The Surf Side Cities of Sitges and Valencia
The drive to Sitges was super quick and this time it wasn’t due to Jem’s disregard for the speed limit. We met our airbnb host, who happened to speak zero English, which wasn’t a great combination with our zero Spanish. It was heaps fun trying to sort out house rules, deposits, check out times and whatever else we needed using noises and hand gestures but we actually did alright.
We hit the supermarket to plan a few cheap meals and get the old budget back on track, and then wandered to the beach. It was touristy as, but most of the tourists were Spanish which made it ok. As we were sitting there a big band of Congo drummers started playing which brought the beach to life.
That night Clare and I crashed out early leaving Jem to have the experience of his lifetime with Heidi and the Spanish boys in town. We didn’t realise prior to booking our accommodation but it turns out Sitges is the gay capital of Spain. Even more of a shock though is that Jem is actually quite a pretty man, and he caught the eye of more than a few chaps. Jem enjoyed this about as much as he would enjoy eating a bowl of fruit salad with a side of rice and drinking a glass of long life milk whilst wearing a pair of thongs and an un-ironed collared shirt. In other words he hated it. Or so he says anyway.
A stop at a local cafe meant it was a late start the following day, so it was around midday when Jem and I rocked up at the tourist office to see what we could find to visit in the car for the afternoon. Hilariously when we asked the lady if there were any nice beaches we could drive to she said “no, not really”. Then when we asked if there was something else we could visit she replied, “Yes, the city centre here is nice”. I will let you guess where the tourist office is located. At least she was being genuine I suppose.
We decided to head south looking for a nice beach anyway. Turns out there were a few, so we had a swim and a relax on one. Jem forgot to mention that as we napped the parking ticket he got had expired, so there was a little surprise waiting for us when we returned. Luckily the Spanish love a gamble almost as much as us Aussies do and so there was a second chance on the fine. So we paid the 6 euro within the hour and avoided the 90 euro parking fine. Not only that but before we realised the ticket had an English translation on the back we had a superbly entertaining conversation with a local man who only spoke a few English words. Again hand actions and gestures to the rescue!
It was on a walk to the beach the following morning we had a good laugh at Heidi’s expense. She was lying ‘very’ comfortably on the beach amongst her European friends as Jeremy, Clare and I arrived. Clare hatched a genius plan and snuck up on her and scared her half to death. It was hilarious to watch from the other end of the beach!
We had great confidence in our multi-lingual hand gestures when our airbnb host rocked up bang on our scheduled departure time. As we weren’t quite ready we asked for another 10 minutes to finish packing. As we sat on the doorstep an hour later we realised that maybe our gestures weren’t quite as good as we thought. When they did eventually return it was off to the train for Clare and I as Heidi and Jem headed off to collect the kids in the car and meet us in Valencia.
After a quick visit to Barcelona (only way to get South) then back down to Valencia Clare and I checked into our airbnb and came and found the others hostel which was a bit of a hike away. Jem and Matt were off ‘parking the car’ when we eventually got to the hostel, so the five of us went and grabbed a nice bite to eat. Jared even learned what paella was (not bad after a week in Spain, pretty observant fella) and almost ordered it before changing to Mexican inspired tapas instead.
Next morning we all met at Finnegan’s for the State of Origin. After realising it wasn’t being televised on Skysports the publican borrowed Matty’s computer to stream it. Which kept his 30 odd guests happy. Again the result didn’t matter at all; it was just great to have a nice time with fellow Australians. In fact I can’t even remember who won? Most importantly there were free drinks for the owner of computer, which was Matt and then later Jared when a second waitress offered.
While enjoying the view we spotted a bit of greenery, so found the park and had a laze in the long grass, before heading home for a nap. While Heidi and Jared headed out in search of a piercing, which never eventuated.
Still trying to recover from the exhaustion of having so many visitors we were pretty unkeen to head out for Heidi’s last night. After a few funny chats about a Murray cod and a rusty trumpet, followed by a redbull or two we were primed to go. We stopped on the treck to the clubs for a bit of balancing on a chain, as is always great fun. Jeremy got sick of waiting for us and headed home. Seemed like a wise move minutes later when undercover cops showed up and tried to get us to line up facing the wall. I was super ready to run, but then we all just stood together and walked off saying we were sorry and just kept walking. They just let us go and even apologised in the end. Not sure what they thought we were up too, but we were being pretty rowdy. We walked past a few clubs before heading into the busiest looking one. Who would we find killing it on the d-floor? None other than big Jerome. He hadn’t headed home at all and was loving it. We all danced and laughed together till about 4am, when Heidi hugged the hell out of us all an
d it was time for bed!
As you do when Jeremy is in control of operations, we were up at 8am for the Hatchback of Horror. The title we gave his little hatchback that he had kindly offered to give the 5 of us remaining a lift to Granada in. Having six of us in the one little car for a twelve hour journey was very funny indeed! Jeremy even wanted to stop and pick up one of the pretty ladies on the side of the road to increase the hilarity, until he realised that would be quite expensive as they charged by the hour to hop in your car. The highlight of the trip was when we stopped for maccas and only the drive-through was open. We were given the rare treat of listening to Jeremy order breakfast for all of us from someone who hardly spoke or understood a word of English. We ate about 30 minutes later but laughed a lot!
We were all pretty relieved to have a break for lunch when we stopped at a really cool beach. By this time all four of us in the back seat had take a stint in the hole (or footwell as some ppl call it) and Matty’s legs were pretty sick of being up on the dashboard, as he had a few bags at his feet. We grabbed a bite and watched the cricket. Then Jem decided another treat was in order and decided we should all hit the beach while he tried out the g-banger Heidi had bought him as a parting gift while the other two lads sported their new budgie smugglers. I requested it was removed before we played some tennis on the beach and had a swim.
From there it wasn’t long before we were making our way through the winding cliffs up into the Sierra Nevada Mountains. As we headed up and over Jizz captured some truly excellent photos of rocks, signs and other blurry objects out the window before we stopped at a nice view for a wee and a rock throw. Once we were through the mountains it didn’t take long at all to reach Granada.