Helen Findlay

My adventures in Middle Europe and The Colonies. This blog contains my own views and opinions and does not represent those of my employers, or any other organisation with which I am involved. Remember, just because it isn't Singletrackworld, doesn't mean it isn't shite !

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Feliz Navidad

Merry Christmas from Santa Cactus !!

Love from Helen

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Just had brilliant weekend up in the Espuna, 30 odd guys from an mtb club in Cordoba were staying in the campsite for the long weekend so came out on Saturday. They were really good riders and some of them even spoke English, was a good laugh, and I set my stall out early by kicking them all on the first climb so they were impressed. Not sure if that means that I am fit or they aren’t.
Sunday we went hiking up in the higher peaks which was superb, lovely clear day and some quite technical scrambling. Not so much English spoken in that group but was fun anyway, and saves me the bother of polite conversation !! But it was lucky I have some experience of that, with the language barrier you don’t really know what to expect sometimes. All I really got was that we would be out for four hours and there would be an opportunity for beer at the end. Took plenty food water and clothes and needed all of it.
Petra arrived last night, so will be over there tonight to look at all her pictures from the trek in Nepal. She bought the bad weather with her, the temperature really dropped yesterday I actually needed longs, a roubaix and a buff out on the bike. Its raining today so will take it easy.

The picture at the start of this is from the top of the climb on Sunday’s trek, and I think the guy in the picture is called Pedro. The Cordoba mtb club had “Agamo y Lomo” on their shirts which I think is something about sheep ?? Not sure, anyway have invited them all over to Scotland next year, traded email addresses with some of the English speakers, they sounded quite keen.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Lets call the whole thing off

It’s December and the start of Produce Dumping and Festival season in the local area. I found this tomato dump at the farm next to Camposol, they have tried to be discrete and tucked it between two wee hills and a big pile of firewood, but I was running along the tops and spotted it from above. I saved as many as I could but was too late for most of these tomatoes. If anybody has a good recipe for tomato sauce that can be frozen email it to me ! I’m told that local farming isn’t really viable any more, which is why the economy is now based around building houses for British people, and selling them stuff. Without getting into local politics even that has been done a bit half-arsed, the Urbanizacion that I am living in has not been adopted by the local council, and the Mayor of Mazarron, the nearest big town, has said quite frankly that it won’t be.

Wednesday and Friday this week are public holidays, and the parade/festival starts down at Puerta Mazarron tonight I’m heading down later on. Am now booked in for social events for dinner on Christmas day, a dance on New Years Eve and a Gourmet night on Three Kings Day, 6th January. Better get loads of training done to work it all off. Need to try and remember what day it is too.

Have settled into a routine out here, road rides, running, eating, exercises, reading my books, doing the Guardian crossword, and lots of sleeping. Saturday is mountain-biking day up in the Espuna, which is always good fun and I always come back covered in bruises and scrapes. Usually a mix of English and Spanish speakers, and never quite sure what you will get to eat if we have a café stop. On Saturday something came out that I am told was “Pigs Face” but they might have been winding me up. Last week we had a celebrity guest, the brother of the man who runs Polaris World, one of the really big companies that build houses out here, and are building a new ghetto on the road to Alhama. Should have got his brother’s address and had a few truckloads of tomatoes delivered to him.

The only other event of note around here is that my new proper offroad running trainers arrived. I am very excited about this, I love my new trainers, they are gorgeous and they fit perfectly in fact frack it here’s a picture: