The Winter Blues are setting in already…but there is stuff on Telly :-)

Aug 28

The Winter Blues are setting in already…but there is stuff on Telly :-)

I always suffer a complete sense of gloom at this time of year in the UK, partially because I know I won’t be going back to Spain until the spring and partially because I know it is going to get darker and wetter here for the foreseeable months. It’s usually about now that I will start practicing learning Spanish again, I find it much harder to concentrate between Spring and Summer because I am always too excited about flying out again. So this week I have been back on DuoLingo and also catching up on the British TV shows about people moving to Spain (A Place in the Sun, A New Life in the Sun etc). These little things just make me feel closer to this part of the world that I adore. Anyway…. Yesterday I was having a little break from moping and spotted a facebook post from Cuevas Helena which is about 15 minutes from my place, talking about a TV show that they were featured in. Channel 5 – Our Dream Hotel. This is a great watch if you are interested in Cave Houses (or of course holidaying in one). Lovely to see such passion not to mention a fantastic finished cave. I am always grateful to see Mt Jabalcon too as it reminds me of another home 🙂 You can watch it on catchup at Channel 5 – Our Dream Hotel...

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August Holiday and a Trip to Granada

Aug 22

August Holiday and a Trip to Granada

Well we popped over for 11 days in early August for our second and final holiday of 2017. I was armed with bits and bobs along to decorate a little and put a bit more of a mark on the place (mainly vinyl albums in frames but also some other junk I had collected from charity shops over the past few months). The weather was brilliant, mid to high 30’s the whole time and the jacuzzi was even at 35c when I first turned it on…. more importantly though, My first bit of Great News was that Clive had fitted the new hot water boiler so we now have Hot Running Water, this might not seem like much but it has never worked properly since we bought the place, partially due to me not having cash and partially due to other things that were more important.  The excitement of having hot water forced me to buy a portable washing machine from Amazon and have it delivered to one of the local bars so this was also waiting for us at a friends house on arrival. This was a great addition to the house and meant I was able to leave a full 10 days worth of CLEAN clothes behind thus meaning I can take more junk next time. Clive had also worked on the arch in the large bedroom and made some nice little cubbyholes with sockets inside (just big enough for a cup of tea and a mobile phone). Our neighbour had told us that “Donk” the Donkey had reappeared and was living in the Old Bullring so we bought a big bags of apples and carrots from the Mercadona in Baza and took her an evening feast (the following day she got sold to another farmer so we ended up with a heap of apples and carrots we had to throw out). We didn’t really have any plans for this holiday other than going down to Granada for a night. Granada is about an Hour and a Half from Cortes de Baza and we had booked a little apartment on the hill below the Alhambra. I’m not really a city/town person but I loved it there and really look forward to...

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Tabernas Desert Film Sets (Part #1) Straight to Hell and Chino

Jun 28

Tabernas Desert Film Sets (Part #1) Straight to Hell and Chino

Something we love doing when in Spain is visiting filming locations, as you probably know the Tabernas Desert in Almeria was and still is used as the setting for many a Spaghetti Western. Films such as The Good, The Bad & The Ugly, A Fistful of Dollars, A Few Dollars More and Once Upon a Time in America were all largely filmed in the area. I’m starting here with a somewhat less obvious one, the location for  The 1986 Alex Cox film Straight to Hell which starred (to name but a few) Joe Strummer, The Pogues, Elvis Costello, Grace Jones, Dennis Hopper, Sy Richardson and Courtney Love. This set was originally built in the Tabernas Desert for the 1973 Film Chino starring Charles Bronson. We headed down here on our way to San Jose and in typical (of me) fashion we arrived in the midday sun that was hitting the low 40’s and what was supposed to be 1 mile as the crow flies was about 3 miles each way….. Blistering Heat and No Water (not the best combination). As you can see from the photos most of the site has now collapsed and is slowly eroding back into the desert so I guess in another 10 or 15 years or so there will be nothing left here to see except for some roof tiles and broken bottles.  I was rather taken with how close the site is to the motorway but how out in the wilderness it feels. To me there is something quite special about walking around this area knowing how many famous feet have trampled here, In the UK you would expect to see a parking area with an Ice Cream van and people trying to sell you  Cowboy Hats and Cap Guns but in somewhat typical Spanish Fashion it has just been left to crumble away. More Info on these two movies can be found by following the links below: Chino aka Valdez the Half Breed Straight to Hell I will post some other sets I have visited over some time so if you are interested please check back 🙂...

