Sunday, 30 October 2016

A week in Bolnuevo

Friday 21st October. We arrived here after a short drive from Vera and after checking in and doing the paperwork, leveling the van and hooking up to the electric thought it would be a good idea to stroll into the village to meet up with friends. First stop was Maria's tapas bar where we discovered that Maria and her husband Reyes had now rented the bar out to an Italian lass who had preserved the atmosphere and was offering an Italian menu. So we had a couple of drinks there and a bite to eat and then popped in to Caroline's bar next door where we received a lovely welcome and had another couple of drinks. Next stop The Blues House where Tracey, the owner, gave us another warm welcome and we had another couple of drinks. That was as much as we can remember about Friday.   Saturday 22nd October. We rented a storage facility here last year so we could leave all the stuff we don't need when we are traveling - awnings, tables and chairs, Christmas decorations (?) and other bits and pieces So today we emptied the boot before whizzing round to retrieve our belongings. This entails wandering around a poorly lit warren underneath an apartment block, finding the wobbly ladder and then risking life and limb as I pass things down to Phil whilst avoiding banging my head on the ceiling. Then we cart everything out to the van, load it up and drive back to the site. It's all a bit physical and we had agreed that we'd take a few days to set things up. There was no hurry, after all we're going to be here for a few months. But...... let's just put down the green matting, it won't take long. Well, we might as well erect the safari room.....and so it went on. Six hours later we had our winter home like we wanted it. We also had aching knees, hips and backs and several bruises. What we didn't have, surprisingly, was a cross word between us. After 47years we're working as a team! I even managed to get the waste water outlet fixed - what did we do without silicone?  
A twenty minute walk along the beach is the Oasis bar/restaurant which has live music on a Saturday night - we were too exhausted and settled for a couple of burgers at the Blues House before falling into bed thoroughly exhausted. (Arsenal 0 - 0 Middlesbrough)   Sunday 23rd October. A walk along the beach, up the hill and back again was good; eased the aches and pains. Lunch at (what was) Maria's and then along to the Blues Bar for the live Sunday afternoon music - a great Spanish band - and to meet up with more folk from last year. But no dancing today for us.   Monday 24th October. We didn't do too much today although I had protracted email communications between delfyNET (our WiFi suppliers) and SurfEasy (VPN supplier) - nothing resolved although I learnt a bit more techspeak.   Tuesday 25th October. Can't recall too much about today other than more email nonsense (see above) (Arsenal 2 - Reading 0)   Wednesday 26th October. The 9.50 bus took us in to Puerto de Mazarron for some shopping and a visit to Wimas (an alternative WiFi supplier). Engineer will call tomorrow to see how my system and their's will work together, he will call between 9am and noon. On the way back we stopped at the little local garden centre and bought a few plants to make our winter location a bit more homely. I went to the bar in the evening to watch a dreary Manchester derby game.  
Thursday 27th October. A quiet morning in the warm sunshine waiting for Wimas engineer. On arrival we greet each other with "Good Afternoon". He looks at my equipment and we entertain each other talking about 2.4GHz and 5.0GHz frequencies and my ariel and his antenna. A great chat about Routers and VPN IPSec pass-throughs. We kiss each other and decide we are semi-compatible. I have to go back to the office tomorrow to sign a contract.   Friday 28th October. Back on the bus to Puerto. Bus journeys here are great. In England on buses there are signs instructing you not to talk to the driver or distract him. In Spain it is obligatory to engage the driver in conversation at all times. These conversations are carried out at high volume in order to be heard above the driver's favorite radio station. Forget Duolingo, this is the way to learn Spanish.  The Wimas office manager is a cool guy. We negotiate a reduction in the installation fee as I don't need his router. And I get the first month's service free. And if I'm not happy he'll give me my money back. I check my VPN works with his servers. All is good. I ask when our friend the engineer can call back and do the instillation. Probably tomorrow or on Monday says the cool guy. "I'll leave you with my secretary and she will do the contract thing with you and give you a time for the engineer" We smile and shake hands and he leaves the building. Contracts signed, money paid - "Next Thursday" says his sec. Before I can complain that her boss said..... "Next Thursday morning" she repeats with a solemn shake of her head. Hey-Ho. In the evening we visited a Dutch couple we met last year. We called round at about 6pm to say Hi and left about 11pm after a beer or two.   Saturday 29th October. It was a bit chilly with a stiff wind when we set off for our walk along the paseo this morning but by mid morning the sun had burst through and its been a gorgeous day today. We've had good weather all week but I think today was the hottest day. We did a bit of shopping in the nearby Spar shop and then went for a coffee and looked at each other and wondered where the last week had gone. Tempus fugit when you're enjoying yourselves eh? Back to the van and after Phil cooked some delicious bacon and eggs it was time for the main event of the day. I strolled to Carolines Bar while Phil strolled for a beach day. Unfortunately I fell amongst bad company after watching the football and returned home a little later than expected.  The campsite here has a special area for the super large vans and this year there are about a dozen of them, mostly German. There is one English van amongst them and he is flying this flag:  
(Sunderland 1 - Arsenal 4)   Pat        

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