Friday, 30 September 2016

Spain - France - Home

Sunday 25th
Well I managed it, finally completed my very first sock, and as a bonus it fits! Need to start the partner sock while I remember what to do. Strangely I didn't have too much of a problem with turning the heel, everyone seems to dread that part, but sewing up the final toe part... Nightmare, took me ages.
Now to start it's partner!

As this is our last full day in Spain we went to the Sunday Market for breakfast and tried a different stall, there are so many to choose from, they were doing a 2euro special English breakfast and it was really good.
On the way back we drove around a large reservoir which is always popular with cyclists, and they were out I their droves. The scenery is very pretty in this area, but there is hardly anywhere to stop and take photos.
Cyclists by the dozen

The pretty reservoir
Monday 26th
Up early, having packed the car the night before, for the start of our trip home. 509 miles through Spain to the Kyriad Hotel in Tarbes France.
Long almost empty roads, just a pleasure to drive here.

The colours in the rock face area sight to behold

This is one long crane, glad I'm not working at the top of it!

There are tunnels of every shape and size through the Pyrenees 

High in the mountains this cow was just wandering along the road ringing his bell!

Love the bear feet up the side of the dam wall. [click picture to enlarge]

Stopped in a lay-by, don't think I'll go fishing after reading this sign.

Wild crocus were growing everywhere

My lonely little car in the lay-by

Poivre Rouge our restaurant for the evening. My choice lamb cutlets, his, steak [ as usual]
Tuesday 27th
 7.30 and we are on the road again.
Stopped every couple of hours to stretch our legs and buy a meal deal on one of our stops.
Our overnight stop this time is another Kyraid hotel at La Fleche, near Le Mans. It is a pretty little town and literally a few steps across the road to the Buffalo Inn, one of our favourite restaurants.
Wonder if this totem pole will fit int he car? It would look good in the garden!

Ribs and chips... yummy. Guess what Chris had... you guessed steak!
Wednesday 28th
448 miles to home via the Eurotunnel.

Rouen from the moving car.. an amazing sight.

Sock progress in the car.

We arrived 3 hours early for the train so paid the extra £13 to change the booking. After the fairly empty roads of France and Spain, England came as a bit of a shock, Motorways jam packed, hold ups, and generally not a pleasant ride north to home.

As each day seems to have a meal as a highlight, we ended the holiday with take away KFC.
3491 miles since leaving home.

Now to open all the post, get the washing machine on, and recover from all the travelling and a great holiday, except for the Mossies... they were a real pain this year.

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Last Saturday in Spain

Where has the past week gone? Obviously having too much fun to write blog posts!
There is also the problem that I have not found a way to write posts on my iPad and have to set up my slow laptop, which drives me nuts. Why or why did Blogsy stop working other than in the USA?

Here's a little catch up...
First the most important thing, Chris celebrated his birthday on Tuesday with the most enormous steak at Asador Sierra Nevada, a restaurant that I found doing a google search for Steak Restaurant near where we are staying. The reviews were good so we booked a table. Pauline and Brian joined us and the reviews were right, it was  wonderful. A very intimate Spanish restaurant in an out of the way back street. All the inside tables were reserved so we were glad we didn't leave it to chance.
Brian and Pauline had sirloin and I had bbq chicken, Chris had half a cow!

The plate was almost too small for the steak

My chicken was really nice

Leaving the restaurant, which is on the left of the picture
Wednesday we had a trip to Murcia to look for two wool shops. Boy was it busy and parking a horror story, but we managed to find a space in an underground parking lot. We visited both wool shops, expecting them to be really good in the city, wrong, they hardly had anything not even one circular knitting needle between them. The walking in the city really played havoc with my knee and eventually Chris had to leave me on a bench and fetch the car. Thank goodness he found me again.

The approach to the city of Murcia

Date palms lined the streets.

