - but if the pics you shoe are mild then I'd hate to see what the badly affected areas look like ...

    too bad about the Christmas Fair hey ... maybe they'll still do it sometime next week - weather permitting ...

    Are you hoping for a white Christmas?

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  2. Graham you are right we did get off lightly. I was really sad about the Christmas fair as I have been looking forward to it for weeks :(
    No we can do without a white Christmas. We live in the country with no salt trucks nearby. The best around here is the local farmers with blades on the tractors! We have enough food in the house to last a while but!! Diane

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  3. Have a lovely Christmas Diane no matter what the weather throws at you.

    Steve & Deb

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  4. Now I know who sent us the big storm we had in Rome this morning:) Hail, wind and rain, but luckily now it's gone, looks like it might become sunny. A big hug to you! Take care! Great pictures. Seems like you had a lot of water. I'm getting my boots ready, they're predicting more rain tomorrow.

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  5. So sad about the xmas fair! We had Halloween canceled here in October due to a storm that left everyone w/o power for days. Just isn't right when our holidays are interrupted...

    xoxo

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  6. Hi Diane, so pleased you are sounding much better :)

    I have been off-line for a while, laid low by flu and only just feeling a little better today. So, now Christmas starts here!!!

    Your photos of Vitrac were a shock - have been to the bric-a-brac there and as you say the river is normally little more than a stream. I do hope no-one had damage to their homes.

    Hope the Christmas Fair is re-arranged for next week x

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  7. So good that you still have power. Sounds like a miserable storm. We always have to worry about that in the summer during hurricane season...we have our box full of preperations ready to go. I guess they do that up north in the winter in case of a blizzard? At least you didn't have snow! So maybe they just had to postpone the fair. Hope you'll get to see it still.
    Stay warm and cozy Diane!

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  8. In the last years I think more and more we are changing (in bad) the Planet... And this is the terrible prize we are "winning" for this...

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  9. WOW, to so placid any more, this little stream!
    Here too we had a lot of strong Gusts of wind. The bird feeder didn't resist!
    The power was down for most of the after-noon and not Internet until early this morning!
    No too bad after all!
    Have a great evening, Diane!
    Cheers!

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  10. Sure hope the power comes back on for those folks and that you weren't terribly affected by the storms.

    I find it interesting when looking at the neighborhood homes so obviously taking on water from the flooding that I could be looking at, say, homes along the Mississippi River here in the states. Yet when you tour a small village I feel like I really am in France with you.

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  11. Hi Diane,
    Good to read that you are safe and sound after the storm. Good too that you weren't there alone. Hope all is soon back to normal.
    We are hoping that there will have been a good dump of snow in the Alps. Not much fun skiing on grass or worse still ice!

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  12. The flooding looks bad but at least there was no serious damage like in the Phillipnes.
    Stay safe.

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  13. Thanks Steve and Deb. We had our roof completely redone after a massive hail storm a few years back, so hopefully come what may we will stay dry. We wish you both all the best for Xmas and the New Year as well. Diane and Nigel

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  14. Francesca I had my boots out yesterday afternoon as we had an appointment to go to! Not a good day to drive around :( Take care and hope you do not too much bad weather. Diane

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  15. Sonia I was so looking forward to the fair. There is little time left now to reorganise it. Also the weather at the moment is unpredictable. Take care Diane

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  16. Jacky my thoughts are with you. I just hope that your flu does not end up like mine did. I saw the specialist again yesterday which was why we were out in the lousy weather. More tablets, and more x-rays to be done at the beginning of Feb when I have to see her again. She is pretty sure I have an infection of some sort in my lungs, but she does not understand why I am still coughing at night!
    You must have seen me at Vitrac, I sell at the Bric-a-Brac every year !!
    Get well soon. Hope you are OK for Christmas. Take care Diane

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  17. Lyndsey, I hope that they can reorganise the fair but time is short now and there are other things on. I plan on keeping as warm as possible :) You to Diane

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  18. These storms are quite scary aren't they? We had a heck of a storm on tuesday as well, much calmer today and no rain, we even had blue skys - wow - quite chilly now. Long may it last. Will they do the Christmas Fair before Christmas or is that it cancelled till next year - that would be a shame!

