Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Aguilas

Tuesday we took a trip to Aguilas, about 70 miles south of the villa.
Beautiful blue skies and the temperature reached 19C
The fields are covered in plastic structures with a variety of trees growing under them.

A trip to the railway museum was not what we expected
instead of details of the local railways it was  a model railway.

Trains and memorabilia

This structure [more about it later] was fascinating

A trip to the loo in the local shopping mall.
Senoras mosaic

Cabelleros [Gents]

Even the ceiling of the mall had wonderful mosaics on it.

This is what I had come to see, the Hermitage made of recycled mosaic
tiles. It was in the middle of a pretty park.

Ave Maria

So many tiny pieces cemented together

Last year in September we visited the steps and seating made by
Juan Martinez [ see blog posting ] but did not know about the Hermitage

Chris enjoying the sun shine

There are structures everywhere made by this remarkable man
The eagle is the symbol for this area.

The Hornillo landing stage is an old mineral loading facility
built by the British at the end of the 19c
Iron ore arrived by train and was loaded onto ships
from both sides constantly. It was a very busy area.
Our next stop on this trip was Arboleas, but that's another story for another blog post.

Snow!!

Cannot believe it, it is snowing here in Spain. It never snows here!
A quick trip to Iceland to stock up on essentials and then it's batten down the hatches.
Everyone in the store was talking about the snow, and one man said he heard on Spanish rado that we were in for more tomorrow.  Chris wants a holiday refund, he came here to sun bathe, but I am just thankful I have my knitting and crochet to keep me busy.
The first few flakes of snow, not what you want on a sun bed.

Even the lemon tree in the garden is turning white
Its also coming down thicker and faster.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Full English Breakfast

The head cold rages on, but undeterred we went to the Lemon Tree Market ( also known as the English market) for breakfast. The wind was blowing a gale so we wrapped up in our coats for the first time since arriving here.
There is an old saying feed a cold, starve a fever... so I went mad and ordered the FULL English breakfast costing four and half euros. I must admit it beat me but I did not leave much.
We wandered around the market and bought a couple of items then headed for the warmth of home.
Full English with hot chocolate on table 13 !
The toast is to share !

Love these little Spanish dresses, bought them for my granddaughters some years ago.

Laser cut vinyl records, a new one on me.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Catch up

Here we are Saturday already, where did the last few days go?
Firstly I have caught Chris's head cold, which has meant I was not keen to do very much. However we have managed a walk most days it is just against my nature to ignore the lovely sunshine, especially when pictures of home show snow has fallen.

Orange trees growing in someones garden

These bushes and their vibrant colours are everywhere. Bougainvillea I think

The pool is being drained for repairs but just look at that sky and the sea in the distance.

My first sock of many countries [knitted in England, France and Spain]
It's partner has been started.

Friday 13th temperature at home mid-day 2C burr

Temperature here the same day 16C much better.

Out for fish and chips as its Friday and become something of a ritual.
We were joined by Pauline Brian Karen and Maxine.

Villamartin tiled plaque. I love all the colourful tiles everywhere.
Today we made a quick trip into the local C & A where I bought a cardigan and another local shop where I bought a top, then back for feet up to try and stop the miseries of a head cold.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Man at work

In the garden of the villa is a lemon tree full of the largest lemons we have ever seen.
Chris has been suffering with a really heavy cold ever since we got here so the lemons have been squeezed and honey added for him to drink.
We also had some oranges, so while he was in the kitchen they were also put through the juicer..
Fresh orange juice for breakfast, nothing better..
Man at work!

Mojon flood damage

Last year we visited Mojon beach to admire the sand sculptures and beautiful beach. The tiled broadwalk along side the beach was a pleasant walk to admire the scenery.

A return visit yesterday was a completely different picture, the floods that this area of Spain received a few weeks ago had obviously come in a torrent down the little side streets, taking out the railings and washing away the sand. I think it will take a long time for this area to recover.
September 2016
This is all there is left of the sand sculpture area

Red tape where once there were pretty railings

Sand and debris every where

Monday, 9 January 2017

A stroll around the block

I am walking more each day, the sun is a real help to motivate me and the scenery so nice. Everyone you meet has a smile and friendly word. Come with me today.....
Our front door and the only steps I need to cope with

Out the gate and turn left, this is a nice well kept planted area between the houses

Walk past the swimming pool, much too cold for a dip

Back around the block with the sea in the distance.