After the great steak night last night we "slummed it" and ate at Ikea.
I must say the meatballs were very nice,
and its always fun to look around a well known store in a different country.

Thursday 22nd  was the actual date of Chris's birthday, and he seemed to like the fun T shirt I had bought him.
WARNING may spontaneously start talking about LAND ROVERS.

Worked hard mastering turning a heel and managed to get this far with my first sock.

Monday, 19 September 2016

When you get the urge!

For a week now I have had the urge to knit socks, yes I know I am in Spain on holiday and it is really hot. Researching we found a wool shop, like hens teeth very rare, but they did not have the right needles or wool, anyone would think no here knits socks!
Mr Fixit then found another wool shop in a near by town and these were the instructions for finding it according to Google...
Pilar roundabout turn left
1st roundabout turn right
At next right turn left
Then its the 16th or 17th road on the right
A treasure trove in such a small space
Such a nice little shop

Amazingly we found the little shop  called Lola Botona, what a treasure chest of things, plus just what I wanted and cheaper than I could get on line in England.

My sock making hoard
Having now joined a sock group on facebook, Winwick Mum Sockalong, and acquired the wool and needles etc. I need the pattern so set up my old laptop and little printer and they both behaved well printing off the pattern for me. Had to use my iPad at the same time.

Watch this space socks a go go.

Lemon Tree Market and a paddle

Sunday morning joined our friends Pauline and Brian for breakfast at the Lemon Tree Market, also known as the English Market because its full of, yes you guessed, English.
The market is one of our favourite places to visit and for the first time we saw a basket maker busy weaving very pretty baskets. Does not seem to matter how many times we visit there is always something new to see.
Full English, yummy

Love to see an artist at work.
Just noticed the car in the background has Chris's initials CJG !

Looking for fish?

On the way home we stopped at the Mar Menor for a quick impromptu paddle. Wish I was better dressed to enjoy the warm sea more.
It's lovely and warm

Saturday, 17 September 2016

I need a pair of shorts

Why is it so difficult to buy a pair of shorts at this time of year in a baking hot country? having trid most of the shopping centres we have visited I have not found a single pair. In desperation I tired one of my favorite Charity shops, still no shorts but a nice pair of cut-offs, so I bought those for three euros. Next a trip to buy the double sided iron on hemming tape. With very limited resources I used the kitchen scissors to cut off the bottom of the legs [ no rules or tape measures!] and set too with the iron to make turn up cuffs. BINGO a new pair of shorts even if they only last the rest of this holiday.
Kitchen scissors to the rescue

Have you any idea how difficult it is to take a selfie of shorts when your wearing them?
I'm pretty pleased with my new shorts, wonder if they will stand up to washing?
Maybe when I get home I'll use the sewing machine to sew up the turn ups.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Aguilas cont...

After leaving the CIMAR experience [ see previous blog] we travelled [ a couple of minutes walk]  along the coast to Rincon del Hornillo.
Hidden in a small corner behind the beach at El Hornillo at the foot of a residential area is a wonderful example of the work of Juan Martinez Casuco. He spent 12 years developing the site using broken tiles found in rubbish dumps. Even the wrought iron work was made by him.
The work is very reminiscent of Antonio Gaudi and the ultimate recycling project.

The first sight of the stairs is breath taking

Every stair front is slightly different

Date completed or started?

Comfy seats and interesting shapes

The Eagle represents the area

A little kiosk, sadly not open

Mosaics seem to flow around the trees

Even the Street is named after the artist

Shapes of every kind

Steps through the residential houses

This lamp standard has the signs of the zodiac worked in mosaic

Road roundabout at the top of the steps

Lush vegetation, and views of the sea

I guess this is a self portrait weather vane

Lamp standard

View from the beach, The garage seems to be out of reach !

Biopsy, bruises and a block finish

Thursday I went into hospital at 10.30 for my lung biopsy, the staff could not have been nicer and put me at ease. The procedure meant lying...