Hail Stones In the Pyrenees

Thought I’d digress from the current flow and describe an event, yesterday. Imagine the scene: sunshine, reading Montaigne on the recliner, rearing cliffs behind me with crows and woodpeckers creating a drum rhythm. A blackbird chortling solos above my head on the pear tree. All hot and humid and very south of France. Ten minutes later a towering black cloud breasts the peak of Canigou. Indoors I wander, taking stuff from the washing line on my way. Ten minutes more and hell unleashes its fury and a Mordor darkness descends. Giant hailstones crash and crush, stripping the fruit trees and the tomato plants, holing the parasol canopy, dimpling the metal on the car roof and bonnet, destroying the plastic laundry basket. A great brown river rushes down the road past the house carrying stones and tree branches. Everywhere is covered in white cobblestones.
Later I hear that cars have been junked, Velux roof lights shattered and bedrooms filled with ice.

Here’s a bit of doggerel on the event:

Twas a normal day in Ol’ Casteil
The sun it was a shining
Then all went black
The lightning crack’d
And crumbled heaven’s lining…


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