The car has been playing up for the last couple of weeks, refusing to start in the cold mornings. We're a good couple of miles from the nearest bus route, shop or station, so it's kind of essential. Replaced the glow plugs (£40), then the battery (£60); still no good. So it's been bicycles, battery on charge every night, and faffing about in dressing gowns in the frost putting heaters under the block and ether up the air intake (which one really shouldn't do with a diesel, as it can blow the manifold off). Yesterday we finally sorted it with a new starter motor (£££s).
So what happens? To add to the bitter cold, it starts to rain like you've never seen. French rain, from France. And they've spread pig muck on the hill, directly upwind. And then - as we prepared dinner for eight - the loos start backing up, and I find that the lowest drain is overflowing over the terrace. So Bob and I were out in the freezing monsoon, in the gathering dark, inhaling pig poo, rodding the sodding drains, swathed in our oldest macs and hats in case of collateral splashback. When the blockage finally cleared with a great audible glop, the plunger nearly got dragged in by the suction, with the two of us on the end of it.
Talk about it never rains but what it pours. Sometimes I think there must be a divine hand in all this. With a warped sense of humour.