Saturday, 30 January 2010

First long stopover.........

Jan 23 onwards......Benecasim

Left Vilanova on saturday morning and took the pretty route, mainly on the N340 but occasionally on the very new A7, which confused the Tomtom when it occasionally petered out in the midlle of nowhere. The Tomtom knew it was there, the signs said it was there and we could see that it was there; unfortunately someone kept barricading sections off which resulted in navigating by the sun to relocate a road going in roughly the right direction. The trip was otherwise uneventful except for 1)the 44-ton lorry on our carriageway but pointing towards us, having demolished the central reservation for 100 yards and apparently having most of its tyres replaced 2) the 44 ton lorry who overtook us at 60mph on a single carriagway and caused an oncoming car to take to the mercifully provided emergency strip at the side of the road. Even though I stood on the brakes to give him as much room as possible to pull in, the lorry remained steadfastly in the opposite lane and must have caused at least one driver to require a new set of clean underwear and 3) the sudden appearance of a police road block in the middle of nowhere. The old fake-police shakedown being the stuff of legends in the travelling community, I briefly considered the option of a handbrake turn followed by smoking rubber on the tarmac as we headed back the way we had just come but reality kicked in and we stopped dutifully with all doors locked and finger hovering on the tracker panic alarm button. I was reassured by the fact that we were actually in a queue of traffic and not alone otherwise I might not have been so sanguine. We were, however, waved through with the peremptory jerking of several sub-machine guns and waving of pistols and my quick glance to the right showed what appeared to be the imminent summary execution of various suspects lying on the ground with their hands cuffed behind them. I wanted to remonstrate with the officers but the GF thought it best if I shut-up and got the hell out of there. So I did.

So we arrived at Bonterra Park in Benecasim. We are only here because when we first talked about wintering in Spain, everybody mentioned this place at least once so the GF insisted that we had a look......we had attempted to stop here for a couple of nights last year on the way back but it was a) full for the next 3 months and b) only taking bookings for a week or more by march. It is large, extremely efficiently run, clean and tidy,excellent facilities, completely impersonal and packed with Brits who have been coming for the last 30 years and stay for up to 6 months. A new arrival is like a magnet to them. Their pitches have little pots of flowers, signs with their names on,and worst of all, little extra tents like garden sheds that they keep the sunloungers and BBQ in.
The satellite dishes are enormous and the collective sound of the theme tunes to Corrie and Enders is like the muezzin calling the faithfull to prayer!

Anyway, the weather is unseasonably chilly although after an overcast couple of days the sun is now shining and the sky is blue again. Overnight temperatures can drop severely.

You may have gathered that I don't particularly like this place. There is nothing nearby to vist that I can discover and if the weather is not condusive to shorts,sunloungers and a cold beer in the hand then we ought to be somewhere else that is. I don't know if we will see out the fortnight here ( thank god we were a week late starting and did'nt have to stay for 3 weeks) . Nick & Barbera are back on the road with a new turbo fitted and will have sailed passed on the way to Conil. We may join them sooner rather than later.

Friday 29th..... Sun is shining, shorts are out with sticks of celery, sandals with brown woollen socks (except yous truly). By bus to Castellono .. 5.40€ return for both us, 30 minute journey....where we admired pleasant town and had nice lunch , 3 courses, 1/2 litre wine, water, coffee for 20€ most reasonable. Flamenco sat.night in the restaurant. Have discovered some very drinkable Rioja at 1.75€

1 comment:

  1. Spanish police road blocks are best navigated with an enormous false moustache, a sombrero and a Mexican accent, so I've been told...