Tuesday, October 28, 2008

This sky's on fire!

After a beautiful day yesterday, it was disappointing to wake up this morning to cloud. However it soon cleared, so Ben and Dave set off to investigate Mojacar, and I went in the opposite direction to San Juan. As I drove back home I noticed that the sky was geting rather black, and I just made it indoors before we had a violent thunder storm. We watched out of the side window as the rain bounced off the road amid a cloud of steam from the hot tarmac. It didn't rain for long but the rest of the day was overcast and colder, but it ended with a lovely surprise when we were treated to this spectacular sunset behind the mountains, which was reflected as a ribbon of pink silk in the sea and sky in front of us. Of course I had to get the camera out. These pictures have been touched up slightly to remove the blemish from my camera lens, but I thought they still deserved to be shown.
Last night I took the boys into San Juan to have a look around and find themselves a meal, which they did. But when they asked the bar-tender to call them a taxi, they were told that there aren't any. The nearest company apparently work from Mojacar, over half an hour away in the opposite direction, and of course, they wanted a small fortune to come over for them. So we drove to collect them, and learned an important lesson on the way! It didn't matter. It is only a ten minute drive each way, but at least we know about the taxi for future reference. San Juan is an odd place. I guess it was a very small village at one time, but like most places along this coast, it has quadrupled in size at least, with row upon row of houses and apartments. There is a lovely long beach with golden sand and a very tidy and pleasant promenade, and a big fountain in the centre. But there doesn't seem to be anything else in the centre, and I have always assumed that the town is somewhere just off the main road. So today I went back to explore some more, and I discovered that that is in fact all there is. Apart from the supermarket where I go to refill our water carriers, and a row of bars and restaurants, I didn't find any shops, or anything else for that matter. I can't believe that one fairly average supermarket can meet the needs of so many people, but maybe they go somewhere else for their shopping. In the summer it is a very busy place and the beach is well used, but everything has closed for the winter now so it is very quiet. We like it there, but I think it is very short sighted of the developers to build so much housing without providing any amenities for the residents. But that's sort of how it is in many places out here. The boys drove themselves out this evening so they'll have to have an alcohol free dinner! Last night we all sat up on the roof terrace until midnight and it was lovely and warm, but I don't think we'll be doing that tonight.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Let's explore

I am pleased to say that Ben and Dave arrived safely late last night. They had a few hiccups on the way from the airport, but we used our mobiles and managed to direct them for the last bit. Then, of course, we sat and talked until very late at night, or early this morning to be more accurate, After breakfast this morning, they decided to set off along the coast to do a bit of exploring. Although Chris is much better today, he didn't want to go out yet, so I drove to a place called Puerta Rey, where I had been told there was a recycling centre, and I wanted to get rid of all the bottles and cans that had accumulated under the sink. Well, I found it easily enough, but once there I became completely lost in a maze of narrow, one-way streets, flanked by newish, and very posh villas. One road came to an end on the beach which was a huge empty expanse of flat sand. I stood on it and had a chat with a couple who were visiting the area and had also come upon it 'by mistake' while navigating the streets. Then I did a three point turn and headed back to the main road. A bit further along I turned towards the coast again and this time I found some very attractive, but too huge, blocks of apartments, with big areas of grass and trees in front of them, and then an even wider, flatter expanse of sand, which I realised must be Vera Playa. On our previous visit we must have just touched on the edge of it, because we were not at all impressed and wondered what everyone made such fuss about it for. It was actually a vast stretch of beach, with plenty of space for all the summer visitors. I shouldn't think it ever gets crowded. But like most of the beaches around here, there were little or no facilities. There were a few chiringuitas, beach bar/cafés, along the sand, which open for a few weeks in July and August, but they are all closed now even though there were quite a few holiday makers on the beach. I then turned for home, but being in an exploratory mood, I made one final turn towards the coast just before Villaricos. I knew this would be Palomares beach, and it turned out to be the nicest of the three. It was the end of the long stretch of sand at Vera, and it curved round to make a nice cove, with a barrier of shrubs, separating it from the road. There was a cross wind bringing in diagonal waves that broke along the beach in a froth of white foam. I stood there enjoying watching it for ages, before I at last made my way home. Soon after I got home, the boys returned too, and we discovered that they had been to all the same places as me, but in the reverse order!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Praise the Lord!

