Paul and I are getting very excited about seeing Tina, our daughter. She has arrived in Valencia, Spain, for a works conference but before flying off she will be joining us in Benidorm for a few days. It will be the first time we will have seen her with her baby bump.
Now back to what has been happening. The weather is getting warmer, high 20's to low 30 deg c most days with bright blue skies and the odd white, fluffy cloud passing over head. We are camped on a slight rise so we get a gentle breeze blowing through making things very pleasant. Also gets the washing dry in record time!
The land around us that was green and covered in masses of spring flowers is now turning golden under the sun. As the breeze blows the wheat coloured grasses bend and sway with a soft rustling sound and in amongst the bronzing land stand tall, spiky green leaved thistles with their tops of sprouting, purple fuzz.
There is also a change in the the towns dynamics. Young holiday makers are arriving in droves now. Most are Brits on their summer break. As you walk along the beach you can always spot the 'newbies', from either their lily white bodies or from the bright red plume of their sun burn.
Many people we know have now left to spend the summer months back in the UK but we did have a great night out with Bette and Andy. While walking through the Old Town we came across a medieval market where racks of lamb and whole piglets were cooked over red hot coals. The smell was mouthwatering but sadly our tummy's were full from our visit to a few tapas bars earlier in the evening!! There were people dressed in medieval garb wandering the market, musicians, food sellers, knights complete with chain mail. Paul tried his hand at archery and sunk his arrow into a traditional target made of straw.
I joined a group of friends for lunch in a restaurant up in the mountains. We all enjoyed the 'Menu del dia' (Menu of the Day). For 10 euros (£9, $16) we had four courses and wine. First course was a tuna salad, 2nd was either paella, homemade lentil soup or a platter of Spanish cheeses and cold meats. The main course was slow cooked lamb with meat that just fell off the bone and that was followed by a dessert platter of ice cream, a crème caramel and a profiterole. I was so stuffed I couldn't eat for the rest of the day!
The day had arrived when we were meeting up with Tina. We had arranged to meet at a certain time and place in Valencia. I was standing at the designated spot, so excited about seeing her when my phone rang showing Tina on the display. ''Where are you Poppet?'' I asked. ''The taxi driver couldn't find the address I gave him'' was the reply ''He has dropped me off near some shops''. Where was she? After a bit of detective work we guessed she was about half a kilometre away. We both started walking. I went south along the road and Tina headed north. After 10 minutes or so I spotted her in the distance and I must admit that a feeling of great relief swept through me. We hugged so hard.
Tina is looking really well, pregnancy must be agreeing with her now after the morning sickness of the first three months. She is now 20 weeks, so half way there. I think she loves her extending tummy as she is often to be seen softly rubbing her baby bump. And baby is making himself/herself known with gently kicks or the soft thud of a fist as it moves around in its protected home.
We have loved showing Tina around Benidorm, a town we both think of as our 2nd home. We walked the promenade, had tapas in the Old Town, watched flamenco dancers, trolled through the towns large market hoping for a bargain, spent the afternoons relaxing under the shade of the mulberry trees, we sat on the beach late one evening and tucked into large slices of homemade pizza and enjoyed taking a dip or two in the resorts beautiful pool. We lapped at ice creams while watching the sun worshippers on the beach, ventured into a couple of the nightclubs that dot the town, had dinner out with friends, visited the beautiful Russian church that a Russian Expat had built for his mother and walked on the sand by the famous Calpe rock.
All too soon our four days with Tina were up and we headed back to Valencia to drop her off at the airport hotel so she was ready to catch her flight to Berlin (another conference) the following day.
We had a wonderful time with you Poppet. Nikolas will be waiting eagerly for your return home complete with your little baby bump. We will see you when we get home in September.
Now, for Paul and I, it's farewell to Benidorm.
Well that's it for now folks.
Hope everyone is well.
Take care, Liz and Paul x