34. Not Long Now

We had a fleeting visit home for the wedding of the son of Roger’s best mate from university. This was a wonderful interlude in the Peak district in an idyllic location with amazing catering and fabulous cupcake, courtesy of the very glamorous mother of the groom (in the photo).

We had a super opportunity to catch up with old friends. M&S (not the retailer) had been very accommodating as I’d sorted out all my stuff in November and left it with them to bring. I was relieved to find that the only thing I’d missed was jewellery, which I could live without, even if I seemed to have very rare naked nails and eye-lashes and completely natural eyebrows.

This week on our day off (yes, we still took one) found us on the route I had planned last week. The lifts seemed a little more temperamental than usual as we found ourselves suspended over pistes, watching others fly past below us, but there are worse places to be stuck. We enjoyed some superb skiing in brilliant sunshine, even as low as St Martin.

Snow canons created white ribbons through the newly uncovered brown flatten grass from last autumn. Some south facing areas were looking very bare but there is still plenty of snow higher up and on north faces, but slushy at the bottom after lunch.

Our bin store roof reflects this contrast as it still sports thick snow on north side. Although there is more sunshine this is due to a high pressure area which contains pollution, which is really surprising considering the reputation of clear mountain air.

We were back to the usual problems on Thursday: EDF had reduced the supply from 18 megawatts to 3 mw as they thought the season was over. Nope, we have 3 more weeks of guests, although some of the 1850 chalets have closed for the season.

We have more ‘slebs’ in other chalet. I overheard a conversation which included Rob Lowe and his wife, the Geldorfs, Nigella (there is only one isn’t there?) and Rowan (Atkinson) I felt a little awkward when one guest, who I didn’t recognise, asked about the antics of another, who’d been out the previous week and has been plastered all over the press, named and shamed several years ago. My lips were sealed. But it is a relief to learn that they still do stupid things like forget passports or bring expired one instead of current.

We had to go to La Tania, after doing Loft and Mollard on Tuesday and Thursday, to help out the person who covered our changeover at the weekend and was enjoying a 40th wedding anniversary trip to Paris (on which he didn’t want to go.) We jumped on the 11.45 bus, after watching an arial display which the Red Arrows need not heed, but finishing the other chalet at 1.30 meant a 40 minute wait for the 2.10 return bus so we indulged in a burger and chips and tartiflette at the bottom of the piste in yet more sunshine.

It was nearly 3 pm before we returned, after Roger diverted to Loft to see if they had any more power, they didn’t. This was too late to go skiing but we wont get a chance Fri/Sat/Sun due that annoying thing called work. By Monday the snow will have receded and deteriorated further, so we took the books and a bottle of claret up to our picnic table overlooking the valley until last lift down at 5pm (and repeated the following day with a bottle of our bargain fizz.)

It transpires that that the EDF electricity bill hadn’t been paid! Oops

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