We've had a quiet few days as Chris is still not up and running though he does seem just a little better today. Hopefully he will get his appitite back soon. I am sure he will feel better when he is eating more. I drove myself to Vera Pueblo yesterday to look for a few items that we haven't seen so far. I had an interesting experience in a Día supermarket. This is the chain used mainly by Spanish people and the staff spoke no English, so when my 'plastic' refused to work, (it wasn't only mine), we did a lot of miming and threw a few random words at one another, and they set my trolley aside while I went to the bank where my card worked perfectly, and I duly drew out some cash and returned for my shopping.
Today I went to a little chapel that we passed two years ago when we spent a week in Arboleas. I tiptoed round it and peeped inside but no-one was around and Sunday had already gone so I found it too late to go to a service there. I couldn't remember exactly where it was, but last week we picked up a free paper in the estate agents, and in the classified ads I saw a few lines saying there was a Sunday morning meeting and anyone was welcome, and it gave a phone number for Rev. C.Smith. I was sure that was the name I had seen on the notice board last time, so I followed the directions and sure enough, there it was. There were about thirty in the congregation, mostly but not all English, and we had a very nice service. Afterwards I stayed for refreshments and got to talk to a few of them and they made me feel very welcome. Unfortunately the Rev. C. Smith is on sabbatical leave until February, but they seem to have a well organised team to run it in his absence, and several visiting preachers lined up. I shall be going there again. it is only a half-hour drive from here, and is nearer than any other I have found so far. It is called the Vera International Christian Fellowship, and is interdenominational. Todays speaker was from the Salvation Army.
I have now loaded a folder of photos from Villaricos on my gallery and added more to the 'Sea and sky' folder.

Friday, October 24, 2008

A 'grown-up' story

Today is a 'grown-up' story; too many words and not enough pictures! There are no photos because my camera has developed a round 'oil' stain inside the lens. I have no idea what happened, but it can be seen on most of my photos. We've tried everything we can think of to clean it but it's still there. The annoying thing is that the camera is still under guarantee; I bought it just before we went to Thailand; but all the paper work is somewhere in the depth of a container in Pontesbury! I expect I shall replace it as I really want to keep a record of all we do and the places we see while we are out here, but I shall keep this one in the hope I can find the receipt when I get back.
Well another day draws to an end. Poor Chris is still not fully recovered from his somewhat virulent tummy bug, but he is on the mend. This morning, with my new found confidence in the car, I drove over to Garrucha where I was told I would find a 'Farmacia' with English speaking staff. The lady there was very helpful and gave me some pills and drink-powder which do seem to be helping. She told me to give him 'rice and carrots', so I did! I am so hoping that I don't get it now.
Having got what I went for, I had a wander down the main street to see what else is there and I discovered it was market day, which explains why it took me ages to find a parking place. It was a very good market, over the length of three streets. I bravely asked for fruit and vegetables in Spanish, and even managed to understand what money I was asked for, so I'm getting better.
The clouds did roll by, just about. After a shaky start we had a very nice day, though it got windy this afternoon. I went upstairs to do some sewing but my pattern kept blowing away and I had to abandon that idea for today. My thermometer registered 20º in the shade but it felt colder than that to me, though I shouldn't complain. I am sure it is much worse back in Blighty.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

"Just wait 'til the clouds roll by"

