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We don't know whether to laugh or cry!

A few months ago we bought an apartment in Mandelieu-la-Napoule, just outside Cannes, South of France. We've spent several weeks there already this year and love it. We returned from the most recent trip almost 2 weeks ago (during which time our dog did a runner, which was well discussed on here)

Anyway, 3 days after we returned to Nottingham that area of the French Riviera suffered from flash floods and several people lost their lives through drowning. We were saddened to hear that people had died but we weren't too concerned as our apartment is on the 7th floor of the building. As the days have passed we've been getting vague updates ...... but today we called the people who live next door to us there. They mostly live in Helsinki and flew back to Finland on the day of the floods. At the weekend they went back to Mandelieu. They imagine that our apartment is fine, without going in there. However the underground garage has had 15ft of water in it, up to the ceiling !! There are around 140 vehicles down there that will be written off. We have a Renault Scenic and a Piagio scooter in the garage, along with loads of household items that were shipped from Miami, that we hadn't unpacked yet and we can't even remember what's in the boxes.

Oh yes, our Finnish neighbours car was only 3 days old, a big 4WD job, written off!

We should really go back down, now that the water has subsided and the airport and motorway are open again. The elevators are still not working in the building, we'd certainly plan our trips up and down the stairs!!

Good job we've got insurance ......

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What a big mess to have to sort out, Lizzie. Thank goodness no one was hurt in your block. Most stuff is replaceable, but memories aren't. I hope you didn't lose anything like that.

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Sorry to read this Lizzie. Thankfully the most important thing is that you and your family are safe. It could have been so different after reading about the poor souls who have perished in the flood. As you say, you have insurance; that will cover your monetary loss.

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So sorry to hear this Lizzie. It's to last thing you need after putting so much time, effort and savings into it.

I hope everything turns out ok for you.

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I can't add any more to what has been said before. This time of the year is critical in the south of France and along the coast line into Italy. We get it every year from now until Christmas. The problem is that it's so hot and dry during the summer, then it rains ...no it comes down in bucket loads and sometimes doesn't stop for days. The ground can't absorb the water quick enough. Last year Genoa was under water a few years ago the Cinque Terre, which is the most beautiful area, was all but washed away. The drains aren't very big either so adds to the disasters. Sad because so many people lose their lives but they are fairly strong they are thrown down but they clear away the mud and start again. I couldn't do it.

Lizzie my thoughts are with you and hope that you can sort things out fairly quickly.

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God does move in mysterious ways though, I have always thought that I have good angel's watching me.......It started years ago in the early 70's when we were booked on a flight to Yugoslavia, 2 days before departure our holiday was changed and we were sent to Rimini in Italy instead, naturally disappointed we went along, on arrival to Italy we heard that the Yugoslavion holiday plane had crashed, everyone killed.........It happened again when we holidayed in France, the weather was so bad that we came home 2 days early, there was a gas explosion at the resort hotel after we left, many were killed.......then early this year after a slight stroke/seizure, I was was in hospital and cancer was found which would have been undetected if I had not had the stroke/seizure, saved again- I am cured...... there are other instances but I would be here all night........I know it is irrelevant to the act of god story, but it proves to me that there is a god and he acts in mysterious ways........Not very nice for Lizzie though, but maybe there is a message there for her........I hope it is a good omen.....

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God is definitely looking out for you Blondie.

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I agree with Robbie's post ........God certainly needed you to stay here on earth a while longer, Blondie. As you all probably know, I also believe in God and that he has a purpose for each of us. Four months after I married in 1966, I had an ectopic pregnancy - didn't know for certain that I was 9 weeks pregnant as people didn't have pregnancy tests in those days - and came 'close as a whisker' to losing my life when the Fallopian tube ruptured. I'd had pain for a couple of days and vaguely thought it might be an ectopic pregnancy ( I was still nursing at that point) but the gynaecologist I saw told me it was probably just an inflammation of the Fallopian tube and that "you nurses just have vivid imaginations." As he was a doctor, I believed him. When I went home I was still feeling bad, so went to bed to rest. The pain was still there so my husband called out my GP who decided it was just a chill and said something about young girls not wearing vests!! The pain got worse over the next few hours and every time I moved in the bed I apparently passed out for a few seconds - I can't remember too much about it. The GP was called out again at 8pm and my husband said that when he arrived and saw me he immediately phoned for an ambulance. When I arrived at the hospital, I was taken immediately to theatre as I was steadily bleeding internally, and apparently was given 4 pints of blood to replace what I'd lost, as well as having my Fallopian tube removed. Sorry if there's too much information here but I often think of that situation 49 years ago and am so thankful that despite the mistakes by 2 doctors I am still here. This was at a time when I didn't really know too much about God, but I believe now that he obviously had plans for me, which I hope in some small way I am still fulfilling.

