Yesterday was our friend Eileen's seventieth birthday, and we were invited to join her and her friends for tapas and drinks at lunch time, to celebrate. I went to church as usual but left as soon as the service ended instead of staying for tea and chat, so I was home to collect Chris by 1.00 and we walked up to her house at the top of the village. There was a good crowd of both English and Spanish friends there, and we knew them all except for a couple who were visiting from UK. We had lots of fun, and proved what they say about living in the sun keeping you young. Here is the birthday girl, not looking anywhere near her seventy years, and here is her husband Jack who made a very credible Groucho! My friend from New Year's day, Cabillo was there again, and we all did our best to keep him cheerful. He had a very sad start to the year when his forty-year old son died in a tragic accident. We spent a very pleasant afternoon together. Eileen had put on an impressive spread - rather more than just tapas - and we had music and dancing, and lots of chats with friends, and we left early evening to go home and feed the dogs.
Today I went up to Albox to my 'wool lady' as I needed one more ball of black wool to finish the jumper I am knitting for Ella. Elaine runs a business selling mainly English wool, from her home. A lot of the Spanish wool is very harsh, so she has lots of customers for the types of yarn we are used to using. Up until now she has kept all her wool in big plastic crates which she has to get out each time people go to her. But this year she has opened a little 'shop'. It is a weather-proof wooden construction behind her house, and on Mondays it is open all day. Other days we ring up and make an arrangement to visit. All along one wall she has shallow cubby-holes where she can display one ball of each yarn in each colour that she stocks, making it very easy to chose what we want. On the opposite wall she has examples of garments so we can see how the wool knits up, as well as several folders of patterns, and boxes of buttons, needles, and other accessories. It all looked so lovely. I would love to have worked in a wool shop, but there are so many different yarns available now that it must be very difficult to know which to stock. Elaine mainly has the regular 4ply, double knitting, aran, chunky and baby yarns, but she does have a few specialties as well. Once we have made our choice, her long-suffering husband fetches the amount we need from the garage where the bulk of her stock is stored. I only bought my one ball of black today, because when Jonathan asked me to knit the jumper, I had just started an aran jacket for myself, so I shall go back to that next, and try to finish it before it gets too warm to knit. It is already too warm for me to wear it this year, but at least I can get it ready for the autumn.
Another month has passed and so far I am keeping up with my photo a day challenge. So February's photo board is complete and I have done the page of journalling to go with it so I can remember what they all are.
March's board is now a going concern and I am looking forward to getting some good pictures for it when my sister Jean comes out for a week at the end of the month. In the middle of April Jonathan and Ella are coming for a week, and then in May we have our visit to UK. We had a bit of hiccup with this because both Jonathan's and our flights were on a new route by Ryanair from Almeria to Liverpool. We were quite excited when we saw this was starting last month as Almeria is so much closer for us than Murcia, and Liverpool is quite convenient at the other end too. They offered some very reasonable fares as an opening offer and we thought we had done quite well. Then, at the end of last week we read in a local blog that the route had been cancelled due to lack of support. It hadn't really been running for long enough to give it a chance, but I suppose they were going by the future bookings. So while I was out yesterday, Chris spent a long time on the phone to Ryanair, and he has managed to rebook for both of us, Jonathan from Murcia to Manchester, and us to Birmingham. That does of course mean that we now have to drive to Murcia instead of Almeria, but they have let us keep the agreed fares, so it isn't too bad, and all our holidays are still safe. So we have a busy few months ahead, and lots of nice things to look forward to.