After the sun comes the rain…

It had to happen but after over two months of hot sunny weather it was still a shock to be woken by the sound of rain pounding on the roof of the caravan.

I lay in bed this morning warm and cosy listening to the drumming drone of the sudden change in weather glad that we had already moved bags away from the edge of the awning last night.  The clay ground here is like concrete and so it will be a struggle for the water to drain away today but hopefully our ‘moat’ will do its job and keep the worst of the surface water out of the tent.

The ground desperately needs some rain, the meadows that were lush and green when we arrived are parched and stripped bare from the cows grazing over the summer. Sebio has been supplementing them on hay over the last month and has now moved them to the top field again so we have lost our inquisitive neighbours. :(

Molly is cuddled up on the bed not wanting to venture out in the cooler wet weather and Oscar is curled up on a deckchair in the awning – a half way house as he is not quite ready to be a ‘bed’ cat again yet.

We are in for wet weather for the next two days and then the sun returns for the weekend and next week, but it is a sign that the seasons are shifting and our summer in Portugal is drawing to a close. We have about 8 weeks left here before we head back into Spain and it will be a busy 8 weeks as we have the bulk of our sightseeing and trips out still to come!!

It will be a struggle to drag ourselves away from our little oasis here in Portugal as we have had such a relaxing and laid back summer, but new adventures await and its time to get out and explore a little……… :)

 

Laundry….

Hmmmmm….a post about her laundry, now she’s really scrapping the barrel you are probably thinking and you may be right but bear with me as I try to explain.

Part of coming on this epic journey (there is another reason other than the sunshine honest :) ) was to see how I could make my life more simple. How I could manage with less baggage around me and with less paraphernalia to use.

It has always seemed to me that everything rely on to get us through the day requires energy of some description to make it work. Electricity, gas or oil and lets face it all those things are not in unlimited supply; well electricity maybe if we can find another way to harnass it that doesn’t require using water, gas, oil or nuclear power.

So when we decided to travel in a caravan I was interested to see how much energy we could save by living this lifestyle. That we no longer have to heat and light a whole house is obviously a big saving and that I only eat raw food and have upped hubbies intake has also lessoned cooking times so another there.

Obviously we still have to fuel the car but we only use it once or twice a week for the shopping and I am hoping we can lower that as well by cycling to the shops when we can.

The other thing I got to thinking about was the washing and this week I have started an experiment in washing most of our clothes by hand (gasp). I have done three lots so far and it is actually strangely satisfying to me to be doing it this way; yes maybe the sun has gone to my head!

At home and also back at the other site I seemed to be doing about 5 loads a week, which for 2 people seems a little excessive so my hope is that I can reduce that to maybe just one or two load a weeks for towels, sheets and the really smelly stuff; remember I exercise every day!!

Of course it helps immensely that the sun shines so brightly that getting things dry without spinning them is not a problem and wringing the clothes out is also really good exercise for the hands and wrists (please control the need to comment further on that point!). I’m sure I wouldn’t be trying this if I was back in wet and grey Diss.

I am thinking that maybe I can buy a little mangle (if they still make them that is!!) I can remember helping my Grandma put her washing through one when I was little and I loved it. Seeing all the water squeezing out and everything coming out the other end all flat and smooth.

Ok, now I am sounding like I am a little odd so I’ll stop there but will keep you posted on how my experiment goes – bet you can’t wait…