Fuengirola. Happy 15th Poppy!March 14 in Spain
It was Poppy's 15th birthday today! Of course we gave her lots of fuss and a few extra sweeties. Before we started this tour back in June 2016 there were many points where we doubted she'd get to start it with us, but touring life seems to suit her exceptionally well and in some respects (such as her incontinence) her health has actually improved. She gets the excitement of visiting so many new places just by stepping out of the door and to have long rests with us close by, knowing she only needs to peek out of her Poppy hole (a cupboard we have given over to her bed area) to see what we are up to.
Close to last night's stopover was a petrol station offering free services if you bought fuel. The water and emptying points were in a van washing bay. This bay had something we'd only seen in Spain; a raised platform on three sides, allowing you to walk around and wash the roof without having to be on the van itself. With the restrictions on washing vehicles in aires, we'd been unable to do it for a long time and the surface was getting slippery when wet, increasing the risk of an accident when Vicky climbed up to strap or unstrap the canoe. We spent a quite a while getting it clean, filling and emptying and by the time we pulled out there was a queue of 3 other vans waiting to use the services.
Our surroundings as we journeyed along the coast towards Málaga gradually became more built up, the high rise hotels overlooking the sea progressively taller and closer together. There was so much concrete and we were increasingly glad of our decision to just pass through, instead of parking up and looking round. It is strange, you'd think that after spending so much time in rural escapes, we'd have an appetite to delve into the urban jungle, drawn by the bright lights, culture, architechture and choice of eateries, shops and bars. However we found quite the opposite here, we observed with a mild interest but felt no compulsion to go exploring. There was a brief respite at one point where we drove alongside Parque de Málaga with its well watered grass and plethora of green palms and squawking parakeets. Perhaps if we'd given it the chance we would have found more places we liked, but it wasn't on the cards today.
Málaga blended into Torremolinos, the only major difference being the dual language Spanish /English signs now had English as their primary language. Casinos, more hotels, souvenir shops and advertisements for real estate and golf clubs assailed our eyes with Irish bars, Union Jacks and beauty salons aplenty.
Before hitting Marbella, we found respite for the night at a crescent shaped car park overlooking and with access to Playa las Doradas, a beach made up of dark sand, stones and inset rocks. It was 25m or so off the highway and separated by a concrete cordon and drop in the land, so it was easy enough to shut the traffic noise out. Poppy loves playing on the beach so we took her down for a quick game and she had some beef gravy over her dried dogfood for tea that night. All in all it was a good day for her. Happy Birthday Poppy!Read more