Another work day done. Managed a walk down by the river, the neighbours have struck a deal to keep the dog on a long lead after 6pm. This was a test on that agreement, struck up just yesterday. Works really well as I tend to finish after 6 anyway, so the ability to walk stress free with the family going forward is excellent. Truce agreed. Nemesis no more!
So anyway, it was the evening after our first full day that the opportunity to start the blog occurred. Everything aligned, 2 year old in bed, Rioja freshly acquired after a delightful Spanish meal out into the late evening sunshine..
I wake up fresh inspired by the post the night before. Today, let’s go to Ronda! I’d already scoped out the route, didn’t look far at all, a nice little route to test the feet of the Mazda on the Spanish roads. During this first week I was in full holiday mode, but also keen to get a lot in before the reality of working from home really kicked in. The last time we went to Ronda together was 7 years ago, fond memories, still during the year we first met. What better first road trip during our stay here?
The car loaded up – we hit the road, I didn’t quite trust the car sat nav yet on foreign soil, so I decided the stick with google maps. I’d already noted the sign posts at the next village, ideal. We were already on the main road. So at this stage we still had the precarious situation of just leaving the place where we are staying (still exists) but with the knowledge of the route already in my head, full speed ahead. As we approached the roundabout I hadn’t quite noted how steep this road to Ronda actually was, it also seemed to narrow a bit. Oh dear.
The reality of our location in the middle of a national park and the Andalusian mountains is that nothing is as direct as it appears on the map. This casual 1 hr drive along an established ‘A road’ was not quite what I had in mind. The hair pin turns, praying for traffic not coming the other way but bloomin’ heck, what a view. I’m annoyed now I didn’t stop for any pictures on route, because the scenery was breath-taking!
As we arrived in Ronda, I hadn’t quite got my bearings, in my head I was just thinking of the old town and the old architecture. I had little recollection for the main high street but these brief memories came flooding back. It was lunchtime in the mid day heat, first time out sight seeing in the masks.. Food was a must. I’d had ideas of heading to the old town, finding a lovely tapas place off the beaten track. It was clear they wouldn’t hold out. Main square dining it would have to be. Fine for me and my daughter, not for my wife (a vegetarian), we got the tapas special to share. Luckily there was bread, as the tapas was just a variety of salty meat. Perfect.
Suitably fuelled we headed to the famous bridge linking Ronda old town to new, I’d forgotten how amazing it was. We stopped to take in the scenery, from the mountainous location you can see for miles.. Then a gust of wind came at a time my daughter was peepy popeying precariously over the edge.. Oh no.
Her hat had gone. It was un-saveable. Never to be seen again. Photos were taken of the bridge but the edge of the experience had been taken away from the missing hat. This didn’t happen in 2013! We then remembered the lovely caves we visited, let’s head there. Suddenly we were noticing our masks a bit more, the mid afternoon sun taking it’s toll on our weary touristic legs. We kept going, but we had a push chair in tow.. It’ll be fine. It wasn’t. We’d anticipated the slope, sure, the bumpy road, no probs. Then we saw the steps. Oh. Dear.
We gave up. Got ourselves an ice cream and headed home. I put in the code home for the Mazda sat nav. Easy sailing home.