Thursday, 31 March 2016

Day 25

The mountains were beautiful yesterday evening as the sun went down.
This morning we woke up to find ourselves in the Encanyissada wildlife reserve.  It's an area that reminds me very much of the Fylde coast in NW England but instead of lettuce here they grow rice.
Anyhow the process favours the birds who are everywhere.
We got the big bikes off and went for a "big for us" bike ride of about 10 miles
The tracks were great and the company was better
We went up in this bird hide.....not much hiding to be done but we got a good view
Of these two
And him
The fields are being worked very hard at the moment, I was told that in a week or two they will be flooded.
There are drainage sluices all over the place to achieve the flooding but every so often you come across one of these
No need for an Aldi for oranges or lemons if you live here.
When we got back to the truck we decided it was a little early for lunch so moved down the coast to Pensicola.  What a great decision, we found an Aire about 50 meters from the beach
With a great looking castle at the end of it
We rode around the bay and climbed up to the castle but couldn't get in as the last ticket was 5.30, looks like that could be on the agenda tomorrow.  We did however get a chance to explore the old town and the fishing harbour.
No posh cruisers here this is a working harbour
But it still looks good

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Day 24

Well I was up with the lark this morning washed and showered then down to the laundrette I spotted yesterday with the bedding and the washing.  I found a cracking little bread shop down one of the back streets that did a baguette and three croissants for €2....winner
We left Barcelona and headed down the coast finding a great stop for lunch at Les Botigues de Mar, no I had never heard of it either!
The sea was only about 50 meters away so after lunch we went for a walk along the beach.
When we got back it looked so interesting in the other direction
I got the Bromptons out and we cycled into town, it was a quiet little place with some great rocky coast at the far end
Later we moved on to our stopping place for tonight at the camper stop at Amposta
We had a great view of the sea and the mountains through the window

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Day 23 Barcelona, wish I could sing it like Freddy

Oh well up nice and early today for a day sightseeing in Barcelona. We spent the morning walking around and getting our bearings.
Then up for the main event, fish lunch in the best restaurant in the Boqueria highly recommended by Emma and Matt
First we had to get was rammed
Lynn decided to get a picture of me at the entrance
Who they are I have no idea!!
Emma insisted I should start by sampling the who am I to refuse when it comes to food 😜
The range of produce in here is only matched by the number of people 
After a short wait we managed to get a seat at Barcentral...they don't stock fish but get it direct from the fish market as you order.
We ordered a large plate of mixed seafood with a plate of mixed grilled veg and a bowl of bread.  Oh and a few local beers to wash it all down.
We were sat next to a very interesting American gentleman called Enricas (I hope I spell it correctly) who shared stories about his travels around the world.  So good food, good alcohol and great company and I was in heaven.
We then headed up to the Sagrada Familia which we also wanted to visit, unfortunately all of the tickets had been sold for today.... Something for my next trip to Barcelona.
I do have some comments on the place though, which may be made to look foolish when I get inside and find out more.  It's bloody weird!!! This may be an "emperors new clothes moment" I don't see the point of pineapples and grapes being painted in at the top of spires and the whole thing looks misshapen to me.  I can also see why it has taken so long to build when I saw two workmen carrying two bricks each climbing the same ladder one after another.
We finished off the day out by searching the old town for a tapas bar that is famous for being the place where I got Ken "my father in law" to eat octopus.  It would be rude to pass such an auspicious place by so we called in for a few beers and some Calamari Romana
This is the place the locals go to after work.....not an English voice spoken!
When we got back to the truck a French man and his wife came in for a chat.  They had travelled the world in their land cruiser camper for eight and a half years.  It was both great and inspiring to hear their stories about travelling in Africa, Asia and the Americas.  They are having a pause to spend some time with grandchildren then hope to be on the road again.  As he said "this is life"
Well as I write this I am just finishing the goats cheese with lime and herbs " remember that from day 15 and a nice little appellation controle is good and I bet that little cheese woman in the French Alps wouldn't believe I was eating her cheese in Barcelona.

Monday, 28 March 2016

Day 22 Viva Espana

I woke up this morning to the sound of a raging fire all around the truck!!
Turned out to be the farmer next door getting rid of some rubbish.
After packing filling and emptying the truck....."you need to know, to know" we headed off down the coast.
I found another stunning quiet place to stop for breakfast
Then this happened
A group of pristine VW and Porches turned up, they were all driving beautiful cars but were more interested in looking at and hearing about my truck.
When they had all gone I moved to a slightly better spot and we found out we were in the Sentier Marine Reserve and there was a way marked walk to be done.  We headed off walking towards the headland
But decided to call in at a small beach on the way
Where again I demonstrated my prowess at big face rock climbing
This was the climb back up to the path
The path then wound its way through the vineyards which run right down to the sea.
There was an interesting article on their history so rather than re type it I took a photo
Whilst regarding the dire warnings
All walked out we returned to the truck to find three young cyclists admiring the beast.  They had cycled all the way from Essen in just 3 weeks. We then followed them around the coast and into Spain.  It's amazing how you just cross a mark in the road and everything instantly changes signs, road behaviour and architecture.
We are now settled in for the night on a street just off La Ramblas in Barcelona.

Sunday, 27 March 2016

Day 21

Decided to get the big bikes off for a jaunt around St Cyprien today
This was Lynn running off with my baguette on the pink cycle track, they were all this colour separate from the paths and running in all directions
We found the one that led to the beach, not many sun worshippers today......being Easter Sunday they may all be worshipping somewhere else.  
We had a good cycle around the harbour and then headed back to the truck to sort out Lynn's breaks and do a few other jobs
I made an upper level storage for the skis.

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Day 20

We had the morning in Cap D Agde then drifted around the coast to the point where the roads to Andora and Spain meet.  We couldn't make our mind up which way to go so settled onto a little site for a short break.
Sun shining and Easter Sunday tomorrow I think we will settle here for a day or two....we have been busy enjoying ourselves, it can be hard workπŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ·πŸ·πŸ˜œ