This title will have a familiar ring for anyone who knows the lovely Irish song by the Fureys , but if that's not you, then take it as an apt way to describe what I've been doing for most of today! We woke up to thick cloud cover and mid-morning the rain started. We then had fierce thunder storms on and off all day. But there was a stiff breeze too, and by tea time the blackest clouds were getting blown away, so hopefully we have had the worst of it for now. I curled up in a chair and finished reading my book. Usually I ration myself to a chapter a day. I only have one more English book with me, but I am sure I will pick some up at the car boot sales that happen here quite regularly, and the supermarkets have one or two. Maybe one day I will be able to tackle one in Spanish. You never know!
Chris is a little better today, and although he has slept for most of it, he has managed to eat a poached egg, so hopefully he will be recovered by tomorrow. But I couldn't expect him to face a shopping expedition so I did drive myself to the supermarket this morning and replaced the milk, filled up the water carriers, and trawled the shelves for a few things to tempt him with later. I needn't have worried about the driving on my own. It was ten o'clock in the morning and I doubt whether I saw more than half a dozen cars on the whole journey there and back! I just made it home as the first drops of rain fell so that was good timing. I think I shall spend my evening assembling those Christmas cards I started the other day.
By the way, have you noticed how my little flower fairies keep popping up in the fairy art window? Lovely aren't they?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Life's little ups and downs

We've had a fairly quiet week so far as Chris is under the weather. He wasn't feeling too good yesterday morning but, as we both had mail to post, we decided to take a quick trip to Garrucha as we know where the post office is there. Mail duly posted, we stopped off on the way home at a little place called Villaricos. We went there on our last visit and we both rather like it. Originally a little Spanish fishing village, it is in danger of losing its national identity because of the large number of ex-pats who now live in big apartment blocks there. However it is still a fairly sleepy little place, with a wide bay, and a small harbour at each end. One end used to be a home for the fishing boats but it houses more small yatchts and pleasure boats than working ones now, though fishing is still very important all along the coast. There is a long, clean promenade where you can take a stroll, and benches for sitting watching the boats, and the sea-birds on the rocks. It was a lovely sunny morning, and we passed a pleasant hour there before Chris decided he needed to go home.
While he rested, I had a swim in the pool and then sat out on our sunny verandah making Christmas cards!!
Unfortunately Chris was rather worse today, and has spent most of the day in bed. I spent ages trawling the net for interesting properties on the market. There are plenty to chose from, though they are quite highly priced, despite the so called 'collapse of the housing market'. Anyway, I have drawn up a short list and we may get to view some of them, though we have plenty of time for that.
Today ended on a low note when I went to make us a cup of tea this evening, only to find the milk had turned, so its only juice for breakfast until I have made a trip to the supermarket. I will have to be more careful. Everything has a shorter shelf-life out here, though the milk was still in date and should have been O.K. Never mind; we have plenty of alternatives in the house, and if Chris is still not better tomorrow, it will force me to take the car out on my own for the first time. I've been working up to it, and have done quite a bit of driving with Chris sitting beside me, but I haven't gone solo yet, but it's something I really need to do, and the supermarket is only a short drive from here.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

What a weekend!

