August Swelters on( or the Sexist world of the Cicada).

Enduring the heatwave and a visit to the port of Cap d'Agde.



8/11/20222 min read

There seems to be little respite from ‘la canicule’ here in the South of France. But then August in these parts is always very hot. In truth I dread this month each year, with its fading colours, parched grasses and wilting tourists who insist on blocking the aisles of the local supermarket. Why oh why does everyone want to come on holiday now?

In May and June the world is filled with promise as nightingales serenade us from the hedges. As things heat up in July, the nightingales fall silent and the male cicadas take over with their constant buzzing. During this time B. is often wont to quoting his favourite rhyme:"Happy are the cicadas lives, for they are blessed with voiceless wives.

"Even in July flowers persist in borders and pots, and the world is still full of colour. But alas in August not only does everything fade, but prices rocket and people struggle through traffic jams to reach crowded beaches. Why do they do this to themselves? Of course I already know the answer . As a teacher and parent my summer holidays were once taken in August too. Today I am in Cap d’Agde, an hour’s drive from home. This, one of the largest leisure ports in Europe, is where we moor our small motor boat and escape to the water from time to time. Here in summer , people flock in their thousands to enjoy the beautiful sandy and volcanic beaches and parade along the quayside in smartly dressed family groups. It is quite a culture shock for us forest dwellers. They tell me that 31,000 boats are moored here, ranging from tiny sailing boats to super yachts with their own crews, jet skis and state rooms. This morning as we mingled with the milling crowds along the quay, the disparity between these monstrous wealth laden vessels and the rest of us seeking more simple holiday pleasures seemed gross. Anyone for an ice-cream?