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Bassin problems

A week ago, the newly refurbished bassin was filled; the water was beautifully warm, clear and inviting. I enjoyed my first dip, particularly welcome with daily temperatures reaching the mid-thirties.

Then a day later I spotted two problems: the bassin is losing water – I’m having to refill a couple of hours a day (I shudder to think what my water bill is going to be like) – and the filter pressure gauge, is reaching red almost immediately, requiring a daily backwash, and loss of yet more water.

Julien has come several times to work out what to do. The pressure gauge problem has been perplexing him and he said that soon he was reaching the limit of his expertise and we might have to get a specialist up from Montpellier.

But today there has been a possible breakthrough. Julien came to replace the gauge, just to check whether the old one was faulty. Miracle: ten hours later, the gauge is still on the green not red! Perhaps I should wait till tomorrow before opening the champagne, but I’m beginning to hope that this could have been a problem starting last year and now resolved.

The water lost is potentially more serious. We think that the pool is leaking somewhere at the bottom (the previous weeks cement work was round the rim, where the most evident cracks had appeared). Julien said that in the autumn we would have to drain the pool and apply a new skim on the entire surface. I liked the fact that he referred to “us” – I think after the week working here we have got to know each other better and he is now more committed to taking on responsibility for his dad’s project. Meanwhile i just hope that there is not a ban on hosepipes and I have decided to simply not think about the water bill.

The trouble is that the high temperatures all week and the intermittent closing down of the pump means that the water has turned from a glorious pale, transparent blue to a much less appealing opaque green. Today we have had a spectacular thunderstorm (the first rain for a month) and this will have added to the problems. Julien has applied a large drum of liquid oxygen, but says it will probably need more.

Getting the bassin in working order is proof that I am hanging on to the hope that the family can come in August!

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