I am starting off with another beautiful sunrise picture. Isn't it lovely? It's a good thing you all know how much I love the sky, especially at sunrise and sunset. One of the best things about living here is knowing that there will be a new and very lovely scene everytime I step outside. I love to watch how the sea changes with the sun, (or lack of it). It can be vibrant, sombre, or tranquil, but there is always something special about it, and I can't resist reaching for my camera every time. Sometimes it is really hard to catch the mood on film, but I thought this one worked really well. As I have so many photos of the sky, usually sunrises here as we face east, I have decided to put a folder on my gallery of sea and sky pictures, and just add one now and again that I particularly like.
Well, this weekend has had its ups and downs, but mainly ups I am pleased to say. We decided to go shopping straight after breakfast on Saturday as we had lost faith in the post by then. So we set off, and discovered another different supermarket, with a much wider selection of foodstuffs. I even found some self-raising flour, though it was a tad expensive. But I'm not exactly going to use buckets of it am I? The shop had a range of foods to appease the ex-pat community, but wherever possible I bought the Spanish equivalent, which was considerable cheaper, and will help me learn more about what is available here. It is surprising how easy it is to read the labels with a little bit of knowledge and a lot of intelligent guesswork. I still haven't found dried fruit for my scones, but I did buy a tray of dried strawberries. That will be interesting! There was no pre-packaged meat there, but there was a long counter with huge lumps of 'carne', some of which I recognised and lots I didn't. Two butchers took orders and cut it up while you waited. With some trepidation I approached him and managed to buy enough meat to last us well into November. One thing I learned was to ask for under rather than over the weight required, because he took a wild guess and you got what he had cut, which could be getting on for a quarter kilo over what you asked for. It's a good thing I have a freezer! Anyway, we were just unloading all the shopping at our flat when - guess what - Yes, the post lady drove up! So thank you to all who sent lovely birthday cards and other messages. We had a great time going through it all. Even Chris' long awaited letter was there. The mail was dated between 9th and 14th October, and arrived on 18th, so it is just luck whether or not it gets to Pulpi (where our mail is delivered from) before she comes over here.. I know one package was posted around 14th that didn't arrive, so it won't come until next Friday or Saturday now. But at least that means I have something to look forward to next week.
Amongst the meat I bought was a whole chicken which roasted beautifully in my ramoska. However, when I s
witched it on again to try roasting potatoes, it cut out and fused all the electrics in the flat as well! It did this several times so we gave up. When it was cold we looked at it and found a loose screw in the lid which we think let steam in to the element so it shorted out. This happened to my previous one, and in the end it killed it. But this time we saw what we thought was the problem and left it all day today to dry out. Then we tightened up the screws and tonight it worked again. Hooray! I was seriously worried there for a bit.
With no post to wait in for today, we decided to drive
off into the way blue yonder, and having stopped off at a little mountain village that we like, called Sorbas, we then ended up in the National Park of Cabo de Gata, on the lowest tip of the Almeria province. We found a small town actually called El Cabo de Gata, with a long stretch of grey sand and a wide prom, where we sat in a very Spanish café and ate our lunch in the sunshine.
When shopping yesterday, I gave in to a whim and bought a squishy pouch of ready-mixed chocolate cake, so when we got in I decided to try out the remoska by cooking it. Of course I hadn't thought about what I might cook it in, but after searching through the cupboards I came up with three tiny loaf 'tins' made of silicone, that I bought just before leaving England, too late to put in storage, and I thought I'd use them. The result, three very acceptable little chocolate loaves. To the uninitiated, the first of these pictures is my famous ramoska; my life-saver in a cookerless kitchen!

And the proof of the pudding as they say, is in the eating!

I am sorry, I seem to have rambled on a bit today. Too much to say as usual. I'll try to be more concise next time. Hasta luega!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Feliz cumpleaños a me

Well it may be my birthday, but we couldn't go out as planned as we had another day waiting in for the elusive 'special delivery letter', which still hasn't come. Our neighbour told us that mail is delivered on Fridays, someone else said 'she usually drives over around 2.00' so we decided to wait around once more, but the witching hour arrived and went, but the post-lady did not! Tonight, another neighbour said that Saturday is a good day for mail, so do we sit at home again? Well one of us will have to go to the supermarket, that's for sure, as the larder is getting very empty in deed. Normally the post, or lack of it, wouldn't be very important, but we know there have been several items posted to us, (Including birthday cards, and very important letters) so it is kind of annoying. Right now a bit of junk mail would be welcome! Never mind. we have days to spare and the weather has been superb all week. So today I did another 'extreme' killer sudoku, the minimum amount of housework I could get away with, and a lot of lazing on the sun terrace with my cross stitching. We went out to dinner on Chris' birthday on Wednesday, but as our cupboards are bare, I got taken out again tonight, which was very nice.
I had a chat to Jean on Skype, Jo on facebook, and 'the lads' sent messages, so I haven't been short of birthday greetings. Thank you to those who have sent cards that haven't come. I'll let you know when they arrive.
Further to my post last Thursday about the sign on the beach. I now know that 'Tirar prohibido' isn't talking about throwing or removing the rocks; it is saying that it is forbidden to tip rubbish! So I learn something new every day.
I didn't take any photos of particular note to day, so I thought I'd leave you with one I took of the sunset last night, as seen from the roof. It was a lovely colour, and the little tree on the terrace, which is completely dead because I don't think anyone has ever watered it, silhouetted rather well against it.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

