Pera – Mikki’s place to Stay
Bertie Barkworthy Quote:
Nick wakes up and says “I’m making omelettes for breakfast”.. OK says I, “with lemon and sugar, or Jam” says he… “Really?” says I – kept it going for quite a while before he realised he actually meant to make pancakes not omelettes….. In any case, they were delicious!
Especially with the lemons we picked from the trees yesterday, and a drizzle of that gorgeous Rosemary honey! The moka pot was kept busy too – a great start to the day. We’re going to cycle into town today with Bert. We decide its quite hazy and cool this morning and wear jeans…. we’re about to leave and as a little ray of sunshine appears we both don shorts! Hopefully the sun will put in a better appearance later… We set off to cycle into town, then tried our luck at the bar with internet – no good – no wifi signal, but chatted to Andy the gardener for a bit. We cycled into the village – kicking ourselves that this really was a Monday morning and instead of work we were cycling along in the sunshine without a care in the world other than getting some bread and milk for supplies!!!
Poor Bertie got besieged by the local neighbourhood tough dogs…. never seen Nick quite so aggressive with dogs – he albut threw one of them away from Bertie! between the two of them Nick and Bert made a swift getaway! I packed our little cycle bags with the shopping and caught up with them on the way back.
We stopped at the bar to see if wifi signal was available – success! Sat for a while checking internet for emails and faceburp – then got asked to move for the hairdresser! Sure enough, my little wifi station’s painting was replaced with a mirror, and the first customer took her seat and snipping commenced! Only haircuts on offer – otherwise I’d have had highlights done! Had a brief messenger chat with my boss Caroline, and a promise to talk on Wednesday when she’s not so busy! One small beer and then back to unpack the shopping. Saw our Belgian friends from the party on Saturday, and we were invited to them for a couple of glasses of chilled rose and a natter… very civilised! We returned to the Blobbybus for lunch – salad, chicken, the last of my iberico chorizo and some more padron peppers… I’m addicted to them – but I’ve yet to find a hot one!
Spent an hour thinking about (and redesigning in our heads) the layout of Blobby’s table. It really doesn’t leave any room in the living area to walk around – we have to perform this quite elaborate dance if either of us wants to move to the other end of the bus at any time – involving sliding and/or revolving of the table – it’s quite balletic when we get it right – and a bit of a calamity when we don’t! That’s when glasses get broken and tempers frayed. So we have the blueprints for a summer project perhaps! Then chill while the sun still shines.
Sat and blogged and downloaded pictures to the hard drive, then the bar called us at about 6 – just the one then! Our illustrious leader spots a backgammon board on top of the tallest cupboard in the bar… Iza (about 4’10” and dauntless) searches for her special step and retrieved it. It was a bit dusty so having given it a bit of a spruce up she handed it over. 2 drinks became 3 and Nick offered me a ‘best of 3’ match. He took the first, I took the rest. Pat – a tall grey chap says “that’s my board – play on, you’ll end up as part of a little tournament!” Apparently he plays for imaginary money – and owes his backgammon partner about 35,000 euros! That partner turned out to be the English electrician who has been poorly with man flu since our arrival… a nice guy with blond dreads whose girlfriend works the bar and the kitchen when it’s open. We met Tripper – the monkey-nut eating dog! She was very cute – reminded us very much of a little dog we know called Brillo!
Her owner threw her monkey nuts and she very deftly crunched them and extracted the peanuts – leaving the shells all over the floor. We offered Bert one or two – he wasn’t quite so successful – he just chewed the lot up and left everything on the floor!
Some of the happy punters were going out tonight for PiriPiri in a local restaurant – 12 euros including the minibus transport – but we’re all piripiri’d out!
Mikki brought Peter the parrot out to say hi to everyone… he was more interested in trying to remove her specs! With promises for future backgammon games made, we returned back to the bus for homemade cassoulet with creamy mash and buttered gourgettes…. bloody yummy! Watched Hall Pass on tv…. more than a few proper chuckles there….!
Pera (Mikki’s Place)
Woke at 8am watched the sun rise – 6 degrees this morning but what a beautiful clear sky! Within a couple of hours the temperature was 10 degrees higher and really warm in the sun… up went the sunshade today – spent more time trying to tidy up photographs on the computer and blog writing – hoping to upload today if I can get a good enough signal… I still have to resize all the photos though…. it takes ages! A couple of games of backgammon would be nice though! Walked Bert around the site while Nick showered. Nick rode down (sans Bert) to try and find a supermarket because he’s decided he wants to BBQ today… Bert pined VERY loudly for him for about 20 minutes – before sulking in his bed to await his return. Apparently the journey to Aldi is incredibly steep – and Nick returned quite knackered!
But the burgers were delicious – the strange orange rinded Barrado cheese melted very nicely on top too! Nick went down to the bar with Bert about 7pm, while I play again with the computer… thinking I might resize a couple of pics and try uploading the blog if I can get a signal down at the bar…. the signal however, had other ideas! We’ll try again tomorrow morning!