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  19. Andrea I agree, things are changing, but then they have all changed through millions of years. We may be speeding these changes up though!! Diane

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  20. Noushka as you say not so placid any more. I am glad we live on high ground! Sorry that you were without power. Our bird feeder got a bit sorry but it was easy to dry our today. Take care Diane x

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  21. Gaelyn I also hope that the people get power back quickly, not much fun in winter!!
    I am glad that you normally feel like you are in France when I do my tours :) Diane

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  22. Gaynor today was quite peaceful, but it will take a while for the floods to settle. I agree skiing without snow is not the way to plan it. We just hope the snow stays away from here. Keep well Diane

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  23. Boye By Red no it was nothing like the Philippines, that was terrible. We had people evacuated from there homes but I have not heard of any deaths to date. Diane

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  24. Ellie we were not in the worst place thankfully for this storm. Much more scary was the storm in 2009 when we had 15 tiles broken with hail and the house was flooded. I was also on my own! :( Diane

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  25. I had an old house on a river... when it overflowed everyone in the area was pumping like mad... but whoever built our place did it on a giant pile of rocks so we never got wet... it was scary though... watching the water get closer and closer and closer. Glad you are ok!!

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  26. Wow! What a storm for your first winter together in France. What a way to make it memorable for you. It's good you weren't affected by flooding into your home but it seems others were not as fortunate.

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  27. These look similar to the views after the flooding here in early September, although it was worse here in low lying areas. I gave my used appliances to a friend, who gave them to some people who had lost all in the floods; it felt good to help re-outfit several kitchens.

    Love your last cloud picture!

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  28. What a storm! Good to hear no one was hurt and that your house was ok. I hope you get to go to the Christmas markets later this week and looking forward to seeing your photos next time. Have a lovely French Christmas, Fifi

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  29. lostpastremembered the one thing Nigel has always said, we never buy near a river or low lying land. Where we are, we really had the tail end of the storm we got off very lightly. Diane

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  30. Joyful as I have just said above Nigel would never buy a house near a river or on low lying land. Sadly some people, especially on the West coast, did not come off so well. Diane

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  31. Marjie we were in a good area so far as the storm went. Many people closer to the coast did not come off very well. But it just shows what a small stream is capable of when there is a lot of rain around! Keep well Diane

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  32. Fifi I have not seen any more Christmas markets advertised, that one was the biggest, or supposed to be, in our area. I will keep my eyes and ears open though. You have a good Xmas in Brisbane, one of my favourite towns that I have been to in Ozz. Hope you do not get floods again there. Keep well Diane

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  33. Hi Diane .. pity about the Christmas market - bet the traders were looking for a bumper day .. but am quite glad that storm didn't hit the UK ..

    Swollen rivers .. all around the world the weather is changing ..

    I'm glad you have nothing to worry about re repairs .. have a good Christmas and New Year .. and hope the infection can be fully doused out ready for a happy 2012 .. cheers Hilary

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  34. Glad that you managed to avoid any mishaps! The weather has been awful recently...it was only a couple of weeks ago that Scotland was really badly hit by storms!

    C x

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  35. Ireland too has been hard hit by high winds and terribly cold weather. In Cork, due to the proximity of the river the pavements are treacherous with ice.

    As always, I have to thank you for sharing your photos with us. I pore over each one of them. How I would like to go there and paint one day :)

    Have a wonderful Christmas you and Nigel, in your first Christmas in your new home. I hope your cough has gone away completely by now. XX

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  36. These types of storms are frightening..You just never know what will happen..A calm little stream becomes a dangerous body of water..The ocean is down the road from us and I am glad we are not near it..We have a lot of flooding in the spring..true my basement takes a hit, but that is from the ground..
    Hope all is well with you..read in another post you did see the doctor..this cough business is crazy..George/CaraRose are still at it..but not at night..Sorry yours is still going on at night, very discouraging.
    Keeping you in my thoughts..
    Have a happy day..xoCarolyn

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  37. I am happy to hear you didn't have any damage to your home. Stay dry!