It's a hard life!

It's a hard life, or 'La vida es dura' as the Spanish would say. We woke up to a beautiful view of the sun hovering just above the sea, and as it rose in the sky, so did the temperature. Now I know you should always keep your thermometer in a shady spot, but just out of interest we moved ours onto the breakfast table, on the verandah, in the full sun, and it nearly blew it's top off, registering a blistering 40º!
We stayed at home again today waiting for Dad's special delivery letter to arrive, but it still hasn't. That's an aspect of Spanish life that we will have to learn to cope with. The 'mañana, mañana' attitude can be a tad frustrating at times.
nyway I took the opportunity to try out the pool attached to our complex. It is only small, but beautifully clean, and it is heated by solar panels which is supposed to mean it is usable all year as long as the sun is out. I'll pass judgement on that in December! Today it was lovely. A great way to cool down, and do a bit of non-strenuous exercise at the same time. Chris took the photo from our roof terrace.
After lunch I sat up there to do some more of my cross stitch. At this rate I might even get i
t finished before I come home. It has only taken me six years to do the first half, so six months to do the other half will be going some for me, but the light out here is perfect for it, and it is something I can do outside. We weren't sure how late we should wait in for our letter, so rather than both go out, I sent Chris to the supermarket for essential supplies, but it was obviously not coming today, so this evening we went to a restaurant in nearby Villaricos, and had a lovely dinner to celebrate our birthdays. Now we are safely home and we are going to hit the sack just on the right side of midnight. Maybe we'll be up in time to see another lovely sunrise tomorrow.
Buenas noches todo el mundo.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Sending you fairy wishes

We all need a bit of fantasy in our lives, and I just love anything to do with fairies. So when Chris encouraged me to explore what can be done with a blog, and I found I could add a different example of 'fairy-art' each day, I couldn't resist. I've also changed my layout a bit. I think it looks tidier and I hope you agree. Just for today I have included a piece of my own fairy-art. It is an Artist Trading Card (ATC) that I made last year, for a swap organised by a craft shop on the Isle of Wight. I sent two of my cards in and received two lovely fairies from other people in return.

It was good to chat to Jean on the phone today. Now I have four people on my list of Skype contacts. I look forward to adding a few more.

We've had a lovely sunny day today, but we stayed at home in case a letter was delivered. It wasn't! but we weren't really surprised as today is a national holiday so most things ground to a halt. I did a bit of crafting and spent the afternoon up on the roof terrace, doing my cross-stitching. I did manage to strip the beds and get the linen washed and dried as well, so it's not 'all play and no work'.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

A lazy, hazy day

I seem to have got sleeping sickness since I came here, because I wake up a bit later every day. It's just not like me to stay asleep until 9.00, but I seem to do it every day here. Perhaps we just needed to unwind a bit. But at least we woke up to sunshine today. I had a bit of a surprise when I took my 'brunch' out onto the verandah though. Yesterdays rain must have come straight across from the Sahara. Everything was covered in rusty coloured sand and I had to wash all the furniture before I could sit down to eat.
I had a good talk to Tom using Skype today. It is so nice to be able to chat. Unfortunately Chris tells me that a webcam would need too much power for us to use one, so I have to knock that idea on the head. I rather fancied seeing who I was talking to, but apparently the picture would just keep breaking up.

