Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Happy Birthday !

Yes, today we had a birthday to celebrate. Chico and Miki are one today. It doesn't seem possible really. On one hand it seems like no time at all since we bought them home as bouncy puppies, and on the other hand, it is hard to remember a time when we didn't have them. They posed for a very nice birthday photo, but apart from that it is just another day. They did get a few extra treats this morning, and a few this afternoon to bribe them to sit still for the camera, and this afternoon we have sat out the back with them, enjoying the sun while sheltering from a very chilly wind.
We had quite a surprise yesterday morning when we took the dogs for their first quick run across the road. I said to Chris, "Look at the clouds on the mountains this morning. They look almost like snow", and he said "I think it is snow!" And sure enough, as it got lighter we could see quite clearly that they were indeed covered with snow. This is the Cabrera range of mountains which lies between our village and the sea. (They are the ones that were ablaze in those aweful fires last summer). They are not particularly high and it is very rare indeed to have snow on them. We took some lovely pictures looking down our street between the flats, and leaning over the back fence. It remained chilly all day but the sun was out, and by lunch time the snow had gone. It has been bright again today and the forecast is good for the whole week, but the temperatures are way below what we expect and hope for. It seems as though all of Europe is experiencing unusual weather. Some friends of mine were due to drive to England yesterday, so they set off at midday, but they had to turn back because there were traffic jams for 200Km on the motorway towards Barcelona. Apparently the road was closed due to a heavy snow fall!
Once again we have a circus in town. There seems to be one every few months. They set up their Big-top on the ground behind our house, and park their vehicles alongside it. This one has the long lorries containing big cats again. They seem very restless and we can hear the lions roaring on and off all day. This morning the sides of their van were lifted and we could see the cats legs as they walked up and down inside the caged interior. A shaft of sun just caught the end corner of the cage and one big cat made the most of it and sat there to rest. All we could see was a huge paw sticking out through the wire. Next to that there is a caged enclosure where three lions have been pacing up and down all day. It is time for them to get hungry now so we will hear them again any time soon. I took this photo from our garden. It is quite intimidating to have such huge wide beasts almost in our back yard!
In my last blog I posted what I said was the penultimate picture of our road, so I thought I had better post the 'ultimate' one today. Yes, it is finally open. When I got home last Friday night, the workman watched me struggle up the road with a load of things and then excitedly told me I could now drive up, and indicated that the lane on our side was for parking. With a lot of hand waving and a few Spanish words each, I learned that it is now a stretch of one-way road. We can drive up it but have to go around the side roads to the plaza to get back out of the village. It will take a bit of getting used to, and the locals seem rather inclined to ignor the signs when it suits them, so I hope it doesn't take an accident before everyone accepts the new arrangement. We had expected it to be one-way down the road, but they obviously think this is better. Anyway, it is nice to be able to park outside our own house again, and it is so much easier when I have a load of shopping on board.

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