Fleeting visit

Plan A – We drive back to the finca on New Year’s Day and spend a long leisurely weekend there, coming back on Sunday.

Plan B – Partner scuppers Plan A by deciding to work the Friday (Jan 2).

Plan C – I decide to go back on the bus Saturday, come back Sunday.

Plan D – Partner offers to drive back Saturday, and back again on Sunday. Sounds a good one.

Plan E – We both wake up feeling like shit on Saturday. I tell him not to drive when he is feeling rough. I feel so bad I go back to bed.

What actually happened – was that I went back on Sunday. Felt too ropey to walk to the frontier so got the bus. It was a good journey back to Málaga, I spent the two and a half hours snoozing (which I couldn’t really have done in the Landy – it would have been rather rude), completing a couple of Sudokus in the papers I found on the bus, and reading a novel. John le Carre’s ‘Call for the Dead’ in case anyone is interested.

Discovered the router I had taken back didn’t work. Thought the mouse wasn’t working either, until I discovered I had pulled out the wrong USB cord. Phew! Spent the evening reading in bed. Put a wash on to lull me to sleep.

Got up leisurely, hung washing out, washed out chicken drinkers, topped up the corn, watched the cockerel jumping on one of the chickens (Negrita), and then went off to the shop to buy them some lettuce.

Met the neighbours on the way back up the street.

“Hola,” says me.

“Hola, que pasa?” (What’s happening)

“Nada, compro lechuga para las gallinas como siempre.” (I’m buying lettuce for the chickens as usual).

Ratatatatatata in Spanish “……..has venido?” (something something something ..have you come?)

“Si,” I guessed. Looked at puzzled faces. Ooops, wrong answer. If they knew the answer why were they asking me the question?

“Como?” I asked, realising I had stuffed it up.

“El marido no esta, tu solamente has venido?” she repeated, with a few more words just to make it clear for the thick inglesa.

“Ah, no,” I said finally getting the answer right. Fairly obvious I had turned up on my own,and no he hadn’t come. No dirty big Land Rover sitting outside, no dog, and no chatter in the house.

So then I explained that Partner was poorly, coughing and had got a cold on his chest.

Well, why doesn’t he come up here if he is poorly? It’s nicer to be here if he is poorly.(or something on those lines). Er, because he doesn’t want to drive.

As 80-year-old Adelina doesn’t drive, I don’t think she realised that when in charge of a large piece of metal, on busy roads, occasionally going at speed (not often in ours), it’s a good idea to be fully compus mentus, rather than slightly dizzy, nauseous, shaky legs, and all the other things that accompany ‘flu.

Her daughter helpfully repeated that Partner didn’t want to drive.

“No quiere conducir,” she said.

Then we got onto employment – or rather unemployment. And agreed it was bad.

“Feliz año nuevo,” I said, thinking I would never get away.

“Igualmente,” they said. (same to you)

“Hasta la proxima,” I said. (until the next time).

Scooted home, dished up the lettuce. Then realised I still had an hour to wait for the bus into town, where I had to go and pay the ‘phone bill at the post office.

Should I walk the 40min track? With a travel bag, and a BIG winter coat? No doubt the sun would come out mid-way and I would be roasted as well as feeling dizzy and flu-ey. No. Best to sit around and wander down to the bus stop.

And that’s exactly what I did. Bus was irritatingly prompt, so just as well I legged it to the bus stop five mins before. At the post office, there was the usual queue of 15 or 20 people in front of me but the counter staff were efficient – maybe a 15 minute wait.

No direct bus to Málaga so got a ticket for the next stopping one. Except, one turned up that was obviously running late. It’s a sort of semi-direct, it doesn’t stop to pick up, but it does drop people off who got on earlier on the journey.

And then, what a dilemma in Málaga. To get the direct bus to Algeciras which only has one stop and so takes around 1:50 – but then I need to get a bus back to La Linea, or the stopping bus to La Linea which takes around 2:40.

I decided on the Algi bus. Partly because I was feeling achey, and nearly three hours on a bus is not good when back/legs are starting to twinge. And partly because it was due to leave 15 mins earlier than the other.

Except it wasn’t even in when it was due to leave, and people were boarding the other bus. Had I made the wrong decision? Looked at the queue for the ticket office. Half a dozen people. But if I got stuck in the queue to ask about changing my ticket, my bus might come in and leave.

Went to the La Linea driver and asked if I would be able to change my ticket at the office. ‘Pregunte a la taquilla,” he said. Well, that was really helpful.

Suddenly our bus came in. On we all jumped. Well, boarded slowly actually. But although it left 15 mins late at least it left before the other one. Traffic in Málaga was horrific. We got to Torremolinos by the time we should have been nearly at Marbella. Settled down for a snooze and a read.

Finally finished my other book. Blood River by Tim Butcher. Here is the website, and here is a review.

Hopped off the bus at Algi and immediately onto one for La Linea. Ouf. Someone was looking after me. Arrived at La Linea and was pleased to see the bus from Málaga had not arrived. Sometimes we do make the right decisions.

Arrived to home to find poor Partner had been in bed all day. After the morning dog walk he had fallen back into bed, aching limbs, shaking legs, dizzy, and basically felt totally useless. So useless that when I arrived he hadn’t finished the tumble drying, put the wash on, or even had anything to eat or drink.

Just as well I decided to go on my own on Sunday. Another right decision.


One comment on “Fleeting visit

  1. Hi Kate,Felt like I was on the bus. Hope all humans are feeling better now.Thanks for the book links. Quite interesting. Long ago I read The Washing of the Spears by Donald R. Morris. It covers the history of the Zulu Nation. (There is the Blood River connection.) A very good 900 page book. I was interested in African history after I lived in Nigeria and then again when visiting my parents while they lived in Botswana.You may know that two films, Zulu Dawn and Zulu are based on Morris’s book and follow it VERY closely. Thanks for the bus ride and shopping trip.James ∆≈/∆±


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