Running at about 25 degrees in the shade today but there is a welcome light breeze. Charlie thumped me on the nose at about 06:30 this morning, indicating his thoughts on the imminent sunrise and a desire to have a bit of cream, I think! I, being (marginally) more sensible than a cat, turned over, thanked him for his consideration, and promptly dropped back off to sleep until Jack, too, decided it was time for movement on my part at about 08:15.
The sun was just about breaking through the light mist covering the surrounding hills and the promise was, as ever, of another hot day ahead. I missed the bread van this morning, mistaking his horn-blasts for that of one of the fishvans. I therefore walked Jack along to the small shop/supermarcado in the old square and bought some bits and bobs for lunch and for Jack’s tucker.
On returning home, I went into the sitting room to find a pair of swallows swanning around the room, while one of their offspring sat, perkily perched on the railings overlooking the Calle outside. The parents became quite agitated by my presence; one flew off out of the open door through the Azotea while the other fluttered, hovering, and loudly called a warning to its kid that it should take to the wing and follow it off, away from the evil man (me) who was trying to find a camera to photograph it! So, taking mummy’s advice, it took off and I missed the piccy. (No change there, then!) Nevertheless, it was an unexpected and pleasant treat!
I saw the first Bee Eater since arriving back here a few days ago. Although its colours were not as spectacular as usual (or so it seemed to me, viewing it from behind) it was a nice sight, perched on a telegraph wire a few miles outside the village. There’s usually a huge flock of them together on these wires each early evening after they come down from feeding up on the hillsides above the village. They nest down in the valley and spend much of the day in the lower mountain slopes, returning home each evening about 19:00 or so. They really are the most spectacularly beautiful and striking birds:
All in all, we’re pleased we decided to have an Azotea built when we had the house renovated six or seven years ago. Originally, there was not one here but it seemed to us to be a worthwhile expense and addition:
There is a pair of House Sparrows nesting in the ceiling beams, and the racket the young ‘uns make when feeding , and who must be about ready to take off, is extraordinary. Charlie sits below, with those independently whirring, rotating cat ears, trying to figure out how he can get up to the beams and the potential feathery feast hidden behind them:
|Bird shit shows nest site|
The ceilings throughout the house are made in the same way, a traditional Alpujarranian style, from Chestnut beams. They are treated with a preservative, then lightly coated with a glaze mix based on the old Swedish favourite (ironically) of linseed oil and spirit. The end result is quite pleasing:
|Sitting Room Ceiling Beams|
|Kitchen Ceiling Beams|
Dorin, our Romanian friend, has yet to turn up with a Sat dish. So, again, I’m hoping for the best.
I heard some English today in the little local shop. A couple, whom I’ve never before seen, were debating what to buy from its decidedly limited stocks. They seemed surprised when I responded to their greetings in English and then turned to address the shopkeeper in passable Spanish – though I do say it myself! I must admit that each day I graze on a Spanish text book I borrowed from a friend in London before moving down here. And I’m coming to remember some of the stuff I learned way back when I attended a Spanish conversation course class in Newport, Gwent, over the course of a few years, when I worked in the town as a lawyer. So I feel quietly (fatally) confident that as time passes, I’ll recall more and more and my comprehension and spoken skills will improve. They couldn’t get much worse, in other words!
Adios……or should that be, Hasta Luego!