At the beginning of the month, we drove the car across to Santander
and caught the Brittany ferry Cap Finistere to Portsmouth. I was
a bit nervous about crossing the Bay of Biscay, so made sure I was
dosed up with Dramamine as soon as we got onboard. Pondgirl was
just getting the first stages of a nasty virus. After a really good
meal, we retired to our cabin and sure enough, the ferry started
to roller coaster up and down some pretty big swells. The ride only
lasted a few hours, but by then PG's temperature shot up and with
the combination of the bouncing and a splitting headache, she had
an awful night. The next mrning, I got up to a much calmer sea and
left her in bed until we reached Portsmouth.
last leg into Portsmouth meant working our way past some traffic,
incuding this freighter. We eventually berthed just opposite the
Largs Bay, which I liked 'cos I was brought up in Largs.
Soon we were in Henley working through a busy schedule of catching
up with family and friends. One of our objectives was to hand over
all the bottles of our olive oil that we had brought with us. A
busy night at The Unicorn saw a bottle being given to each of our
friends, while more were passed on to family and a few to prospective
we were by the river, I saw these Grebes courting and a lovely little
Blue Tit eyeing the bird feeder in my parents garden.
At the weekend, we drove down to Plymouth
to visit Pondson. He was just shooing his girlfriend out the door
with a kiss when we arrived, much to their surprise. We had a wander
around Plymouth and lunch in an Italian bistro, before meeting up
with a gang of friends for a drink, a long supper with vigorous
discussion about world changing stuff like "which are the five
best films ever made?".
would like to thank Naik and Alanah very much for their hospitality,
a great supper and for giving us a bed to sleep in for the night.
It was a memorable visit. All the best Naik for the future. You
obviously have what it takes to overcome the problems being put
in your path.
getting a nights sleep and a final meet up with Pondson, we were
back off to Henley for the last couple of days of our trip, then
it was a dash down to Portsmouth and a onto a much larger ferry
(Pont Avon) for the trip back to Santander in what turned out to
be a flat calm. While we were having an early breakfast, we saw
two pods of dolphins playing around in the water. Later PG spotted
one right next to the ship rolling through the side wake.
approach to Santamder was much more senic than the one up to Portsmouth.
First we passed a lighthouse on a small island, then a headland
with some impressive building, before docking right opposite the
main part of the town.
weather had got colder again and we set about preparing for the
next seasons olive crop by pruning some of the trees we have already
worked on for a couple of years. We are still waiting for the project
book for our house at No. 11 Ave Catalunya, so it is going to be
another couple of months before we get started on pouring concrete.
We have just had a geotechnical survey done, which establishes what
foundations we will need to ensure the casa doesn't slide down the
hillside in the first shower of rain. As you would expect, they
will have to be deeper than we had hoped, but as long as they are
solid, thats OK.
Pondgirl stopped on the way through the village to get these pictures
of the village cats waiting patiently for a food handout.
month we want to get back to pruning our trees that are on terraces
further up the hill and have not yet been touched. It will be hard