Pera (Mikki’s Place to Stay)
Sat up in bed and smacked my head on an overhead cupboard… great start to the day! Took Bert for a short ablutionary walk around the outside of the site through the almond trees…. met Tripper and her owner Max, and returned back to Blobbybus to find Nick, showered and preparing more pancakes for breakfast – result! Tonight we’re eating down at the restaurant – Arno is cooking Hungarian Goulash, and the 2 course meal with drinks is 10euros… nice! We sat outside reading for a while but as it was a bit overcast we took a leisurely stroll down to the bar to see if we could get a signal – place was empty, signal was on and we managed to upload last week’s blog successfully – until a silver-fox Dutchman decided to fiddle about with the dongle I was connected to and I lost the connection…AAAARGGGHHH! I think the low growl coming from my table might have disconcerted him a little bit – especially when he realised it was me and not the dog! Once disconnected that was my lot, so I packed up and decided to shower and warm up a bit. It was too chilly sitting outside and when it eventually started to rain we adjourned for lunch and a bit of a nap – well, we are “retired” tha knows! We woke up at 6 and got ready to go out for supper. Bertie disgraced himself today, almost garotted himself on his wire trying to attach a couple of passing dogs – I think he’s just in a bad mood today! He got in such a lather we had to shut him inside for a bit to cool down! Now he’s sulking…. we’re not taking him down to the restaurant tonight – a few hours chilling might do him good…
The meal was not bad at all – Salad to start, goulash and mashed potatoes next, a delicious almond cake with cream followed by coffee and a very sweet orange liqueur… and the drink included in the price was a 75cl carafe of wine… not bad for 10euros, and we spent it in nice company, with Lesley Gerald, Ivor and his wife (I can NEVER remember her name), and two friends of theirs from Albufeira who were visiting, Bob (ex Met Police) and his wife Val. Bob and Nick waffled all night; and they invited us to call in to see them in Albufeira if we were passing – which was nice! Arno showed us his special Tequila Apron… enough said… and it was nice to be welcomed back by Bertie. He was missed down at the restaurant and everyone asked after him. We finished the night with a brandy and chocolate milk and popped off to bed!
Our 27th Wedding Anniversary! Makes you think back to the people who were there on the day; how many of them are no longer with us, and how lucky we are to still have each other. Ok, enough of that! It’s a scorchio – Woohoo! Decided to do our washing and booked the machine for 12 oclock. Clockwatched till 11.55 and walked down and loaded the machine cheerfully smiling at the other assembled washerwomen (and men), and left. Only when Iza trotted over did we realise we have been running the whole trip with our Blobbybus clock one hour ahead; and I’d put my washing in the machine at the time a certain French camper was due to do hers!!! What are we like? We don’t even know the time of day – just goes to show that it honestly doesn’t matter at the moment! Nick took Bertie out for a bike ride, and I chilled out. New neighbours appeared in an Aviano, with a bloody great Doberman and a Parrot in it FFS! Oh Dear, Bertie’s aggressive streak this last day or so could get him in a bit of bother here! Did a couple of hours trying to get hold of Caroline with no luck, but at least managed to send a couple of emails and do a bit of work. It became obvious when I went to collect the washing that I’d upset the apple cart with the washing fiasco – although “upsetting the French is alright in my book” says our gardener, Andy! We rigged a washing line on the awning, and everything dried ok. Managed to get another load on about 4 oclock, with any luck it’ll dry a bit before bed. Planning to BBQ tonight – we have just enough salad and potatoes to go with all the meat Nick bought, steak, chicken and belly porki, so we’ll not starve; and a hoarded bottle of champagne appeared and went into the fridge so we’ll have plenty to wash it down. The sun has well and truly come out to play so just chilling with a book for an hour or two is lovely!
We soon realised we not only have a parrot and a Doberman (who ate ALL the pies) next door – there’s also a huge German Shepherd in there – there can’t be much room for the hoomans in there – the lady of the house is buxom to say the very least teehee!
As predicted, Bertie gave them a piece of his mind when they went walkies. We went down to the bar for pre-BBQ drinkies and to order a few chips to go with it (luxury!) and met Douglas and Jackie – new arrivals from Edinburgh in their 25 year old van – they’ve been doing our round trip – but the other way round! It was great to chat with them – they are also writers of blogs, and feeling our pain with the internet situation. We drank too much, waffled too much and agreed to meet up again tomorrow to swap intel. Nick and I returned to the van and started to cook – then Nick went back down to the restaurant to collect our takeaway chips. He took his phone and it updated while he was there – only to find out on Facebook that Sue Wells, someone we had both known for many years and been very fond of had passed away this morning… our anniversary now feels a bit insignificant, and overshadowed by sadness at her passing. We’re thinking of her son, Jamie, and of shared happier times. I returned in tears to the bar to post my condolences and for once, got wifi with no problem. Our meal was late, quiet and reflective. Our champagne went unopened. RIP Sue, RIP xxx
Pera (Mikkis Place to Stay)
A rainy, overcast day – matches our waking mood perfectly really. We tried to dry the last of our washing on a line underneath the awning, but the heavens opened and the wind blew and just managed to get it all in before the heavens opened!
Earlier in the week Nick had noticed the bottom of the door not latching properly and decided to investigate the door to see how he could dismantle it
Covers off, he (and I quote) “modified a few poorly-made bits inside and reshaped the supporting bracketry around the handle so the inner and outer skins would sit together better, adjusted the closing catch brackets and put it all back together”.
Now the door closes properly with minimal effort and without slamming… I love being married to an engineer! As always, Bertie was on hand in an advisory capacity!
We’ve spent the rest of the day with a book and map-covered table looking at where to head off to tomorrow. We’ve decided to leave early, follow the N125 coast road eastwards towards the border with Spain and over into Ayamonte – just see what we see and if anything takes our fancy we’ll stop! If not and the weather stays bad we’ll head for Huelva and Seville.
It’s a shame our last full day here is grey and wet… it’s been a nice week here and we’ve met some real characters along the way. Lesley (Carthago) and Gerald, Ivor (Pilote), Max the Speedos, Mikki and Arno, the three doggies the birds and the parrot; Morgens the steel yacht builder and Douglas and Jackie, and the lovely Iza who has been so sweet to us and little Pinky Nose, to name but a few. It’s a place we would definitely come back to.
Updated the blog and chosen some pictures – if we can get a signal this afternoon/ evening I’ll try to upload it all and then – who knows? Might be a little while till the next one gets done!