Soggy Córdoba

With the arrangement to meet up at the Aire in Córdoba vaguely set for “lunchtime”, Jo and I arrived from opposite directions within minutes of one another and had no problems parking side by side. An auspicious start to our few days stay. Unfortunately the weather continued as it has for most of the winter, very inclement and disappointingly unconducive for photography in a very photographic location.

Umbrella’d we explored the streets and monuments of the city …

The christian cathedral was built within the vast moorish mosque

The roman bridge and the decorative plinth to a monument

Jo was very taken with an artist’s studio and waterboarded him for details of his techniques …


Wall art

We both enjoyed the many patios, indoor courtyards, some of which you could visit gratis, others in cafe’s costa cuppa coffee – but we were too mean to splash out for the “tour” …


Our evening of dinner with entertainment thankfully, did not force liquidation of our assets. Remembering the size of Spanish starters, we shared one (pumpkin soup) and also dessert (chocolate gateaux). Jo had a salmon main course and I, a lamb timbale. All in all an excellent meal – but the exhibition of Flamenco dancing that followed was beyond excellent, aside from the fact that as a Flamenco “virgin” I was totally awestruck, I was informed by a Spanish fellow diner that the Troupe was one of the best she’s seen.


We stayed for 3 nights and but for the unrelenting wetness would’ve stayed longer; still always leave with a reason to return, and there was still plenty left to see next time …

🙂 🙂 🙂

Nor any drop to drink …

I’m slowly moving towards Córdoba to meet up with Jo for a few days – it’ll be nice to see her and sight-see with company again – and I’ve stopped at a little place called Berlanga. It appealed when I read about it in the Aires guide as it’s at a small nature park/free zoo on the outskirts of town. I hesitated to drive onto the designated parking spot for Autocaravannas as there appear to be some improvements being made and the normal entrance was closed and the diversion was via a muddy track. On finding the parking was not hardstanding I drove straight back out. I have mentioned the rain here haven’t I? In my experience sandy soil, frequent monsoon type downpours and 3.5 ton of truck do not make a happy mix. I had visions of having to be towed out. The place was deserted – did I mention the rain? – I parked in the ordinary car park.

LWD and I had a wander round; it’s an attractive, very tranquil place. They’ve diverted a culvert from the main river to make a pond before returning the water over a waterfall and back to the river. Dozens of birds were low flying over the pond feeding on the insects. We mooched until … it started raining again.

Overnight we had … wait for it … torrential rain which continued throughout the morning. LWD snuggled up with me all morning whilst I read in bed. During a short dry spell we went out for another mooch around midday and I was glad I’d picked up the camera …


The water level had dropped a couple of metres by late afternoon but it’s raining (hard) again now. I’m pretty certain we’re not in danger of floating away tho’ …

Glug, glug, glug …

🙂 🙂 🙂

The rain in Spain

I’m getting a little fed up with wind, rain, thunder storms and gloomy skies – this is not what I signed up for.

Despite the weather gods’ tantrums Merida proved to be a delight. Following my recce of the first afternoon, I determined not to let the elements spoil my sightseeing and the frequent heavy showers didn’t dampen anything other than my clothes.


The Roman amphitheatre and the theatre stand side by side at the top of the hill …


The Temple of Diana is half way down one of the main streets …

The Alcazaba which started life as a Roman fort, took a new life after restoration by the Visigoths and finally became a Moorish citadel before falling into ruin …

The Roman bridge, adjacent to the Alcazaba, across the R. Guardiana (the very same that forms the border between Spain and Portugal further south) has not suffered from flood damage as has the bridge at Avignon and is therefore superior at 732 metres long …

Lusitania as it was called in Roman times boasts two aquaducts of which the St Lázaro (tho’ it wouldn’t’ve been called that at the time) is the better preserved …


Storks (not butter) nest on pillars all along the aqueduct Los Milagros.


Spot the sunny snap – there is one!!

Well it’s sou’westers and galoshes on for another LWD walk then …

🙂 🙂 🙂

International Womens’ Day 08/03/18

I celebrated with my Spanish sisters in Merida!


