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Floods in Var

Bad day for a drive.

storm 12 °C

The next morning it is drizzling rain and G suggests it is a good day for wineries. I have picked the Haut Pays de Provence as it is the closest region for us to get to. We are heading west from Grasse to Draguignan. The rain has picked up a bit to. We have only got 10 kms when G announces he is not feeling at all well, so we pull into a bakery for a rest and some food and to see if there is an alternative route. There has been some rain here too as the area around the bakery has lost power. We grab some cold food and head to the toll road to work our way across on an easier road.
Progress here is quicker, but instead of the usual 130km/h in the slow lane, today we are at 80km/h and no one is passing us. Well, we don’t think so it is just hard to tell through the curtain of rain. Hop off the toll road at the Draguignan exit, but we are heading west to Les Arcs and Taradeau to see some of the wineries there, rain is really pelting down now. At Les Arcs, the gendarme turn us around as the rain has flooded the Taradeau road, so we try to skirt around via Vidauban, but the traffic comes to a standstill. Instead we head into Chateau Maime, surprising them that anyone is out in this weather at all, let alone to taste wines. Nice Rose there. Moving on the roads to Taradeau are definitely blocked and we have to head off elsewhere in the search for wine. The next place is up hill and down dale, mostly on sealed country tracks.
Still raining

Still raining

Asphalt road washed away in the torrential rain

Asphalt road washed away in the torrential rain

As we go along we can see that the rain is streaming down the hills and in places is ripping up drives and paths, but also cutting through some poor or old bitumen sealed road ways. Similar surprised reaction at the next place we taste, and on our return we can see that the regions terroir is flowing down the hills. On what remains of the road

On what remains of the road

We get on a main road next to a stream which is now a rolling red torrent spreading out over pastures and vineyards. We decide to take shelter in a shopping centre just off the road, but only spend a short time there before we are told to evacuate because the wind and the rain have worked under the roof and it may collapse very soon. We hightail it out and back to base along the tollway at 80 km/h again.
The next day the news is saying that 8 died in Draguignan and another at Les Murs. Two days later the death toll had been revised up to 25 with 10 still missing, and had we been a couple of hours earlier, we would have been right in the middle of it, rather than on the soggy extremes. Counted ourselves very lucky.

Posted by lostagain 05:02 Archived in France

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