Winter Cover

During the summer months we let out our holiday cottages. The French call them gites and they face a swimming pool where children splash happily and adults snooze in the sun.

Summer's version!

But now that autumn’s  here and the avenue  is lined with leaves we are faced with the annual challenge of dragging over the winter cover – a great rubbery beast measuring 10m x 5m.This has in the past been met with fiasco.

The first year my husband thought he could tether it to the surrounding fence with those elastic cords you use to hold down debris in the wheel barrow.  The first windy day it transformed itself into a parachute and was ready to float off, fence attached.

Year 2 we enlisted friends and tried to drag it lengthways from one end of the pool to the other. With a sense of inevitability we watched it sink under water, pulling us with it.

Now of course we’re dab hands at it – yanking it across sideways and tethering it to rods in the concrete. So today we fished out seven crayfish before we began, hefted the summer cover out of the way and spread it out confidently on the paving stones. How come by the time we finished the men, though exhausted, were dry while we women looked like we’d been competing in a wet T shirt contest?

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3 Responses to Winter Cover

  1. Hazel Eggleton says:

    I’m intrigued, Paddy, about where the seven crayfish came from…..? My experience of a swimming pool in a French gite was in the Aveyron, during a particularly hot summer and a drought. We were woken up at six am one morning by the sound of splashing. Cursing our friends for swimming at such an ungodly hour, we looked out of the window to see a dozen ducks enjoying an early morning dip. Our efforts to get them out, involving sunbeds used as ramps and much ducking and diving, resulted in a pool full of poo. Somehow, even after the pool was cleaned by the local farmer, swimming no longer had quite the same attraction. Still I suppose you can’t expect ducks to distinguish between a farmyard pond and a posh swimming pool!

    • bronzite says:

      Great image, Hazel. The mystery of the crayfish! Every time it rains they appear – on the roads, in the grass, in the pool – standing on their hind legs and shaking their claws at you. Do they fall out of the sky or crawl out of the waterways? Once out of the water is that it? Should I pick them up and boil them with some bay leaves or be a softy and save them? A protected species in England and supper in France!

  2. Such a funny story. Thank you.

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