I was considering a dip in the pool this afternoon when I heard some
other people were down there.I looked over the verandah to see who it was and spotted a man from the flats in front of ours, and he was skinny-dipping! I don't think he realised he has neighbours this year. Anyway I decided not to join him today. Maybe I'll give it a go next time the sun shines.

This evening we went down to the little bar on our beach and had dinner there. It wasn't quite the Sunday roast I am used to, but half a roast chicken with chips hit the spot non the less. It is a nice little bar, run by an English couple but with a good mix of Spanish and English in the clientele. We spent a while chatting to a lady from across the street who gave us some useful information about shops etc. We have just come back home and are going straight to bed, so maybe we will surface a little earlier tomorrow.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Just another Saturday

The sun struggled to brighten up our day again today. We went to Garrucha this morning, a twenty minute drive away, as it is home to our nearest post office. We must have looked a right pair, struggling along the prom in our summer clothes, fighting to keep our umbrellas up in a force nine gale (well it was very strong!). But with the temperature a steady 24º all day, it's just too warm to put a coat on. It dried up by lunch time but stayed overcast all day. The sky was a luminous yellow at teatime but they are promising us some sunshine tomorrow.

We went to the craft shop this morning only to find it doesn't open on Saturdays! Never mind, we explored a few new roads. Some are becoming quite familiar.
I made a disastrous batch of scones today. Not having scales didn't help, but I think it was definitely plain flour that I bought. They were flat as a pancake and as heavy as lead. Chris gallantly ate one but I I think I will have to feed the rest to the sea-gulls but they may struggle to take off again if they eat them. I'll keep an eye open for something resembling baking powder, and have another go.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A very blustery day

Today is what Winnie the Pooh would definitely call 'A very blustery day'. I walked along the beach this morning and it certainly got rid of the cobwebs, but when I went just around the headland, it nearly got rid of me. I met the full force of the wind in my face and it was enough to nearly knock me off my feet! Needless to say the sea was very exhilarating, with waves breaking way out on the horizon, and again as they hit the shore. There'll be another layer of weed there after today, but it isn't at all smelly, or full of flies, so it's not a problem. When the sun broke through a crack in the clouds, the light on the water was lovely.

Ben has sorted his Skype out so we had a chat this morning which was great. It will be even better when we have learned to allow for the slight delay so we don't keep talking over one another!
The couple who own this flat brought us a couple of more comfortable chairs today, which pleased me. The sofa is high and when I sit back on it my little toes dangle a few inches off the ground! Not ideal. This afternoon we drove to a big hypermarket about 15km away and bought a printer for the computer, and other bits and pieces we haven't seen elsewhere. Chris bought himself a little camera like mine, so we will be competeing to get the best pics now. Although it is gone eight o'clock at night, dark, and the wind is still blowing a gale, the temperature outside is still 22º. Not bad eh?
I had a lesson last night from a long-suffering Chris, and I can now reduce the resolution of my photos so I can load them up more quickly and efficiently. I have also reduced their physical size just so they fit on the page better, but if you click on each one can you view it full screen. If your eyes are anything like mine, these little ones don't really tell the story, do they? I shall have to invest in a bright table light if I am going to use my evenings constructively, but i am going to do a bit of craft now anyway. Hasta luego.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Some you win, some you lose.

It's now Thursday and the laugh's on you today. It looks as though the weather in good old Blighty is quite reasonable today. It's coming down in bucketfuls here! There was loud thunder during the night and it's certainly roughed up the sea a bit. Fortunately I can enjoy the wildness of it without going beyond the roof terrace. because it is definitely a 'stay-at-home' day.

That's an interesting sign on our beach - ' Prohibido Tirar'. Prohibido speaks for itself, but in my dictionary 'Tirar' can either mean 'to throw' or 'to pull', so we are not sure whether we are forbidden to throw stones, or forbidden to pull them up and take them away!

