Plastic surgery completed

A huge welcome home to R0X1 following “surgery” to her rear nearside (UK) corner and replacement grey waste pipe. At the same time she had a service and MOT and is once more fit to travel. Many thanks to Richard and Brian at my local garage in Langport.

The BFF has also just come out of hospital having had surgery so next week R0X will get a long overdue run out – down to Cornwall so I can help relieve R’s boredom – she really doesn’t do “take it slowly” at all well.

Tomorrow morning festive decorations will appear chez Crosby/Mepstead, looking forward to seeing all my baubles and my Santa collection again. One of the nicest things about this joined up multi generational household is the huge amount of baubles, ornaments, trees and lights we jointly own, all of which will be on display. Then late afternoon we’ll go into Langport for the market, fireworks and lights switch on, hopefully amongst the food concessions there’ll be a mulled wine stall …

Pix will follow early next week.

🙂🙂🙂

Change of plans (# 42,969)

My regular reader may remember bullet point 4 in a previous blog, “Adjustments” when I declared that a smaller Moho would be in my travelling future.

Several months and a restful, well since I finished the unpacking and sorting it’s been restful, period of reflection back in the West Country and I find that I have absolutely no desire to sell R0X1 and downsize. I will however, bear in mind time constraints on my breakdown insurance abroad to ensure no further “Arrogant Macho Peacock”  occurrences; which experience knocked my confidence sufficiently to cause all the self doubts I’d been having, well that and a four and a half month bout of sinusitis.

The sinusitis ended very abruptly one morning in September when on getting out of bed I suddenly had a moment of dizziness and nausea. I controlled it, sorted The Smart One out for school and then went back upstairs to bed as I felt decidedly unwell. After a violent bout of vomiting the dizziness cleared and I felt better. A few days later I realised my sinuses had been pain-free for over 72 hours without sniffing drugs … and nary a twinge since. 🎶Halleluja! Now that my sinuses are pain free, Halleluja! Halleluja! Halle-e – lu-ja!🎶 (with a chorus of apologies to G F Handel)

The parts for R0X have been sitting in her underpart patiently waiting to be fitted. I’ve found a garage in Langport, the owner of which is very friendly and he and his wife have done some serious motorhoming; R0X will be having her new back corner and grey wastepipe fitted there, along with an MOT and service at a reasonable price in just a few weeks . And of course she’ll have to have a little test run after … probably down to see the Bezzies as poor R is virtually confined to barracks with a serious knee problem, the need of a replacement for which is urgent (no news to us) according to the consultant Orthopod. Having sold their old VDub, R&S were hoping to be making their first trip abroad in their new-to-them campervan early next year but that’s had to go on hold; R is, as always, very philosophical about it and looking forward to being able to do the trip, and many more, without pain at a later date. [She should also consider changing her name to Metal Micky or RoboCop, as she will after this have had both hips replaced, a hip replacement replaced and both knees replaced … my bionic mate!]

Good luck my Friend x

Half term next week and I’m off to plague Big Bruv and help him drink his gin …

“Reflections back in the West Country”

🙂 🙂 🙂

Think pink and positive (for K and N)

Two and a half years ago when I was in El Berro, as my regular reader may recollect, I got into conversation with the owner of the small village store. The conversation was in French as she didn’t speak English and I don’t speak Spanish. She told me that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer and had started chemotherapy. Her hair was thinning, she was feeling horrible and was quite tearful. We hugged as I left the shop and I wished her all the best and have thought of her many times since.

A few days ago K was  very shocked and upset. She told me that one of her friends has just been diagnosed with breast cancer. N is due to start treatment tomorrow.

This morning needing one or two groceries I nervously went back to the shop hoping for the best, dreading the worst. Thankfully, there was Madame, behind the counter, looking very well with lustrous long black hair! Her treatment was successful and all is currently well with her recovery. We hugged again – several times.

There is always hope … think pink …

Cactus in bloom outside restaurant in El Berro. Only 24 hours between buds and flower images.

🙂 🙂 🙂

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.

Merida

Raincoats on …

🙂 🙂 🙂

Bacon butties and fizz

LWD was pronounced “improving” by the vet on Friday morning and we hot tyred along the much improved N125 west to Luz. The Portuguese are the latest country to have caught the English roundabout disease and as well as ironing the road surface they’ve added loads of the damned things.

