Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Spain

It's ages since we went to Spain and I was feeling guilty that my brothers were doing all the work on the flat, so last week Jenny and I went out there. We've finally decided that letting out to friends and family is not working, since no-one has actually rented the place in the year or more we've been thinking along those lines.

The picture shows Jenny sitting on the patio.  The tree in the foreground is a lemon and the pink stuff to Jen's right is beaugainvillea. There's another lemon to the left of that.

So Ned has been speaking to a local letting agency, who seem keen to get us on their books. Trouble is, there's a lot to be done before the place is in a lettable state, so part of our duties was to instigate some of the necessary changes.

The agent was supposed to be coming up with quotes for replacing the cooker, cooker hood and fridge, for removing a defunct water filtration unit, for replacing the loo in the guest bedroom and for doing a bit of painting. Sadly, she's not done so yet.

Anyhow, I now have a euros current account at Lloyds TSB Spain and have initiated closure of my late step-mother's old bank account. That's likely to be a protracted process!

And we've put up a picture, a mirror, five ornamental plates, done a lot of cleaning and sorting out including cleaning the inside of a kitchen cupboard. Horrors! Well, the hinges are sacked out so a couple of the doors don't stay shut. The cheapo solution is magnetic catches, so I fitted those. That requires removing everything from the cupboards, and while they're empty, it's a good time to clean them. First time in 20 years, I reckon. Revolting! Hopefully Peter and Ned will muck in and do a couple more and in no time they'll all be clean.

Spent a fortune on bed linen and are still not fully equipped in that direction.

Although we flew out on Tuesday, it was Saturday before we finally made it to the beach! At this time of year there are few enough people around that you can go skinny dipping without offending anyone, and I do recommend it. Lovely!

I took my snorkel and mask partly to see if there was anything interesting to see and partly because in the shallows there's a small risk of being washed against rocks by the waves and it's nice to get a few seconds notice of the bang! I wasn't, as the water was just deep enough, but it added a margin for comfort.

So I saw perhaps half a dozen different sorts of small fish, snakelocks anemones, sea urchins and sea cucumbers. Nothing big, nothing terribly interesting or that I've not seen there before, but nice enough. There must be bigger fish there, because there are always a few fishermen with huge fishing rods and they wouldn't persist if they were never successful. I suppose they might be casting their lines further out than the 50 metres or so I swam.

The sea bed shelves very gradually there, and even at 50m out the water was only aboaut 3 or 4 metres deep.

When I gave the car back to Helle Hollis, Jenny pointed out a leaflet about the Home Owners' Club, which gives 15% reduction and your keys are waiting when you arrive.  And this is a benefit you can share with friends and family, so I plan to join!

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