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  38. Dear Diane, I'm sorry to hear about the storm, thankfully it didn't damage your property or harmed you. I can relate to your fears. Looking at the pictures they reminded me of the scenes from hurricane Irene. I shudder every time I see a body of water on land...
    How is your cough lately? Hope all is well with you. Take care

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  39. Hilary I was really sad about the Christmas market but.....
    You are so right the weather is changing world wide.
    As for me I saw the specialist on Friday again. More tablets, and more x-rays to be done in early Feb when I see her again!! I do feel better though and I am coughing less. Diane

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  40. Carol the weather changes world wide are not easy to follow. There has been so many disasters over the last few years. Take care Diane

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  41. Hello Diane:
    Gosh, what terrible weather you are experiencing at the moment, Diane. These storms can be so very frightening as they appear so rapidly and do cause tremendous damage. We are glad you are safe and warm.

    We are sure that you must have been disappointed to have missed the Christmas market since these events really do get one into the Christmas spirit.

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  42. Dolly please be careful with icy pavements, I know just how easy it is to slide out of control and how painful it can be!

    I am sure you will be here one day and I look forward to seeing you work.

    I wish the cough had gone but I saw the specialist again yesterday. She cannot understand why I am still coughing so much at night. I left with more tablets and I see her again early Feb with more x-rays.

    Hope you also have a great Christmas, keep well Diane

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  43. Carolyn, yes water is beautiful when it is calm but when it is angry it is very destructive.

    I am glad that George and CaraRose do not have a problem at night. I get up to greet the next day feeling like a zombie. I now have to wait until Feb before I visit the specialist again with fresh x-rays. Meanwhile I continue to rattle with all the tablets!

    Have a great Christmas Diane

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  44. chcmichel we had our big storm that flooded the house in 2009, 15 roof tiles broken with hail. We have since had the roof completely redone so I hope we do not experience a night like that again. I was also alone so it was quite scary. Diane

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  45. Marco Pasho, yes thankfully we had no problems at home, but angry water is not nice!
    The cough continues at night, more tablets and more x-rays before my next visit to the specialist in Feb.

    Take care and have a great Christmas. Diane

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  46. Jane and Lance the weather has been remarkably mild this winter so far. This storm arrived to make up for it all I suspect! We also had our first frost this morning, I had to go and remove the solid ice in the bird bath!

    The market was very sad, it was the one thing that I thought would make me feel christmassy and I had been looking forward to it for weeks. Oh well. Keep well Diane

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  47. La nature reste imprévisible et bien plus forte que nous!
    Je vous souhaite à vous et à votre famille des belles fêtes de fin d'annéé! Amicalement. Lucie

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  48. wow that is incredible. interesting to see what the weather is doing across the world!

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  49. Lucie c'était notre deuxième expérience de très mauvais temps ici en Charente.
    Il y a deux ans, nous avons eu une grande diverse de grêle, qu’a endommagé aussi beaucoup des vignes autour de Cognac.

    Joyeux Noël. Tous nos meilleurs vœux de santé et de prospérité pour l'année 2010. Amicalement Diane

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  50. Muppy the whole world appears to be changing weather-wise. It makes one wonder what will happen next!! Diane

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  51. Ça a été effectivement une sacrée tempête.
    A très bientôt

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  52. Oh no, glad you are not affected much Diane. A storm just passed Philippines and killed more than 600 local residents.

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  53. enjoy the borscht sorry to hear about the storm and hope the water resedes soon Merry Christmas

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  54. Nadji. Merci pour votre commentaire. Joyeux Noël. Tous nos meilleurs vœux de santé et de prospérité pour l'année 2010. A bientôt. Diane

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  55. chubskulit we have been watching the news on the Philippines and it really is a disaster there. I feel so sad for the families involved. Diane

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  56. I am certain we will enjoy the soup:) Happy Christmas to you as well. Diane

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  57. My dear friend Diane
    Your Christmas blog, is very beautiful and many thanks for your wishes!
    I am very sorry for the bad weather.
    I hope not to happen again, to go to the Christmas market.
    Sorry to still struggling with a cough. I hope to pass shortly.
    But do not go out in the cold.
    I wish you to be well and have Happy Christmas!
    Many greetings and kisses

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  58. Oh my word....Dianne.....That looks like some kind of storm...I'm glad you are o.k.

