A bit of Neoprene and yet another pair of trainers….. 20/10/15

Just in case you wondered, we are still here in Alicante where despite a few storms the weather is still in the early to mid 20’s during the day, going down to mid to upper teens overnight….. unfortunately there is still no sign of the door handle, so it looks like we are here for another few days at least.

Last weekend was a long weekend for the locals, with a regional holiday on the Friday and a National holiday on the Monday and one of the small towns near where we are staying celebrated their Christian and Moors festival, kicking it off in style with a dis-embarkement and fight before dawn.

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Despite a heavy day on the Sunday we managed to drag ourselves out of bed before the crack of dawn, encouraged by the huge quantity of gunfire in the distance. Tradition has it that the Moors arrive on boats to fight the Christians for the town. Whether it was in tradition or not, most of the Moors (and definitely some of the Christians) were slightly worse for wear when they finally got close to the shore, fortunately jumping into the water helped sober them up πŸ™‚

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It is quite an event and worth getting up early for despite the fact that the Churros con Chocolate weren’t quite up to scratch on the way home πŸ™‚

Everyone has their vices and apparently mine is sports clothing. Β Having spent the last few weeks swimming in the sea we have been contemplating buying a wetsuit so we can continue into the winter, so today we ventured out to a triathlon store and succumbed to the pressure… we are now both proud owners of Zoot wetsuits ….. mine appears to be a little tighter than Keith’s, but I have been assured that it needs to be like that and it isn’t just so that everyone can laugh at me trying to get it on and off – I best ensure that the Churros and Chocolate keep a low profile from now on 😦

Having switched to forefoot running last year, but continuing with normal running shoes, I noticed that I have worn through to the softer layer more quickly than normal so took advantage of being in the store to talk to them about options …… I have now welcomed a new pair of purple Newtons into my sport shoe family, not sure where we are going to put them, or what I am going to use the other pairs for now….. dilemma….

A little bit of culture in Benidorm…. 7/10/15

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Naivity ….. or perhaps just lack of exposure and knowledge forms our expectations in life and growing up in a country where there are four very clear seasons we, (or possibly just I) make assumptions which it is only when you delve a bit deeper, you learn more. I always assumed that Oranges and Lemons, like apples and pears are seasonal, and that you only get fruit at a certain time of year…. however, if you read our blog back in January/February, you will know that Spain and Portugal were overflowing with Oranges and Lemons and somehow, just like magic, the trees seem to be full again…. you would never lack in vitamin C if you were homeless or short of a penny here πŸ™‚

We have also now come into Date and Fig season – we found plenty of figs in France, Northern Spain and Portugal last year but didn’t realise that there were more than one variety – having now tried another, we would stick to the darker skinned ones we are used back home πŸ™‚

My dad has always been a big fan of dates and although we have seen them on the trees, this is the first time that we have come across fresh dates in the markets…. just be careful as when they fall from the trees they can cause damage!

So, on leaving Palamos we drove down to Benicassim having assumed that we would be able to stay in an area where there were lots of motorhomes back in March, however the local council has obviously decided to put a stop to it over the summer and there were big signs warning us away, so we went back to the Bonterra Campsite (18 euros a night with ACSI), where we stayed earlier in the year.

After a lovely run along the promenade in the morning we set off down to Alicante, winding our way up into the hills and then back down again through Jijona, the home of Turon (Nougat) before arriving at San Juan Playa (Area Campello Beach n38.39444 w0.41042)

The weather is still very warm here – during the last couple of weeks it has sat in the upper 20’s / low 30’s – even the sea is 23 degrees….. can’t complain. The end of September is officially the end of the ‘Summer’ in Alicante, so much so that on the 1st October there wasn’t a lifeguard in site and the diggers were taking away the beach cafe’s to store in a warm place until the end of May next year….. needless to say as the weather has been so good we have both been going swimming anyway πŸ™‚

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Whilst in Alicante, we have been trying to find some nice restaurants and new places to explore for when we are back in January, even venturing up the coast to Benidorm for the day as Elisa was dancing in a ‘Christians and Moor’s’ parade which took place on Saturday evening. A good opportunity to see whether Benidorm actually does live up to its name …. from what we saw, I can confirm that it does – although we found a great place to eat thanks to Miguel’s sister, and the parade was worth seeing.

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Despite planning to leave Alicante on Monday, somehow Keith managed to break the door handle to the back area of the motorhome on Sunday…. obviously stronger than he thinks πŸ™‚ so, although it is secure and we can get in via the front cab doors, we took Mika to a Buerstner dealer in Elche today and they have had to order a new door handle as the mechanism has seared in two….. looks like we will be here for another couple of weeks……