France and Spain

France and Spain

We have had dreams of spending much of our winters in south western France or eastern Spain but we have had to postpone this several times over the past few years. As a result it is becoming slightly more remote and I am even wondering whether we shall ever get to achieve it. It may be my imagination but it seems to me that with the exception of the previous three winters (2012 - 2015) that winters in Kent have become sunnier and milder over the past few years and yet that the reverse has seemed to happen near the Mediterranean. Perhaps the route taken by the Jet Stream has changed and thus altered the characteristics of the weather of all the areas it passes near. The summer and autumn of 2017 seems to confirm my observations on the weather in south eastern England, it has been extremely mild with very little rainfall locally. As I write in very late autumn 2017 I would say that the paragraph which follows is still merely a dream, by no means yet a reality. In fact the weather here in Kent this Autumn has been almost like late summer with full sunshine most days and very little rain and even that is mostly at night. Winter-time officially starts in only 2 days time and we have had barely a week of cold weather.

If you are in south western France or Spain there is a distinct chance that in the future we may be of direct assistance to you as we hope to establish a centre (initially perhaps during the winter only) probably somewhere close to the E15 (A9 in France, AP7 in Spain). I cannot see this dream becoming reality until at least late next year but I am secretly planning for a more relaxed lifestyle and more civilised hours of work further south (at least nine degrees of latitude south would be nice). In Winter 2019/20 I hope to have our first extended stay in Southern France, not physically servicing the AC of cars but possibly available for advice etc., and using the time working on the computer trying to improve this very amateurish web site, catching up on my reading and walking our energetic dog. Hopefully this lifestyle trial should prove that we could adapt to the Mediterranean life for several months every winter (is there really any augument on this?).

In the meantime we are of little use to you except for expats coming back to England by Eurotunnel or by ferry to Dover as we are located only a few minutes off the A2 London to Dover Road about 6 miles from the Dartford Crossing.

We have been useful several times over the past few years to drivers on their way to the channel suddenly realising that the AC is not going to be good enough to cool them on the continent. I would never suggest that this is an ideal method of tackling a cooling problem but as a last resort it might be worth giving us a phone call, but only as a last resort. If you phone over an evening or weekend and find that our phoneline has the answerphone switched on then do still leave a message as we do listen to the recorded messages quite frequently. I still have vivid memories of someone who phoned and then arrived very early on a Sunday morning in a car that required two separate pipe repairs but was travelling with two young children and one very young baby only weeks old. Intending to drive right down to the Balkans to show off the new baby to grandmother, this just happened to be the first day of an extremely hot period that killed quite a few people in the Paris region with the excessive heat. It was very fortunate that we had all the parts necessary to make the repair immediately. They even managed to still catch the ferry they were booked for. I still feel good about this repair.

If like us you enjoy France I expect you also love their food. I had made up a dictionary of words pertaining to French food which I found useful. I was going to reproduce it here but I have now found a more comprehensive one that I am happy to point you to. A few spelling mistakes or typo's but very extensive - have a look for yourself - it is on the page of Useful Links and here - these pages might have been withdrawn.

Ridding the Screen of mist on the next page

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