The weather could stay like this until after the weekend, so you picked the right one to come Mike. Let's hope it gets it out of its system before Ben and Dave come over at the end of the month.

I paassed the day making a couple of birthday cards and wishing I could get to my crafting goodies that are all stored in the container back home. Still it will encourage me to be a bit more inventive with what I have got.

Hasta mañana mis amigos.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The story so far.

Well, here I am in Spain. We had a fairly uneventful journey to get here. We both managed to get some sleep on the ferry, (Poole to Cherbourg), but it was disappointing to find it was raining when we disembarked. However the roads were empty and by nightfall we had made it just across the Spanish border. We spent the night at a motel near San Sebastian, and after a further day's driving we finally arrived at the flat we are renting, around 8.00pm on Wednesday 1st October.
Our flat has a big sun roof where we can sit and watch the sun rise out over the sea, if we get up early enough. We are just a few steps from the 'coast' which is rocky and very lovely, and if we want a beach for swimming etc, San Juan is five minutes away by car. Our unpacking is all done and we are beginning to feel at home here.
Chris, my hi-tech husband, has sorted out the
Internet for me and set up Skype on the computer so I can keep in touch with the folks back home. And now I have this blog which will be a way for me to keep a record of our life out here, and share my news with anyone who wants to read it. I shall record such trivia as the weather (just to make you all jealous), and my impressions of the various places that we visit, so I can remind myself when I have seen so many that I get them all confused! But I will also be writing about how I spend my time, and I look forward to reading your comments.
So far we have spent time in San Juan,
Garrucha, and Mojacar, all of which are beautiful. In Mojacar we were directed to a huge ferrateria or hardware store where we bought everything from kitchen utensils, to storage boxes, to computer cables, and various other bits and pieces that we found a need for. The flat is well supplied with most things, but as it is mostly let for short holiday breaks, the kitchen is somewhat lacking after my very gadget filled one at home. The main 'gadget' that is missing is the oven! but I am rethinking the way I cook things and have managed to come up with some fairly edible offerings so far.
Mike came out for his regular cigarette run this week end. He visited his usual haunts and pals along the coast, and then he came here and spent Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning with us. Monday we went to San Juan and enjoyed a swim in the sea. Unfortunately there is an area of standing water across the road from the beach which must be a breeding ground for
mosquitoes, and we all got some nasty bites, (worse than any we got in Thailand). We had supper in Villaricos and then enjoyed a few drinks under the stars, up on our roof. The next day we went to Garrucha and swam again. It was very hot there, and I was glad I had added the sun-cream to my bag. After lunch Mike headed back to the airport and we went home.
The owners of our flat had left some magazines and maps for us, and in one of them I read an article about a craft shop in Vera, so today we went looking for it. It is quite well stocked and I am sure I will be making use of it. The owners also run monthly
card-making and ATC workshops which I will attend, and hopefully I will meet some like-minded friends. It was a shop predominantly for the ex-pat community, so I hope I will find a way to make some Spanish friends as well.
After shopping we drove to a village called
Bedar which I liked the sound of from various property sites I had read. It was a pretty group of white houses stretching up the side of the mountain, but some of the roads were so steep and narrow, and they made me very uncomfortable. I know I would never get used to them enough to live somewhere like that.
This afternoon I was sitting out on the
veranda. sorting through my craft stash, and thinking about making some cards, when a few large rain drops drove me inside. This soon developed into a full blown thunder storm, but despite this, it is still really warm, up in the mid twenties. It is nearly bed-time and I am still plenty warm enough in my little sun-dress. After tea I tried using Skype to ring Jean and we had a good chat. I have had three months of just e-mailing everyone to keep in touch so it is really nice to be able to actually speak to them again. And until I get around to chatting to you, feel free to keep track of our time in Spain by reading my blog every now and then.