Friday, November 14, 2008

Intrepid explorers

Although we woke up to bright blue skies this morning, a chilly wind from the north meant it was the first morning I have felt the need for a cardigan on, to eat breakfast on the verandah. Our thermometer was registering 13º at 8.30, but by 10.00 it was up to 23º again. Ever since we arrived I have talked about exploring some of the lovely coastland between here and Villaricos, and a bright, but slightly cooler day like today seemed perfect to give it a go. Chris decided to come with me. He would have preferred to tackle the hill at the back of us, but I know I wouldn't get far if all the way was an incline, so we agreed to try the coast. To begin with it was easy. We walked through sand and gravel and sank into a foot deep layer of dried weed, but then we were climbing over rocks, and every headland we rounded, led to more. Chris gallantly went ahead and tried to find a route that he thought I might manage, and so we kept going until we came to a rock face that there was no getting around. So we had to climb up to the road running just above us, and from there we went back down into one more cove before turning for home. Each of the little bays has a name but I don't know them all. I know the final one was Cala Cristal; (The sign at the top of the footpath was a bit of a giveaway!). It was the only one we got to this morning that had some sort of a walkway down the cliff. The rest were just dirt tracks. Anyway we had a short rest at Cala Crystal and I spotted a large flat rock, just out in the water. Being me, I had to climb on it to pose, so I handed the camera to Chris and started to climb. Unbeknown to me, he was busy photographing my less appealing side! Once on the rock I posed for him and then dangled my legs over the side. I thought it wise to remove my shoes, but yes - you've guessed - I dropped one into the water. This was on the seaward side of the rock where the water was quite deep, and I was too high to reach it. So I scrambled back to the beach, hoping a wave would bring it in for me. Unfortunately they seemed to be taking it further out! Chris said I had to let it go and he would walk back for the car to take me home, but I like those shoes. They are so comfy. So I tucked my dress into my knickers and waded in to get it. And I did! It had taken us an hour to walk there so I was then faced with an hour's walking home in a wet shoe, wet dress, and sundry other wet things too! We decided to go the easy way home so we walked along the road, which gave us quite a different perspective from when we are driving along it. Of course, I continued to take photos, including one of our special 'little mountain' that tells us we are on the last bend before home, and the fantastic view we get as we climb the last hill and see our little hamlet of El Calón in the foreground, then the sea, and the coastline of San Juan stretching away beyond it. My shoe survived, and my dress was nearly dry by the time we got in. It was a lovely walk. The air was filled with the scent of wild rosemary and oregano, grasshoppers were leaping everywhere, (they get as big as three inches long here), and I spotted a couple of lizards but they don't stay around to introduce themselves. I have inserted a couple of pictures in this but you can see the rest of our little adventure on my gallery. (

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