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I have shared in the last year how rivers have burst their banks here, and people have been flooded, not least when Rich got stuck at a job.

The winters have ben warmer than we first arrived, who can forget theHoarfrost one winter and the freeze when our gas froze?

But generally the winters have been warmer but incredibly wet. We can deny global warming as much as we want, but it clearly here, with increasingly wet, torrential weather in autumn and the winter and droughts in the summer.

This year the forecast for our region is for a wet winter. Over the past couple of years rivers have burst their banks on occasions and last year the Mayenne river was drained and dredged. This year they are taking it further:

Throughout this region of France, and in most regions, there are ditches that run alongside the roads. I wrote only recently of how our ditch was blocked and caused problems with our cess. Well last week up pulled a digger and dumper truck, and each and every ditch along our road was cleared out, including ours which was a result!

When I asked Marc our neighbour he said it was the commune who had arranged for all of the ditches to be dug out, and pipes fitted under the road to take any excess water down to the river. Our ditch is now clear and RD has breathed a sigh of relief because clearing that out would have been hard work.

The commune are preparing because they know that the long term forecasts are for heavy rain, even over the past few weeks we have had torrential rain, with three inches of rain in just one night! Add that the long heavy showers we have had for most of the days in the last few weeks, and our ditch was over a quarter full. But as you can see it is now virtually empty again. Drainage systems work!

But it is not just here work has been carried out in the other surrounding small towns and villages to ensure that contingencies are in place.

It frustrates me when I watch on TV the awful situation that the people of Yorkshire find themselves in due to recent rainstorms in England; with the government refusing to call it a state of emergency. Yes there is community in that people help each other, but where is the sense of community where those who are meant to support the people are concerned? Why did they not look at long term forecasts? When was the last time the rivers were dredged, or the drains cleared out, or ditches dug? Where is the sense of community to the community? This is not aimed at one political party, because this has been something that has been going on for so long. Too long! And it makes me so frustrated.

Since living here I have realised just how much RD and I had lost our sense of community, and I am glad for the lesson I have learnt since living here.

Wherever we end up in the future, it will need to be somewhere with a sense of community.

Rosie