Monday, 28 January 2008

What a Day

You know the saying, ‘It never rains but it pours’, well; I sometimes feel that it is describing my life at the moment.

Today started reasonably well, the planned trip into Villeneuve was only delayed half an hour while I cleared the car windscreen of ice. The trip was a bit slower than usual as visibility in the freezing fog was down to 20 metres in places but overall no problem. Exchanged the pump with no problem and got a lovely apology from the owner. All going well so far.

I then went to Gamm Vert (a townies version of the agricultural merchants Terres du Sud but I get store points on the same things they have in Terre du Sud – makes sense to me). I needed to go there to get a matching shelf to the ones I purchased before Christmas. To my great surprise they had the new stock in. Then over to the display of seed potatoes, well most of the variety names are completely different to the ones in the UK but, never fear, I’d downloaded a list of French potato varieties along with their characteristics. Hum, they still had varieties that weren’t on my list but never mind I decided on 3 varieties to try - Charlotte, Elodie and Rosabelle. I looked at and wondered about the purple fleshed variety they had, but didn’t find the plate of purple mash they showed on the front of the packet at all appealing, so gave it a miss. I then went looking for garlic but they only had the white variety.

From there it was back home and time to look at wiring the pump. Thank goodness my Internet connection was not playing up. I now know what L1, L2, L3 and U1, V1, W1 refer to plus the wire colour codes too.* Then it was down to the pump house to install it. After a bit of jiggling, wriggling and finally hitting it with the pipe wrench, everything mechanical fitted together. The wire too eventually succumbed to what I wanted it to do and bent round all the nearly inaccessible places it had to and was wired into the mains. Back to the house to switch on the mains power. NO bang, no shorting out of anything so back to the pump house to switch on the pump. It started and even turned in the right direction and proceeded to fill the tank with air.

I was wondering if this was the time to start crying. I’d primed the pump and the pipe to the tank but no water was arriving, then I thought to open the tap on the tank. This resulted in no back pressure and the pump was able to draw the air lock up from the pipe from the well. Yes I have water again, and yes I am over the moon. I have loads of cleaning to catch up with; the water I was getting from friends was far to precious to fritter away on that.

Also this afternoon Ann and I found the local tree nursery and I’m picking up the rest of the trees I want tomorrow, so the first stage of the wood is progressing too. On the way back from the nursery I was able to get the garlic I wanted, a purple type and a pink type. So all in all a very successful day.

So what about the 'it pours' bit? Well after taking the photograph of the potatoes and garlic (and don’t you just love my kitchen floor), I came to the computer to download the image and write the blog. For some reason, and I’ve no idea what it was other than sixth sense, I went back to the kitchen to find the floor under an inch of water. Something I’d put in the dishwasher had managed to block the filter and it responded by continually pumping water out of the door seal. It’s enough to drive you to drink.

*L1 L2 L3 refer to the 3 phases, U1 V1 W1 refers to the 3 windings on the motor and the colours for L1 L2 L3 here in Europe are Brown, Black and Grey respectively.

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