Did I tell you about the hotel room that felt like heaven? We got the cleanest we had been in weeks and slept like logs! Bliss! When we finally awoke the following morning, we opened the blinds to a great view of the port of Algeciras and the rock of Gibraltar.We managed to tear ourselves away at 11am and set off for Seville where we would spend 2 nights, making use of the extra night gained form leaving Morocco early. We drove about 130 miles to the campsite which is the closest one to the City.It was lovely, we were camping amongst orange trees and it was hot and sunny. We washed yet more stuff, in fact we have used washing machines a lot more than our little scrubba bag which I was so excited about at the beginning of the trip.
On Monday we caught a local bus into the centre of Seville and spent the day in the city. What a great place.We bought a tourist hop on hop off bus ticket for the main attractions and stayed on for the whole loop.Then we got off at the spectacular cathedral and wandered around the narrow side streets for a while.Seville has the oldest bull fighting ring in Spain and whilst I fundamentally disagree with bull fighting, decided to book a short tour to learn a bit more as it is clearly part of the culture of this area, as most souvenirs either had a bull or a flamenco dancer on them. It was very informative, the bull ring held 12,000 people and the season finishes this weekend.I would never go and watch a bull fight but could understand how exciting some people might find it.
On Tuesday, we drove around 180 miles to Cacares.Tomorrow it is a long one, around 300 miles to Aguilar de Campoo before the shortish hop on Thursday morning to Bilbao where we catch the ferry back to Blighty at 3pm Thursday.Spain is lovely to drive through, the roads are easy and the weather is still in the mid 20s here.But it definitely feels that it is last round up and that our adventure is coming to an end.
We have had a blast. We have driven 3,540 miles to date and will have done well over 4,000 by the time we reach Leeds. Gav has learnt that we don`t need so much stuff with us and that there are places to buy stuff from wherever you are! He has also learnt that it is possible to fix your own vehicle when the RAC or AA are not on hand to help you when you break down.
Jen has learnt not to take so much stuff, eg her RAB jacket which goes down to minus 28 degrees (it has not even hit single figures overnight and it has been in the 30s and 40 for most of the trip); that she is confident in driving the landy anywhere,including the madness of cities such as Marrakesh and up steep and windy mountain pistes and it has reinforced that people are the most important part of places and people are friendly and good hearted. Speaking Arabic has also been really good and has helped to connect with people and have a few laughs with them.
We both agree that we have probably tried to cram too much in and needed a few less miles!
So what has been useful in terms of our gear?
We both love the fridge/freezer in the landy. We are sitting here drinking ice cold beer and have been able to keep food really cold and fresh throughout the whole trip.Similarly the inbuilt water tank, water filter and tap have been invaluable.We have always had safe water wherever we have been, as the filter ensures that all the harmful stuff does not get through.The wolf packing boxes have also been great, we have been able to access our stuff fairly easily throughout the trip, even when the bits we have needed have been in the very back behind everything else. We will do a more thorough list when we get back as there are so many other things we have found useful and others not so!
So life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming "Wow, what a ride!"