There was a wonderful energising atmosphere in the Plaza d’España as women and quite a few men gathered. A super exhibition of photos of Spanish women posing as famous feminists was tucked under cover in an arcade but the rain wasn’t dampening anyone’s spirits and the turnout for such a small city was impressive. The question that was asked on the tablecloth was – What does feminism mean to you? My answer is, unsurprisingly, the one in English!

I felt a truly international woman …

🙂 🙂 🙂

Goodbye, and thanks for all the drinks Emma!

Storm Emma confined us to barracks, we hung on, and on, and on, at Espiche where we were sheltered from the worst of it. LWD wasn’t that much interested in going out, neither was I, well apart from socialising with old and new friends in the bar and or restaurant! It was great to see Anne and Bob again from the last time I was there, Penny and David who I’d met at Pinar at Christmas turned up, and lovely to meet Patricia and Jim, whom I hope to meet again when I go to Scotland in the early autumn. Who’d’ve thought I’d get such a busy social life from driving around Europe?

Less beach

Half the sand from the beach at Luz was washed away thanks to Emma. The tide lines have altered considerably.

Escape from incipient alcoholism came after I saw a forecast that the weather was better in Spain and LWD and I headed back across the border – all my playmates were also gone or going. The weather however did not play ball – it was a BBC forecast so no surprise there then. All bets were off and I just made it up as I went along. Manta Rota, last stop in Portugal was beautiful, the Aire was free and there were really great board walks along to the dunes and beach for LWD.

The beach at Manta Rota

The campsite at Isla Christina, due to be my first stop in Spain, however looked dismal and dark with the inevitable pine trees blotting out light. I pressed on – to Seville! I went to an Aire that I knew had a workshop. A mechanic there changed my blown headlight bulb. It’s a relief to be legal again, and to be able to see …

After a very noisy evening and early morning, we got peace from midnight til six a.m. from whatever they were doing on the docks there; it sounded like tons of metal being thrown around. Yes I know Seville is well inland, but the river Guardiana is navigable and a lot of “stuff” gets shipped to the port there and unfortunately that’s the area this particular Aire is sited. At least  I now know how to change R0X1’s headlight bulbs – trouble is I’m too short to reach where I need to get to do it myself anyway …

So where to go next? Forecast is more of the wet stuff in every direction until next week.

So we’ve headed north and we’re now at an Aire in Merida to visit it’s many Roman ruins. Well I am; LWD is not allowed in and will have to stay home tomorrow, but I did walk her round the town this afternoon for a quick glimpse of what she’ll be missing.


Raincoats on …

🙂 🙂 🙂


I don’t want anyone living in the frozen wastes of Northern Europe to think that those of us in the southernmost areas are getting off scot free. For the past 72hrs and for the next 10 days we have and will continue to get howling gales and torrential downpours. We have had interrupted electrical supply as water has got into fuse boxes but luckily the site isn’t subject to flooding. On seeing the forecast several days ago I had a COP and decided to remain on site rather than move off into the hills and go off grid – except we periodically go off grid here, that’s irony for you!

This area is also the subject of a severe coastal event red weather warning. Now I have absolutely not a scoobies what a severe coastal event is, even so I’m glad to be about a mile inland and the other side of the hill. If and when aforementioned SCE occurs, I will acknowledge it in this blog. In the meantime, answer on a postcard please if you, dear regular reader, have any idea, what an SCE might be.

LWD, not keen on wetness of any kind, as my regular reader knows, and even less keen on ROR (too noisy) has not been impressed by storm Emma’s wind, rain or thunder and lightning so far. Neither have many of this site’s temporary residents who appear to be leaving in droves today. They have obviously not looked at the forecasts for further away – MOS.

You only have to look at Portugal’s reservoirs to appreciate how much this rain is needed – it would take months of rain to bring them up to even half full …


On the bright side I have FFP due to arrive …



COP – Change Of Plan

SCE – Severe Coastal Event

LWD – Little White Dog

ROR – Rain on Roof

MOS – More of Same

FFP – Friends From Pinar

TLA – Three Letter Acronym


🙂 🙂 🙂