    Here is wishing you and your family a joyous holiday season.

    xo

    Jo

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  59. Diane,

    What an ordeal! I'm so glad to read you weren't put into too much danger or that your property wasn't damaged.

    It's so good to see you again. It's taken me some time managing being sick so often (with uterine tumors) and motherhood while still trying to cook, but I've finally figured I just have to forge through.

    I miss it so much...and connecting with friends far and wide.

    My husband and I have gone back and forth on whether we would go to Paris to be close to his Mom and Barrett can be near his only grandparent, or we would go to Canada, because it's close to the U.S. and we can be some place where English and French are spoken. When I became sick during my pregnancy, it was clear I couldn't travel so far, like to France. We know for sure we don't intend to stay in the U.S. and are hoping Canada will be a viable option over the next year.

    I hope the weather has cleared and everyone is safe.
    How are you?

    I wish you a very blessed and happy holiday. May your gift be joy and your joy be abundant! <3

    --Terrianne

    P.S. The jam is scrumptious! =)

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  60. So glad your home was not affected by the floods. Take care my friend. Merry Christmas.

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  61. Thanks God Diane you are OK I dont have idea about this, was a tremendous storm, hope all be nice now dear Diane, send you huggs and have a nice Christmas:)

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  62. Bad storm. Glad you all are alright.

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  63. What a shame that you missed the Christmas fair. It sounds lovely! Europe has lots of things like that. Hopefully there's another one you can catch before Noel arrives.

    As for the rain, looks like it caused a lot of havoc! Stay well and Merry Christmas

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  64. Magda my Christmas blog is yet to come :) watch this space. The cough is getting better but it is very slow!! Take care Diane

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  65. Jo you have a great Christmas, and I wish you all the very best for the New Year. Diane

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  66. Ree it is so good to hear from you again. I am sorry that you have not been well but you also did not have an easy pregnancy.

    Thanks for all your news and update, Canada may be good for you, but I was hoping that it would be Paris so I may get to meet you. So long as Barrett grown up fluent in French and English so he can speak to his grand parents :) I met a 4 year old the other week who was speaking to me in perfect English, she then spoke to her mother in Dutch and then to her father in French. Wish I could have learnt like that!

    Take care and have a great Christmas and a healthy 2012. Diane

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  67. kclily good news that you are back at your computer, I really hope that Christmas goes well for you and that you are feeling up to all the family excitement. Wishing you all the very best Diane

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  68. Christine's Pantry, all well here, wishing you a Happy Christmas and a wonderful 2012. Diane

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  69. Gloria it is very peaceful here now though we have a lot of drizzle! Have a fantastic Christmas and all the best for 2012. Diane

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  70. Brittany I was really sorry about the fair and the weather has been pretty damp ever since so... Have a great Xmas and hope that 2012 is a good one for you. Diane

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  71. the storm must be such a terrible thing to happen around this time, gla d to know everyone was safe.

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  72. I`m really astounded at the number of natural disasters in France. It seems that such things do happen from time to time all over the world, testing our strength.

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  73. Lena, France was lucky this time, sadly the Philippines did not have it very good. Diane

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  74. Olga when I first came here I was amazed at the huge storms we get. I thought that I had seen massive storms in Africa, but I think some here are far worse. There are so many disasters around the world it is scary. Nature can be so beautiful. but when angry so destructive. Diane

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  75. We lost our pig ark during the night, but a farmer returned it the next day, the neighbours green house is bent and glassless, no damage here at Half Acre to any buildings, although we had to sleep downstairs because it was so noisy in the grenier.

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  76. Paula and Roz, presumably the pigs were OK! Nigel could not sleep because of the velox window, but with my cough I am in the spare room and only the coughing kept me awake :)) Diane

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  77. How dreadful this must have been. The water looks fearsome. I hope no one was hurt during the storm. Property can be repaired, but it is a terrible time of year for a storm like this to occur. I hope you are warm and dry. Blessings...Mary

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  78. Mary it was not really much fun! We are high so no problems from the water. Just the odd branch came down, but we were lucky. Diane

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