You haven’t seen a storm until you’ve seen a Salviac storm. The dancing swirls of grey creep up on you, pulling you into a mesmerizing trance. Blink and you’ll miss the moment in which they suddenly appear above your head.
Staying at Domaine Lourejou, we had the advantage of being up on a hill in a fairly secluded spot. Speeding back from the supermarkets in Salviac, I stared out of the back window as the storm tried to keep pace with us. We may have been in a people-carrier, but in my head we were in one of those vans you see in the films when they’re chasing the storms. We climbed the winding, steep hill to our French country home relieved to have beaten the storm.
Jumping out of the car, we peered at the lightening dealing Salviac blow after blow. The thunder bellowed and we shrieked in delight. We crouched in the open field, poised with our cameras for the money shot. Caught up in the moment, those devious clouds somehow managed to deceive us and descended on our home from home. A rain bullet shot us straight in the eye as we looked up, before a deafening rumble of thunder had us running for cover.
Scrambling up the wooden stairs, we headed straight to the prime viewing quarters. Safe and dry, the camera reappeared and the suspense set in. Cramp from holding the camera to the window beckoned and just as I let it fall to my lap a killer bolt of lightening lit up the black sky. Opting to take mental pictures instead we just sat and watched the powerful performance.
After some time the storm stropped off to pick on another nearby village. We were left by a blindingly beautiful full rainbow that I couldn’t even fit into one photograph. Jumping around on the wet grass in sheer excitement, I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw the double rainbow (mainly because of that famous double rainbow YouTube video!).
As it began to evaporate our attention turned to the dance-off going on in the distance. Mother Nature’s interpretation of West Side Story was certainly dramatic. The clouds wore their wounds and bruises in shades of red, purple and black. Lightening bolts stabbed and pierced the sky, seemingly trying to outdo each other and even shocking my camera into a blurry mess.
Most people offered an apologetic smile when I told them that we had a grey day during our week in south-west France. Yet, I can’t help but feel grateful. It was an amazing pre-dinner show that I definitely won’t forget in a hurry.
Where in the world have you experienced surprising or interesting weather? I’d love to hear from you. X