The saga of the Heathland blanket

Attic24 blog site have a CAL running that started a couple of days after we arrived in Spain so I bought the wool and was keen to work it as my holiday project.
Fifteen balls of Wool were wound into cakes, I prefer to use cakes for crochet. This looked like a LOT of wool so I asked Lucy the designer of the Heathland blanket what colours I would need for my six week holiday. Her reply was the five balls of green, so I left the rest of the wool at home.

January the 6th arrived, the first day of the Crochet Along and I soon realised I could only work the first five repeats, which only took me a day, before I could go no further. I need the colours I had carefully wound and left at home. HELP!

After asking around about receiving post at our rental villa it looked hopeless.
A trip to the only wool shop I could find within a fifty mile radius turned up a similar wool that was either too thin or too fat, definitely would not do.

Put on Sherlock hat and think again....
I am using Stylecraft Special DK so went to their www site to see if there is a Spanish retailer.. BINGO one name appeared. Looked up where the shop was located, not good news it's one hundred miles away. BUT one of the places we want to visit is about seventy miles in the right direction so what is another thirty miles ?
Emailed the shop only to find it is closed until Jan 16th Elaine the owner is in England.
However she is pretty sure she has the colours I want and will email me as soon as she is home to let me know.. Guess where I am going on January 17 th?
Progress so far, decided to substitute the next two colours as I
need to keep going and do not have the right colours. 

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Friday Fish Chips and the beach

Friday we went to the local fish and chip resturant for lunch. It is always a favorite and such good value for 7 euros.
Cod chips and peas for £6, the best ever.

After the large meal a walk by the sea was called for and we took off to find  a beach area. The weather was not as hot as the day before but it was still very warm, when we came across this Watchtower at Torre de la Horadada. Built in 1591 it gave its name to the town together with the "pier" an outcrop of land into the sea with small caves made by the water.


The Watchtower, sadly closed to the public
The watchtower sign

The pretty harbour guarded by the watchtower

walks down to the sea

We are having  a lovely time


Friday, 6 January 2017

Socks and Sun

The weather here during the day is glorious with clear blue sunny skies. It is so nice to be able to sit outside, but I get bored so have to have something to do. I tried playing on my iPad but the sun makes it hard to see the screen, so out came my trusty knitting.

I started knitting a new pair of socks in England and managed to get the 16 rows of ribbing done.
Travelling through France as soon as it was daylight and I could see what I was doing to worked the main part of the sock down to the heel and completed most of the heel turn.
As soon as we hit Spain I worked on the rest of the sock.
I am amazed I can knit in the car, as I am not a good traveller, but I find I can only knit while we travel the Autoroutes / Motorways, as soon as we start going around corners I have to stop.
Sock knitting in the sun

Rib in England
To heel in France
Main part in Spain

Thursday, 5 January 2017

January 4th and 5th

Our final day on the road, was quite a journey. 500 miles to be exact from Pau France to Villa Martin Spain. We left the Hotel at 8am to arrive at the base of the Pyrenees when day light appeared at 8.30. No point in missing the wonderful scenery by travelling too early.
At the base of the mountains the temperature was a freezing -5C with many of the waterfalls a mass of frozen ice. The road on the French side was pretty clear of traffic but as we reached the Col du Potalet the traffic approaching from the Spanish side was nose to tail, mostly with ski racks on their roofs.

As we continued our journey we hit dense thick fog / smog near Valencia, then the temperature started to rise and topped at +22C with lovely hot sunshine.

1335 miles on the road from home but at least the fuel is cheaper in Spain, we paid E1.28 litre.

After collecting our keys and unpacking the car we went out for fish and chips with our friends Pauline, Brian and Shaun for a very pleasant evening.

5th means sorting out our belongings, shopping for food and generally relaxing. Even sat in the sun with my sock knitting, while Chris sat in only shorts sunbathing... this is the life.



The approach to the Pyrenees from the French side.

Suddenly Shaun the Sat Nav sends us down a narrow street!

Not only narrow but bandy and two way!!!

Approaching one of the many tunnels.


There are a number of Dams along the route and this one has bears feet painted up the side.

Fabulous views in all directions

Scenic water ways

As we approach the ski slopes the snow gets thicker.