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April 2017 Holiday

Apr 27

April 2017 Holiday

This was to be (hopefully) our first trip of two this year. I like to get out early in the season before it gets too hot, partially to test out gadgets and of course because I love it here. We didn’t have the teenager with us this time so I us a booked a night at the Hotel Galera so we could pretend to act like grown ups. The Gadgets this time included a Parrot BeBop 2 Drone as I really fancied getting some overhead footage of the cave and the surrounding area….. I hadn’t flown it before so there was lots of crashes but I did get a little footage which I will post a link to at the bottom if you are interested. I also bought an LG Minibeam Nano LCD Projector as we have in the past enjoyed sitting out on warm evenings watching films under the verandah….. this didn’t go to plan either as it was about 9 degrees after the sun went down, the idea was great though as this thing will practically fit in your pocket and it is rechargeable. Next was the Celestron Travelscope 70 (Telescope). I bought this based on the fact there is so much visible sky and so little light pollution in this are of Spain, having seen the Milky Way looking spectacular last year I thought we might fancy a go at stargazing (It was fairly cloudy/hazy at night so this didn’t get much use but It did fit into Ryan Air hand luggage. Finally this little media player box that you can plug SD Cards, HDD Drives and Thumb Drives into which in turn plugs into a TV or Projector allowing you to watch pre-downloaded films etc. The media player worked very well and exactly as it should, although we didn’t get to try it with the projector, just the TV (great buy at £35 on eBay)……. anyway less of the advertising and on with the holiday 🙂 We spent the most part of this trip relaxing, having arrived (unusually) not on a Sunday we were able to pop to Baza on the way and pick up some essentials because I remembered that I had not left any Cerveza behind...

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A bit of information about our Cave House

Mar 15

A bit of information about our Cave House

I often have people saying “you have a cave ?, where do you go to the toilet?, does it have stalactites/mites?” etc etc. so I thought I’d post a bit of information about it. Our cave has 13 underground rooms, 2 rooms built on the front and another separate block built room in the yard. It also has a covered verandah. Because it used to be 2 houses it still has 2 front doors but the caves are connected inside via a passage that was dug out more recently. The door on the left of the picture by the Barbecue is a cave store room (which probably used to be home for a Donkey as there is an old feeder inside) this measures approximately 4 metres x 2.8 metres. Moving to the right is the extended part which houses the shower, toilet, bidet and washbasin plus a utility area. The covered verandah measures approximately 3.5 metres square and although I’m not that keen on the look of it, it’s great for being able to sit outside on warm evenings even when it is raining. You can just see the first front door in the left hand side of the verandah. To the right again there is a covered pathway about 1.4 metres wide all the way to the right hand end. You can see the second front door just to the left of the tree. The jacuzzi is at the far right by the tartan blanket. In the right of the foreground is the other building which is basically a small room about 3.5 metres by 2.7 metres with light and electric. At present there are 2 x double rooms (the one on the right is almost 6 metres long), a single room and a twin room. 2 lounges, kitchen, dining roon, breakfast room, 2 dressing rooms, shower room and the room I call the Music Hall which is inside the second front door and contains my stereo and a sofa. On the plan the tunnel that connects the dining room with the music hall is where the two original caves were connected. Most caves (that I have seen) seem to be laid out in a similar way where one...

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