Monday, 28 November 2016


We leave Keith & Chris at the Delta and head off towards Valencia but first seeking out an Aire not used by us previously but promised much
Alas it was not to be as the heavens opened up and it rained heavily as we entered the hills near Ondo
Torrential rain followed and when we made the stopover it was clear there was no way we'd get out of the rapidly flooding site at the bottom of a rather steep access road next morning

Common sense prevailed but the only way to turn the rig round was to drive another 8km to find a turning point. This meant even more ascending up the flooded hillside roads and when we saw a series of rocks fall in front of the van as we travelled things got very twitchy inside the cab...

We made it thankfully down to a flat industrial estate where we found a 'quiet' spot for the night to ride it out. Unfortunately things got worse...
We were safe and not in danger from mudslides, rockfalls and the like but the lightning and very loud thunder arrived coupled with very heavy rain. Storms rage for a half hour or so and then they move on. Not this one. It stayed above us for the entire night shaking the van with shock waves from the thunder and lighting things up like the 5th November...

Next day I inspected what was now a clean van & trailer thanks to the rain and we moved off tiredly to Valencia Camper Park

Max takes us in to Valencia amidst grey skies and we park up and wander the lovely streets. This is the Mercado where its closed today but usually home to a very lively and bustling indoor market

The Bank of Valencia

Fine embroidery & lacework

Even the roller shutters are interesting...

Paella pans on display

'High tea' was beer and tapas at a favourite bar of ours in the old sector

Bullring & rail station

Really like it here. Classy architecture blends well with modern shops

Rounding off the day we take in some local brew which hits the spot nicely after the trauma of the twilight hours...

Friday, 25 November 2016

Delta del Ebro

We meet up briefly with Keith & Chris at Palamos and over a coffee discuss battle plans for the next few weeks
We then relocate to a favourite winery stop of ours east of Barcelona where we intend to sit out a thunderstorm coming our way

We arrive in sunshine so take a wander in to the local village where we discover that the old guy selling rioja at silly prices has closed down....
A nifty bit of enquiry work reveals another seller and we are soon tipsy on our stressful task of deciding which of the VERY cheap sherries we should go with

8 litres of shopping later we disguise our swag in the bag intended for a veg purchase and saunter off like school kids back to the van
I have to say that 2 litres of this is intended for a chum in Portugal when we see him but for the rest of our haul we fear greatly it might not make it that far!

The thunderstorm arrives bang on time but terrifies us in the van as we endure a half hour of hail attack resulting in some minor, but repairable, roof top damage

Next day we are off to Del Ebro with the addition of some all-essential gin glasses and accoutrements courtesy of Carefour
Of course the gin stock had to be appraised too...

After a really peaceful night on the Delta we break out the bikes and go exploring

A twitcher's paradise this place

Paddy fields

Herons at the social club

Looking out to sea..

Ah ha, our pink friends are spotted from afar

The centre section of the Delta is a huge nature reserve and teeming with wildlife

I hope she knows where she's going..

I'll go for Heron Keith, the little one I'm not sure of, Doh!

Next day we make a friend in this noisy fella..
First milk, then canned sardines. Anything left for me Nina?

Look who turns up and takes us bird spotting!
Or rescuing to be more precise

Learning what Ospreys look like and rescuing Coots drives up a thirst

A pose taken for Paul in Thailand...

After stupidly cheap rounds at the beer bar the ladies crank it up at a more fashionable gaff in a nearby village with stupidly expensive G & Ts and Keith bravely hands over the hard earned euros. Still, we made up for it with replicas homemade later at the van and a fine chilli/antipasta combo created by the Gin girls....