Monday 31st October 2016
Happy Birthday to Dorothy's Mum today. Sending lots of love and hope she has a lovely day.
Another journey south again today.
Actually it was only a short distance south but it meant a long tour of 60 miles
around to the other side of a mountain range called the Moncayo Massif.
29 miles of the trip was on a long straight road which was so rough and bumpy we thought that it would never end. Dorothy declared that the road was so boring and must be the worst that we have ever travelled. Eventually we came to a motorway which went up and through the Moncao Mountain range but up there the mist and cloud was so dense that we couldn't see very far. Not that Dorothy would want to see very far because most of it would be down to the bottom of the valleys! The highest peak on the mountain San Miguel is 2314m so we are quite happy that the road doesn't go over the very top but just through a very high mountain pass.
This photo was taken on the way to
So now we are in the town of Calatayud (Kal at a yud) in Aragon which is near to the old Roman city of Bilbilis Augustus. On our first evening we located the Tourist Office to get the maps and other leaflets that we need for our visit here. Geocaches were plotted on a town plan and we are all set for tomorrow's adventure.
On the way back we had a look at part of the town. It looked quite a large town and we look forward to exploring it tomorrow.
We had a phone call to James and Frankie and were pleased to find that they had visited Great Nanny on her birthday during the day. We chatted about our Grandaughter Scarlett's first birthday. Goodness, this is coming around way too quickly! We can't wait to see her again and look forward to her showing us how well she is walking.
A phone call to Mum (Great Nanny) and she said that she had had a visit from them and that Scarlett was doing really well. Great Nanny was so excited because she had also seen her other Great Grandaughter Penelope at the weekend.
Today is a National Holiday in Spain to celebrate All Saints Day.
The weather has changed considerably today. It is much colder at 6 degrees C outside and the sky is overcast. Many motorhomes came onto the Aire last night and as they were all sorting out their water and toilet it was quite a time before we could fill up our water tank. As it was cold we had a cooked breakfast this morning, one of the great pleasures of life. At the moment, as we are parked under some trees, and the daylight hours are decreasing the solar panels are not working well enough and we are beginning to lose electric power in the batteries.
During the early afternoon the sun
came out and so we made a good start on the geocaches, which led us through
the park and out along the riverside.
We usually have a big problem translating the details and information for the Geocaches.
We find the information on Allan's phone, but as it is in Spanish we then use Dorothy's phone to photograph Allan's phone and then use her Google translation App.
On the way back to the motorhome
Allan found a really good store where he bought some good quality branded computer
memory at an amazing price. This will help with storing the thousands of photos
that we are taking for the blog.
Unfortunately the afternoon sunshine was not enough to fully recharge the batteries.
Today we had some good success with the Geocaches. There are quite a few here and they take us to places which are not on the usual tourist trail.
By lunchtime we found ourselves in a plaza sitting outside having a cerveza in the sunshine at 22 degrees and loving it!
Then it was time to get back to our geocaching!
After a time look where we found
ourselves again - back in the plaza and so we just had to stop for another cerveza
(has to be done!).
Whilst waiting for our drinks Dorothy checked her 'phone and found a comment from Martin P about "her" previous two glasses of cerveza.
So we asked the waitress to take a photo of us - yes Martin P, the two glasses were for the both of us!!!!!
Crossing over the plaza we saw this statue of a market trader. We asked in the TI if a market was still held here but she said there was not.
Apparently in the buildings behind there used to be a covered market place but this again is no more.
Today we spent in Calatayud, this
time looking around the shops and Allan was so pleased with the memory stick
purchased on Tuesday that he bought another one today.
We left Calatayud this morning and travelled to Cariñena. Although it was not a long journey, with a few breaks and a big shopping experience along the way we arrived in the late afternoon at Cariñena. The Aire was a bit out of the way but hopefully it will be OK for the night.
Made a phone call to Frankie this evening to see how our little Grandaughter is doing and found that James' car has broken down out in the countryside. Hope he gets home safely.
Saturday started off rather cloudy an drizzly. Did a bit of Blog writing and messaged Frankie to check all was OK with James. Later in the day it brightened up so we made our way to the Tourist Information Office. Such a small town but nice enough to walk around and explore the little shops.
Dorothy couldn't get a photo of this Church because there was nowhere for her to move back to get it all in!
As an interest, Cariñena has
a fountain in it's main square where, for their main festival, the local producers
fill it up with wine. Unfortunately this festival is in September so we have
missed it for this year. Perhaps we will come this way again.
This emblem was on the ground near to the fountain.
Walking back to the motorhome we
were discussing the siesta period and the general trading hours (excepting some
of the larger supermarkets).
They don't appear to work many hours and how can these businesses survive?
As we are parked next to some tall houses the batteries are still not fully charging during the day and so we must leave here tomorrow in search of a more open aire.
We were going to the main city in these parts called Zaragoza (Sara go tha) but when we saw how huge this city was we decided that it was not for us, so carried on to an aire in Zuera.
Zuera turned out to be a modern housing estate with no character and the parking place was under very low hanging trees so that was also a big no from us. Not having a successful day today! However we stopped for a little lunch (that word again) during which we decided to head on to Huesca (u seka) where we arrived and parked up in the early evening.
Dorothy found that the Tourist Information Office remains open until 8 o'clock so we set off to try to find it. After getting a little lost and asking several people the directions a man and lady walking their dog kindly led us the way, saying that they don't know why we want to go there as it will be closed at this time. Dorothy had already checked their times and assures everyone that it will be open, and sure enough it was. We armed ourselves with the town map and various leaflets. We had been watching the weather forecasts and there had been heavy snow high in the mountains. A lot of rain is forecast lower down and so we asked out crossing the Pyrenees. The tourist office lady said it was OK at the moment but to check when we arrived in Jaca before we set off.
Tomorrow we look forward to seeing Huseca.
We can't believe we have just spent another week in Spain. Time is moving so fast.
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