Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mary!

Well...the big 60 comes to us all eventually...have a great day!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Mary's 60's Birthday

We all had a great time at Kate and Jean's to celebrate Mary's birthday and of course, Eliot, was the star of the show! Mary, I know you won't mind being upstaged by your darling grandson...just a doll.

Thanks so much. Kate and Jean, for inviting us and for the super dinner.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thinking of sunnier times....

We had a beer here overlooking this great view in Nerja. We had to eventually move away from this table because we were sweltering.

Beach in Nerja. Many people were sunbathing but no swimmers.

We both went wading and realized why people weren't swimming...just a bit too chilly even for us.

Very warm in the sun in Nerja.

Jim on our balcony in our hotel in Granada.

I was going to post some photos of the snow but decided it would be more cheerful to post some photos of recent sunshine we experienced...

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A couple of little videos from Spain

Most wireless services in hotels don't allow access to YouTube I guess because you are taking up too much bandwidth.

Paella loving kitty.

We just loved seeing and hearing these birds in the plane trees outside our hotel in the square.

A bit of a shock after the Costa del Sol

English Bay from our window yesterday morning.

Front of Victoria house.

Looking out from my sunroom in the back in Victoria.

Luckily we didn't have to negotiate snow driving in Vancouver to the ferry yesterday but it was bitterly cold as you can see from the photo I took in the morning. Hearing about the snow and problems in Victoria made for a rather tense ferry trip but in the end the Pat Bay was clear and although it got trickier as we got into Victoria the roads were well salted and sanded so not too bad.

I'm looking forward to my sunroom getting all toasty with the sun today and beginning to read our next book club choice, "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. Getting good reviews by all reports.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Back home

We returned to Vancouver bathing in sunshine and a dusting of snow. Great to be picked up at the airport by Richard and not have that last wretched Victoria leg...it's such a killer after a long flight.

We had a good sleep last night and feel almost normal...so much easier coming this way for jetlag.

Today we went to The Sylvia Hotel for breakfast, had crepes from a stand that is just in front of us for lunch, and will head to Denman for dinner tonight. So nice not to drive.
Cracked open a bottle of Bandol red for lunch (notice we are having lunch on the coffee table I painted of the Hotel Splendide in Bandol) since it seemed like we were in the south of France with the sunshine and the view of the ocean.

Photo I took this morning when I got up.

Richard loved the knit tie (apparently very cool again) we bought for him at Liberty's in London.

Friday, November 19, 2010

More Malaga

Not sure why this shop is in Malaga!

View from our room...someone is raising pigeons across the way.



Suckling pig

A few scenes of Malaga

We had fun walking around Malaga and getting almost lost in the winding streets but lots to look at. We went to the Picasso Museum here and it was excellent. Picasso was born in Malaga. Got down to the port as well and mainly ate and drank and enjoyed the ambience.

Last night we had a special tempranillo wine and Jim had suckling pig which was fabulous and I took a chance on a dish called Malaga Cod...a specialty of the region. I wasn't quite sure about it initially but Jim talked me into it (of course he was having the suckling pig and believe me I didn't get much...) The cod was prepared with cinnamon (or however you spell that) carmalized onions, raisins, and prunes. It turned out to be wonderful. The cod was sablefish (very fresh) and they served a huge portion (Jim got half. This was all of 13 euros...about $18. The suckling pig was more at 23 euro but very worth it.

We've felt Spain to be a great value...not something we have experienced lately in Europe but then London, Paris, the south of France aren't exactly known for being cheap.

Flying to Heatherow this afternoon, overnighting, then home tomorrow.

Cod a la Malaga

New style sculpture and the old cathedral in the background.

Almond seller and his buddies.

Oven for baking potatoes...a real meal with all the toppings.

I feel inspired to paint this campanille.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The cats of Nerja

This post is especially for my cat loving friends...

More Nerja

Sunny Nerja

View from our room.

Lots of British and German folk so turkey dinner for Xmas!

It's just great being in Nerja...so warm and relaxing although I don't think we'll be swimming. Went wading and a bit chilly. Sat at a beachside restaurant and drank red wine in the sun instead then wandered back to our hotel which is overlooking a square and even has a bit of a seaview and watched the sunset while drinking scotch and listening to loads of birds congregating in the plane trees in the square before they settled down for the night. A great location and we really love the feel of this little place...reminds us of Carqueirrane a bit when we had our place in the port watching the comings and goings and the view.

We haven't been doing much but sitting in the sun by the sea,drinking red wine or beer and eating. We had a great paella Tuesday in our favouite seaside restaurant. It was really great to get this wonderful weather in Nerja as yesterday (Wed) when we left for Malaga it was actually raining and also raining and dull in Malaga so didn't get a great impression of Malaga initially but it did brighten up and we've done some interesting wandering here in Malaga and will head to the Picasso Museum and perhaps visit the inside of the Cathedral here...magnificent on the outside.

Weve been very impressed with the prices in Spain for hotels, food and drinks. A glass of red wine or a beer pretty much anywhere is around three dollars. We paid about $36 for the paella for two...wonderful huge gambas (prawns) along with smaller prawns, clams, mussels, squid, sea bass. A black cat came up to us while we were eating the paella and meowed mournfully so of course got a bit. He or she seemed quite content after that and slept beside us in the sun. Loads of cats in Nerja...I counted 9 in the major square called Balcon de Europa. Someone had left them a bag of treats so they were in heaven either eating or lying in the sun. Elaine, you would have loved it!

We were feeling no pain after our paella so went for a teeter-totter...can't give people the royal bumps on these ones! Then watched some Germans enjoying their game of petanque.

Monday, November 15, 2010