Friday, January 29, 2010

Up the workers

Nothing much happens round these parts, especially in winter. But it's been a bit different lately. Back in November, our quiet little hamlet was invaded by teams of workmen with trucks and diggers whose task was to dig up the through lane and our back lane and lay a new underground electrical supply system for the entire village, together with an outdoor meter for every house. Then, just before Christmas, another team turned up with different lorries and diggers to rip out the old water supply pipes and install new ones, together with new outdoor water meters. Job done, they all disappeared a couple of weeks ago and the hamlet returned to its old peaceful ways. However, although we'd been connected up to the new electrical system, we hadn't yet been connected to the new water meters. And the old street lamps were still in use, the wiring cables for the new ones dormant and jutting out of the road, topped with red and white warning ribbons fluttering in the breeze.

The teams arrived again last week. Firstly the electricians and then the waterboys. The electricians began by putting up new mock Victorian street lights. Then they took down all the overhead wires and, finally, the ugly old cement poles. At night the hamlet has been transformed. It's like the Blackpool illuminations. We now have a streetlamp round the back so it's no longer pitch black by the woodpile and shed. And the old lamp by the entrance to the drive which only occasionally worked has now been removed and replaced by a new one halfway along the church wall. This means I'll now have to find some other post to connect up the washing line. Might have to cement in an iron pole. And at the bottom of the garden there's another bright lamp. Casts a window shadow on the bedroom wall. Personally, I preferred the old lighting system. Maybe I'll get used to this new one given time. Then yesterday the waterboys came a'knocking. Ripped out the old meter and connected up the new one. So I think that's it - one tiny little hamlet in the middle of nowhere now boasts flashy new electrical and water systems. All very impressive. And anyone who says French workers are a lazy bunch of skivers is talking rubbish - the waterboys started work yesterday at eight and finally knocked off at eight, in the dark, and in a snowstorm. Up the workers! (Click on photos to enlarge.)


  1. Shame about the demise of the washing line.

  2. All that's required is one metal pole, one bag of cement and one massive hammer. Don't have any of 'em. Stumped.