As I've already said to you, Lizzie, I really hope that things will work out for you as you try to sort out the flooding problems in France...

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Poohbear, I don't claim to know why everything in this world happens the way it does - only that many of the bad things that happen are caused by the actions of other people. I too was really upset seeing that little child - and also the other children and adults who are going through such a hard time - and have no answer to your question apart from saying I believe God is never 'on holiday.' I can only speak about my own experience and say that for me, life itself is a gift and I thank God for it.

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Sorry to hear about the damage to your apartment basement Lizzie, and also hope you didn't lose too many irreplaceable memories, as no amount of insurance can replace those. But thank goodness you are safe. (A little thing but I had a camera stolen once but it was the loss of the photographs on it that upset me rather than the camera itself.)

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Lizzie,you and hubby are safe and that's what counts!! I have learnt that Cars in particular are only metal and plastic. The weather,rivers and seas are all changing- in a thousand years people could identity our period as the start of a drastic climate change..who knows?..As Margie said life IS a gift,Gods involvement?- I suspect destructive mankind. Certainly the USA dumping old bombs from WW2 and korea on Vietnam hasn't exactly done the world any good.Atoll tests,chemical spraying on our foods,pollution etc..And apart from our destructive interference, the worlds leaders are not addressing that water levels are rising,coasts are eroding and rivers etc are now requiring some serious managing.. but while they are paying Rooney 25 squillion to kick a bag of wind....Here they recently identified 15 chemicals in a pint of milk!!- we are going soya!- Act of God I think not- man's greed,no wonder cancer is rife,at my Dads funeral the priest mentioned my Dads regret at pushing Monsanto products onto UK farmers thus entering the food chain!! Oh yes..how's the dog Lizzie?

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Seems to me this thread was about what insurance companies call "an act of God" and Lizzies very unfortunate loss of valuable possessions. It was not a religious thread meant to prove or disprove God's existence.

However since the question has been asked, as it often is when tragedy strikes. I would respond by saying, where was God when the Twin towers came down? where was God when Hitler was rampaging all over Europe? Answer. Same place He was when they nailed His Son to a cross for mankind. If you don't like that answer, just continue to rely on blind chance.

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Yes Loppylugs, I've been reading the various responses to my initial post and wonder how long this thread will remain on Nottstalgia, seeing as it has drifted onto Religion.

I appreciate the very nice and concerned comments from you all. We still haven't worked out if we are able to travel to S of F to actually see what the damage is, got so much going on here at the moment to even consider a trip. Maybe the problem will go away if we ignore it ........ thumbsdown

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I don't think so Lizzie. Life isn't that simple. A quick response to the insurance company, and immediate action in France is what is needed to put both your minds at ease. Best of luck to you both.

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I agree with FLY2.... Ignoring a problem like this Is probably not the answer. For your own peace of mind, it needs to be sorted - or at least, on the way to being sorted. It must be dreadful for you to be here in England, and not able to travel to your property yet. Are you still able to come to the meet up next week? I hope so....

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I'm sure attending the meeting is the last thing on Lizzies agenda at present. Get the claim in and fingers crossed.

I'm sure being present will turn up loads of items you've missed. Best of luck.

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if you do go Lizzie, ensure you arrange some safe accommodation for Jack, or take him with you.

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Expecting a violent storm tonight the sky is black and it's very windy. I've tied down what I can. We are high up but in a valley

So if we don't get floods well get the mud off the fields and make the landslide we had last winter even worse. Fingers crossed

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Stay safe nonnaB.

We've heard that the problems on the French Riviera 2 weeks ago may have been due to a man-made lake up near Grasse beginning to overflow and they opened the sluice gates, causing the water to rush down the hills above Cannes and along with the very heavy rainfall this created devastating floods. Don't know how true this is but that's the 'word on the street'.

A friend there told us that a man in his building decided to get in the elevator and go down to make sure his car was OK in the underground garage. As he reached the bottom there was a power cut and the doors wouldn't open, he was stuck in there and slowly the elevator was filling with water! Eventually someone managed to get the doors open to release him. What a nightmare situation! I've only ever been stuck in an elevator once before and that was in Vic Centre 40 years ago and believe me it was scary (without the flood water coming into it)

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CRIKEY! wotamess. Good luck with your stuff - hope it's all ok. Insurance can pay for it but it isn't the same as the original stuff is it?!

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Thanks everyone. The house fortunately is quite safe. It's an old farmhouse, typical Piedmont cascina with walls almost 60 cm thick so it would have to be a pretty tough tornado to do any damage. It's outside I'm worried about at the back of the house the land is uphill. It rained so badly that the land couldn't hold any more and it seeped through the walls and we had water coming through power points. Very worrying. At the moment it's raining very heavily, the dogs want to go outside, put their noses out and do a u turn.

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