Saturday, 6 February 2016

Saturday 6 February – Bea de Granada

Where’s Colin? He’s at an ACSI campsite at Bea de Granada, about 20km east of Granada, at N37º12.515'; W3º 29.327

Finally waving goodbye to Abla, we pointed Colin initially towards Guadix this morning (for a quick supermarket stop), where houses cut into the rocks (but with normal house-like fronts) were apparent all around us. The scenery around there was pretty spectacular too. From Guadix it was on to Bea de Granada, making it quite a big driving day for us – we’ve moved a whole 50 miles.

It was at exactly 11.08, as we passed kilometre marker 278 on the A92 motorway that something surprising happened: Colin’s cab fan sprang back into life (after exactly four weeks of only working on max speed). There was no apparent prompt for the resurrection; we hadn’t just gone over a bump, had a change in weather conditions or anything like that. That scuppers my diagnosis that the resistor had gone (the highest speed bypasses the resistor, hence when the resistor dies the first three speeds go with it). Maybe it’s just a dodgy connection. Maybe at some point I’ll contort myself under the dashboard and see if I can see. Or maybe I’ll just wait to see how long this resurrection lasts.

It was just before noon when we arrived at our campsite and picked ourselves a pitch. I think we chose well, with this view out of Colin’s side door:

The picture doesn’t do it justice. There’s lots and lots of snow up in them there hills. Not bad for €15, and with laundry only being €3 a load too.

Just over an hour later, our pitch was strung up with flapping washing on an excellent drying day (the bedding was all ready to come in after half an hour in the sun and keen wind, which was a bonus, as we had far more stuff to hang out than we had drying space available).

Whilst the washing dried, I entered round 2 of my battle with the Alhambra ticket website. Round 1 happened early this morning when I’d tried to buy the limited-access tickets which were still available for Monday, having discovered yesterday that the tickets which include the palaces had already sold out for next week. The process was complicated by the purchasing pages reverting back to Spanish (even after I’d selected English on the previous page) leading to much copying into Google Translate (see footnotes 1 and 2). By the time I had all the details filled in, in a way the website would accept, I got what I thought was a ‘timed out’ message, having taken longer than my allocated 5 minutes to do all the translation and tapping out of details on my phone. However, the translated message wasn’t entirely clear, and I didn’t want to end up buying multiple sets of tickets, so I gave up for the time being.

This afternoon, after checking my credit card and email, I concluded that we hadn’t got tickets, so I tried again. Aaaaaarrrrrggggghhhhhh! Now it wouldn’t let me even buy the limited tickets for Monday!

Not to be defeated, I tried various tickets on various days and thus came to find that some of the all-areas tickets had become available for tomorrow. Now being more familiar with the requirements of the website, I wasted no time in snapping them up.

The only slightly complicating factor is that there’s no Sunday bus service. We can, apparently, park at the Alhambra, which on the face of it is silly-expensive for parking a motorhome, but on the other hand I’ve read that they have security there, and by visiting the town tomorrow instead of Monday we’ll save ourselves two nights at a campsite plus bus fares.

With tickets bought, we thought we’d get a quick leg-stretch in with a stroll down to the village and back. What had struck me about the place, from a distance, is all the green grass surrounding it, and that all of the houses have pitched roofs. It doesn’t look like anywhere else we’ve been on this trip so far. However, even though it sits in truly stunning surroundings, there’s nothing much of interest within its streets, except for this scary-rabbit-come-teletubby scene:

The rabbit/teletubby on the left does have an octopus on its head

As an antidote to the rabbits, I’ll finish with another snap which is similar to the first one, but taken from half way down the hill towards the village:


(Footnote 1: I’ve now realised I was using the wrong internet browser on my phone. If I’d been using Chrome it would have offered me translation within the browser.

Footnote 2: I’m posting these blogs using Bloggeroid (see Footnote 3). I’ve now twigged that if I put more than one asterisk in Bloggeroid then it thinks I want the text in bold. Hence changing from multiple asterisks to the word ‘footnote’.

Footnote 3: Threes excellent Feel at Home feature allow me to use my phone in Spain (and various other countries) at no extra cost, so I’ve bought a bundle which gives me lots of data, texts and calls. Unfortunately, Feel at Home doesn’t allow tethering or hotspot usage – a fact of which I get reminded via a message every time I optimistically try to connect the laptop to my phone, so I’m typing these posts on the laptop but then having to transfer the text to my phone to post them. For reasons unknown, Three has no objection to Mick’s phone connecting to mine via a hotspot.)

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