If anyone saw me at BricoDepot (big DIY store)in Bordeaux yesterday….
I usually look better than that…
Living by candlelight is really not nearly as romantic and 'special' as one might think.
And I'd been up since 5am so I was a bit tired.
That 's when the girl dogs woke me.
Admittedly, a gale force wind and freezing rain pouring into the bedroom would have eventually woken us, even without the benefit of frantic paws on the face.
Having the huge, double-hinged windows that are standard in most of Europe allows you to throw them open and lean out… Like Juliet swooning over Romeo.
You can't do that with a window that needs to be cranked open or lifted up.
Of course, the likelihood of the latter type of window blowing open in a storm isn't very great, either.
Here's how it all played out…
I'm sleeping. There's a gentle nudge of a cold nose on my hand. I open my eyes and see a flash through the window.
Ah, a storm, I thought, listening to the wind and waiting for the thunder.
I saw another flash, heard no thunder, and realized that the power had just gone out.
I got smacked with a paw just as I heard a huge gust of wind. I started being grateful for sleeping in a big, stone house when the bedroom windows crashed open and the shutters came loose and started banging.
I struggled, unsuccessfully, to get the windows closed, leaning into the wind and rain.
Mon mari finally got out from our toasty bed, most reluctantly, leaned out and grabbed the shutters. After fastening them closed, he got the windows closed.
No more rain, but we'd never know if and when the sun came up.
By this time the wind was howling ever more ferociously, more doors and shutters were banging and the rain was pounding.
I went into the hall and there was a tornado coming up the stairs and the flat door into the attic was elevated about 3 inches.
I found a flashlight and made my way down the stairs, barefoot.
The main door was standing open, the wind howling and the rain blowing across the kitchen in sheets.
It took all of my strength and weight to get the door closed.
I turned away, and it crashed open again…
You get the picture….
Once we got everything as secure as we could, we went back to bed.
I had 2 terrified girl dogs trying to get in with me.
They were finally content with just leaning on the side of the bed…. But they were panting so hard it was like being in a cheap hotel…
You know (or maybe you don't…)the kind with a vibrating bed?
We gave up.
With no power at either house, we loaded up the girls and went shopping… for plumbing supplies and candles.
Dinner by candlelight is romantic.
Cooking by candlelight is a challenge.
Brushing one's teeth and getting dressed by candlelight is a pain in the ass.
We still have no power at Vlad's House.
Which means no hot water.
Which means no shower.
If you thought I looked bad yesterday…..
We do have power, again, at our house, so we can work today.
On a serious note: there has been a lot of local flooding but mainly vineyards, farm fields and low roads, plus a lot of trees down and sheds blown apart. Not having a television, we only know about what we have actually seen.
On a less serious note: the Travelers (gypsy camp) by the river are gone. We figure they saw the waters rising and headed off for drier, sunnier places.
Sautéed Shredded Brussels Sprouts with Leeks
12 – 15 medium Brussels sprouts
1/2 medium leek
1 tbs olive oil
Slice off stem end of sprouts and remove any wilted or damaged leaves. Thinly slice the sprouts, cutting the larger ones in half first. Trim the leek, cut in half the long way. Thinly slice half of the leek, reserving the rest for another use.
Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add leeks and sprouts. Sauté until they start to develop brown spots but are still crisp tender, about 7 minutes, stirring often. Remove, sprinkle with sea salt and serve.
Sweet and Sour Brussels Sprouts
12 – 16 Brussels sprouts
2 tsp olive oil
2 tbs water
2 tbs red wine vinegar
2 tbs brown sugar
Trim and quarter sprouts. Sauté in oil for 5 minutes. Add water, cover and simmer 5 minutes longer. Uncover and cook off water. Add vinegar and sugar, stir until sugar is dissolved and simmer 2 – 3 minutes longer.
Remember, the key to good Sprouts is to cook quickly!
And my new head light works great – for reading.
Not for chopping vegetables. There's a fingernail loose somewhere in last night's stew….
I just found the bright side!!!!
It's cold enough in the house that I don't have to worry about the food in the fridge spoiling!
See? One just has to look!