We have been on the Costa del Luz now for 7 weeks, still in semi lockdown and are officially unable to move around. Though we have seen many vans heading up and down the coast regardless, we will be setting off later this week heading for Gibraltar to fly back to the UK for Christmas. It is amazing just how many hoops there are involved if you want to do this right! Anyway, enough of that for now.
The weather this week has been much better, and we have filled our boots with long walks, the best of which is along the cliffs to Barbate a round trip of about 25km. The contrasts of the sea, the cliffs and pine forest make it very enjoyable and we usually have a snack when we get there as a reward.
We have done this walk over 5-6 times over the past few weeks and it always enthrals us with its dramatic views and the glorious smell of the pine trees.
On top of that you notice new things every week like this odd structure in the port area.
We will miss this so much when we leave, unlike the Mediterranean coast, the Atlantic side is unspoilt and low rise. If you have never been here, it is wonderful, with fantastic food, amazing beaches, walks, cycle paths, history and more. It can be windy, but it has not been too bad while we have been here. The average temperature has been in the high teens early 20’s over the past weeks.
Tuesday was our shopping day, so again we slipped into Conil along the cycle path rather than risk life and limb getting to Barbate. As luck would have it for the first time since we arrived in Spain there was Churreria open. Churros for those of you that don’t know, are rope like doughnuts freshly cooked, and you then dip them in thick hot chocolate. I ate them quickly, Karen not being a big fan and headed back with our shopping to the campsite.
This week the cat that adopted us ‘Pino’, went for his operation, tests and jabs. As we come to the end of our stay here, we have been trying to get him adopted by someone. Sadly, we have not had any luck with this so when we leave on Wednesday he will be back on his own. To attempt to make this easier for him, we arranged through the local cat rescue group to him neutered and have any jabs that he might need plus worming.
We have during all the time we have travelled, avoided becoming attached to any animal as leaving it so hard. In Turkey we had during lockdown become attached to BooBoo and miss him, but he was loved and cared for by the camp so though we were upset leaving we were not worried. But ‘Pino’ will have to fend for himself, this saddens us, though the cat rescue people think he will be fine as he is cute and smart. Fingers crossed.
There was one upside to our vet visit is that we had a pass that allowed us to move to different municipalities, so we were able to get some parts for ‘Buster’. Karen has been looking for an extra shelf for her clothes. But the TV ariel is in the way, so a bit of inventive work had to be done. Luckily, we were able to borrow some tools to cut a hole for the ariel to move up and down and am rather pleased with how it looks.
With a lot of time on our hands we were able to take a new walk from Conil to a tower where rare Ibis have set up home I know you guys must be bored with beach shots sorry but can’t resist.
We also took advantage of the pass and had a proper lunch out, rather than a hastily grabbed tapa. The restaurant on the front, did not get the best reviews, but so many more are now shut, for reasons we aren’t sure of, but we took ours chances and weren’t disappointed. The roast shoulder of lamb was fantastic, and Karen enjoyed her dorado, not a cheap date but worth it.
As we have said the weather has been hit and miss and we like to go out for a good walk every day and we walked out to our favourite Sherry bar for a last sherry there. The sun shone and we enjoyed a little tapa and sherry before starting to head back. The ‘App’ said there would be no rain, but it was wrong, and we got back absolutely soaked head to foot. Bad planning.
We spent our Sunday afternoon in Fresco a sort of street food place up the road from the campsite with Emily who had lent us the cat transporter and Karen and she had a cocktail. Fillipo and his wife run it and we have had great coffee breakfasts, and a few drinks with them if you come to the area do pay them a visit lovely people, great food and drinks and fun.
But we are preparing to head back to blighty and are busy emptying the freezer and fridge of all perishables. It is quite impressive just how much the freezer holds we have been eating in most of the time we have been staying here and will not finally have it all gone until Wednesday. We have been lucky enough to find a safe place for ‘Buster’ while we are back in the UK. We have rented a studio flat for our isolation period in the UK. The one thing about living in a motorhome for a year is that living in a studio apartment will seem to be bigger than the van! We will be self-isolating for two weeks unless the governments Test to Release scheme starts on time and we can get tested after 5 days and leave isolation.
We are sure of one thing; our experience of home will be so different to when we left in January. We hope we will be able to see some friends while we are there. But it is family we are home to see, all our plans to meet up while were on the road came to nothing so having Christmas together means a lot.
We will not be blogging until we return at the end of the month and with a bit of luck continue the journey until we must return in April. We hope that all of you and your families have a peaceful safe Christmas, and 2021 is kind to you all. All the very best David and Karen