Well, we have had some very strange weather this month, strange that is for August in southern Spain. We expect unremitting heat, so hot that many of our friends return to UK for a month or more because they can't cope with it. Chris and I have found our own ways of coping, mainly by doing what has to be done as early as possible, and then doing as little possible for the rest of the day! If we are at home, we usually spend the afternoons stretched out on the bed under the fan, either dozing or reading. Then a nice dip in the pool gets us moving again. A dip just before bed is also a lovely way to end the day, and at the minute, the water in our pool is still around 28º at midnight. Having said all that, we have had quite a few days this month when there have been no blue skies to wake up to. Instead we have had black clouds that sometimes hang around all day. Even on these days it is still hot, often over 30º, but still not as hot as we have come to expect in August. When the clouds did clear for the day, they gathered again during the evening and we had a few nights of heavy thunder storms, that scared the dogs, and usually knocked out our television reception, so we've had a few evenings of listening to radio or music instead. Such heavy rain tends to just run off the hard baked land, but it has done some good, and everywhere is greener than it was this time last year. We read in one of our local papers that one night there was four foot of flood water in parts of Mojacar, and serious damage to the road. It must have been a very damp and cool August for people living up in the Cabrera Mountains. One day last week, when we got up, the clouds were so low that the mountains were clearly visible peeking out above them. But now, summer is back with a vengence. It was so hot today that I put the washing out on the line, and half an hour later I was bringing it in again before the shower towels were burnt to a crisp!
I can now sit at my desk for short spells at a time, with a big cushion under me to make it more comfortable, so I decided it was time I made some Christmas cards. i see the anesthetist at the hospital, at the end of September, so I could well get the appointment for my cataract operation before Christmas, and then I won't be able to make cards or anything else for that matter. As it is, I am really struggling to see what I am doing, so I am trying to keep things simple this year, and you will all have to make allowances for my crooked edges and wobbly painting. it is somewhat bizarre to sit here dripping in the heat, and trying to colour in little pots of snowdrops and robins. It just doesn't seem right. But I am making progress with them; about 18 done, and another 150 to go!!
My leg continues to improve, and I can now walk around the house with reasonable ease, though when I just went down the road to the recycling bins yesterday, I was exhausted. My bruise has almost gone, but last week a new one appeared a bit further down behind my knee, which is obviously from a more deep seated bit of the injury and explains why that is where it hurts when I sit down! I still haven't risked driving so I am reliant on other folk to take me places, and so far my only outings have been to my sewing group last Wednesday and church on Sunday. So when Chris said he was going to the garden centre today to look for plants to revamp our rather tired looking window boxes, I jumped at the chance to go along too. There weren't a lot of flowers to choose from this late in the year, but we bought a couple of late petunias, some trailing plants whose name escapes me, and several small kalenchoe which are very long lasting out here. When we got back, Chris carried the boxes out to the table at the back, which remains in the shade until the afternoon, and I sat there spending a happy hour doing 'gardening', while Chris cleaned the windows and mosquito screens. Now it is all back in place, and looking a lot better than it did. (Note I have a cup of tea in my hand - a true gardener can't work without plenty of tea!). I have one fairly big empty pot on the front yard - something that didn't survive - so while we were buying plants I picked up this gorgeous yellow hibiscus. Isn't it beautiful? It remains to be seen how well it does. They don't really like to be constrained in a pot, but I have a red one that is surviving, so there is some hope for this one.
This big green bush, half covering our front door is still the beautiful poinsettia that we bought last Christmas. Of course, there are no little yellow flowers now, nor red bracts, but it is such a healthy plant that we haven't the heart to get rid of it. It makes a welcome patch of shade and Paco likes to lie there undisturbed. The dogs are rarely in the front garden, and I don't encourage the kittens to go out the front door as they have had little opportunity to learn any road sense, so Paco has it all to himself.
I obviously have left it too long since my last blog. I am supposed to be doing lots of short entries instead of these long ones. So my apoplogies for this rambling entry. I'll try to get back to doing it more regularly now.