I arrived at my hosts nearly a month late and luckily they didn’t hold it against me. Linda and Trev’s springer is  dead ringer for BB’s Sally, identical features, they both half close their eyes when content, brown fur growing longer and rougher than the white, hardly surprising then I was struggling to remember to call her Ruby; definitely related to Sally. Trev very kindly researched solar panels for me and I’ve decided which I’m having. I did think about getting it delivered out here but currently I would have had to have taken the side sofa apart every time I wanted to plug it into the leisure battery, not an option, so I’ll wait til I get back. (BB got a tiny little electrical job for you in the summer …)

Linda and I managed to natter away a couple of days!

 

Monday morning, and we had breakfast of bacon butties and fizz whilst sitting on the very warm patio before I left. They’re back off to UK this week as Linda’s having her second hip replaced in a week or so. It was super to see them and I had a great time, thanks guys.

 

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Bacon butty and fizz breakfast on the sun-drenched patio

Arriving my pitch at the campsite at Espiche and manoeuvering on to the levellers I managed to overshoot and bash R0X1’s left hand rear corner AGAIN, leaving a small amount of red glass on the ground. Waste of money to do anything other than gaffer tape it until I can afford to get distance sensors put on (and anyway the lights still work). There was also a bit of a Hokey Cokey with a camp fridge/freezer until I realised that for some reason the circuit breaker had tripped and that was why my fridge/freezer wasn’t working.

Perhaps I should rethink my dark night policy and not continue to cover up the little “I’m working” lights on the main panel … I’m sure the lovely lad who danced the Hokey Cokey to my pitch and back with the fridge/freezer would have appreciated it!

🙂 🙂 🙂

A, B or S?

On Monday I dragged myself away from Pinar and my amazing social life. I was out nearly every afternoon and/or night for wine or gin o’clock most of my stay there, and that hasn’t happened in a couple of decades.

Drunken Pinar People

So what could follow that? Well Seville could. I now find myself tossing up which city I prefer Barcelona or Seville … and then there’s Amsterdam …

Unfortunately I saw an unpleasant incident yesterday. I was waiting for several horses and traps with tourists aboard to trot past before crossing a narrow street. Suddenly there was a bit of a commotion and I looked over to see another horse and trap with only the driver on board approaching at what seemed like breakneck speed – probably only a canter rather than a full on gallop – the driver whipping his horse like blazes. Overtaking the other traps to the startled looks of their drivers, passengers and onlookers, he entered a slight bend, the poor horse slipped on the cobbles and fell to it’s side. The driver just hauled at the reins and whipped the horse again until it got up, and with that he was gone. Everyone around me looked as shocked and upset as I felt.

Apart from that Seville has delighted me once more. LWD has suffered several forced marches around parks, along riverside walks and city streets. It’s a hard life for her!

Ancient

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and Modern

Tomorrow’s route takes us into Portugal. The weather is settled fair tho’ it’s cold at night and the mornings are chilly.

 

Maria Luisa Park

🙂 🙂 🙂

P.S. I think it’s Barcelona by a whisker (simply because of Gaudi) with Seville and Amsterdam in joint second.

Beach ban and convivial company

Silly moo LWD is not a happy puppy; she does not learn.

Despite me politely suggesting she stop, she’s been rubbing her head around on the beach, grazed her ear on the sand and the inevitable has happened. Luckily I have some ear drops and, bribed with treats, she’s not making too much fuss about their administration . This morning her ear is not as red and hot. Hopefully we won’t have to make a trip to the vet for antibiotics.

So the beach is banned and yesterday we had a wander round the streets of Conil-de-Frontera. Its another white Andalucian hill town but with the added attraction of being a seaside town too. Temperature was in the 20℃s – what I have to endure whilst my family and friends in UK and northern Europe have Storm Eleanor to delight them!

My regular reader may have spotted that I’ve recently acquired a busy social life. Since arriving at Pinar San José, as well as the obvious socialising with the Bezzies whilst they were in residence, I’ve made new campals by the dozen, or more. I’ve joined small parties for dog walks, larger gatherings for afternoon drinks, live music, lunches etc. – in fact staying on here for a rest has turned out to be quite exhausting!

Last nights outing was to see the Christmas lights in Vejer. I wasn’t too keen on being the thirteenth member of the party but thankfully I wasn’t the unlucky thirteenth. We had a good wander and admired the shops (all open ’til eight/nine p.m. – this is Spain!) and the lights were beautiful. The Thirteen then popped into a bar, rearranged all the tables and chairs to their own satisfaction and flummoxed the poor barman/waiter/cook who was on his own, expecting a quiet Tuesday evening no doubt. After ordering 13 drinks, we considered, to great mirth, ordering 13 different meals but decided that might be a joke too far.

🙂 🙂 🙂