The clocks went back last weekend and now it’s dark by 6.00 pm. Instead of taking an apéritif on a bench in the setting sun, we now sit by the wood burner. The squirrels are vying with us to harvest the falling walnuts and the trees are starting to turn. Autumn is drawing on.
Every month I post an update on how the weather has been in our corner of southwest France, based on the statistics we have kept since 1998. To see the other weather posts, please click on ‘Weather’ under the Topics tab in the right-hand sidebar.
Weather assessment for October
According to Météo France, the official forecasters, October 2013 was one of the warmest since 1990. That might be so but, according to our statistics, it was also one of the gloomiest since 1998. Looking back over the year overall, 2013 has without a doubt been the worst since we moved here – with the exception, thankfully, of July and August.
A quick reminder of our subjective weather assessment: we assign each day a plus if it’s fine, a minus if it’s bad and a zero if it’s indifferent or we can’t decide. In October we had:
Pluses – 13
Zeros – 11
Minuses – 7
The graph shows the percentage of plus days each October for the past 16 years (the line is the trend). Only 1998 and 2000 had fewer pluses.
However, apart from a cold spell around the middle of the month, when we had to put the heating on, it has been mild. We had no frost in October. When the sun has been out, we have eaten lunch outside and done some lovely walks. I took the photos on this post of a walk around Parisot a couple of weeks ago.
Our rainfall stats go back to August 2004. This October we had 82 mm of rain compared to the average of 74.1 mm and it rained on 11 days as opposed to the nine you would normally expect. Rainfall for the year to date (844 mm) has already exceeded the average total for a year (843.3 mm).
November has started damp and plenty of rain is forecast over the coming week or so. But here’s a heartening dicton (saying) for this month.
Brumes d’octobre et pluvieux novembre font ensemble un bon décembre – October mist and November rain between them make a good December.
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Always interesting to see the stats, even though our weather is often different. Wonder if Nov and Dec rainfall will exceed the average or not?
Towards the mountains, where you are, I’m sure the weather is not at all the same as it is here. SW France is a very broad area, after all. We went to lunch with friends yesterday who live about 20 km away and noticed as soon as we got out of the car that it was warmer chez eux. Whatever happens, we will certainly exceed the average rainfall here this year. Just as well, if the aquifers are to be filled up. Not wonderful for le morale, though.