Tuesday 26 June - 5am interview, bed, CdS, World Cup, Drumsara

We were up at 4.30am preparing for the 5am interview with the Expert Assessment Panel for the DELWP MicroGrid Grant. A few last-minute panics as Skype refused to work, but by 5.02am, we were connected. We started off with our 5 minute elevator talk, followed by 40 minutes of questions. In general they seemed happy with what we had to say, but they appeared more keen on the distributed solar scenario (with panels and batteries at each house) rather than all solar panels at the Solar Farm, mainly from the perspective of energy security during emergencies etc. So we agreed that was a reasonable direction, even though the Solar Farm had better economic benefits. A decision will be announced in late-July, so all we can do now is wait.

Then we went back to bed to catch up on lost sleep.

Later in the morning we started doing some research about the Carte de Séjour, in preparation for our trip to the Prefecture at Montauban in the coming days. We double-checked that we had all the documentation that the French Consultate in Sydney told us we would need. Once we were happy with that, Rita rang the Prefecture to find out the procedure that we should follow, and found that we would need to book an appointment online. She looked online and found that the earliest free appointment time was 18 July - three weeks away. She then rang back to check the required documentation, but the guy on the line couldn’t really help. He told us just to front up early the next day without an appointment, and with a bit of luck they might process us then and there, if we had all the paperwork in line. Sounded optimistic, but we’ll give it a go.

In the afternoon, the final games in Group C of the World Cup took place. Australia were disappointing in losing to Peru 2-0, but it didn’t really matter since France and Denmark had colluded to ensure a 0-0 draw in their game, ensuring that both went through to the finals. If this had happened in cricket, they would have been charged with match-fixing and thrown out of the tournament; but this is the so-called “beautiful game” where anything goes for the bigger teams.

In the early evening, I saw a Facebook post saying that Piper Barge Drumsara had arrived in Moissac and had gone down to the Tarn. So I posted a welcome reply, and they invited us down for drinks (since they knew of us via the Fêtes). So we wandered across and spent an hour or so with Bridget and Greg Patmore, learning of their Piper experiences and generally getting to know them. Very pleasant way to spend the early evening as the sun set and the moon rose over the Tarn.