52 postcards - week 36, Storm brewing

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by the weather; I’m British, it’s in my DNA! From opening the curtains in the morning, to checking one of the numerous apps I have on my phone and tablet, I like to know what the weather will or might do. Living on the south coast of England, the weather is heavily influenced by the sea. It’s very often windy here, the prevailing wind whooshes along the south coast from the west. When I used to cycle to work, the westerly was always my friend, as it would blow me into work. The downside of this, was more often than not, the wind would steadily increase during the day, and be blowing a gale into my face by the time it was to cycle home.

Going to a place where the weather is influenced not by the sea, but by the mountains, brings a whole different set of weather patterns. In early September, I spent two weeks in the northern foothills of the French Pyrenées. The gîte where we stayed had a grandstand view of the mountains. At dawn the mountains and clouds were tinged with a cold blue pink as the sun rose; in the evening they are bathed in a warm pink glow as the sun set. Being in the south of France the temperatures were hot. Not a dry heat, but an energy sapping humid heat. The heat and humidity build over the days. Eventually the energy and humidity are released in often spectacular thunderstorms. The weekend we arrived, the storms were building and we watched as the thunderclouds built over the distant mountains. Weather watching on the covered veranda of the gîte with a glass of local wine became a daily routine. A good routine.

The recipients for week 36’s postcard are the owners of the gîte where this image was made. Marianne and Brian made the permanent move to France from the UK a few years ago. The gîte and home they have converted are beautiful as you can see on their website.