27. Oct, 2021

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WEDNESDAY 27-10-21

Unfortunately the down side of spending the night in a car park, in a valley is that you can end up without internet access, and that's what happened to us last night. The phones were showing that they had a signal of sorts but the MiFi network was showing and doing nothing.

As we were all on our own it was time to roll out the 'Grease' DVD with the sound fed through the TV's sound bar. Ah! Music as it's meant to be heard.

The night was very cold and it was just as well The Chef suggested we change back to the 10.5 tog duvet before we left Benicassim. This resulted in our waking this morning warm, but in a living space that was quite cold. Not to worry - The Chef's hero, WeakBladderMan, leapt in to action and was soon out of bed, in to the bathroom and then to the heating and hot water control switch of our now thankfully, functioning-again gas boiler. By the time we got up everywhere was nice and warm with lashings of hot water.

As we only have 100ltrs of water to last us for four days we sacrificed a shower and instead had a good wash using Clinell 'wet wipes' and hot soapy water. As for my morning shave I had to make do with allowing my pretty good Braunbattery razor chew away at my beard until it felt smoothish.

If we only flush the toilet when we really need to we can make the toilet cassette last three days. "Ah Gee Whizz WeakBladderMan" I hear you cry, "You're gonna  be away from facilities for four days. How'll ya possibly cope?" Well, I'll tell you. Having deliberately positioned the vehicle last night so that the habitation door was not on the 'blind side' should anybody attempt anything naughty, resulted in the side of the vehicle with the grey water, toilet cassette and fresh water tank filler being next to a low wall with lots of bushes immediately on the other side, before a long drop to the river, I was in a position to ensure that at least one of those bushes will grow up bigger than those around it having been suitably fed, and then watered with what little water was in the grey water tank.

When we were ready, and again it was quite early aided by the fact we couldn't read the news channels etc without an internet connection, we hit the road.

Our destination is Castro Urdiales on the shore of the Bay of Biscay and not far from Santander. I didn't expect to do it all in one day and so we were going to do what felt comfortable today and then knock off the remainder tomorrow. At about 11:00 we stopped for a coffee and doughnut, then again at about 13:30 for lunch.

It was there that I uploaded yesterdays entry on the blog. I decided to start a new chapter even though it will be a short one.

We were making good progress thanks in part to the E90/AP2 showing up on the road atlas as a toll road, but in fact isn't any longer. Our luck wasn't to last though because as we hit Zaragoza it changed to AP68, a toll road, and we have the ticket in the cab ready to pay our dues when we leave it.

En-route we entered Rioja wine country and there were vineyards everywhere with vine leaves turning golden as autumn arrives. In celebration I stopped at a Truckstop and bought a bottle of the stuff to enjoy with The Chef's gastronomic delight this evening.

I suggested to The Chef that instead of doing our usual and staying overnight on a Truckstop with the HGV's we should look at parking at a Picnic Area. My thinking being that as we get closer to Bilbao and Santander we're going to pick up even more HGV's and they're going to be needing those parking spaces themselves. So that's what's happened. If I had wanted to continue the journey I think we could have reached Castro Urdiales  by about 17:00, but what's the point? It would simply leave us with another night to spend parked up at or near the town.

Right now The Chef is sat outside on the grass reading her book having been sensible enough to park our chairs far enough away from the piles of dog sh*t left there by irresponsible dog owners who are too idle to pick it up and deposit it in a bin. Not surprisingly flies continue to harass us. Not little flies like we had along some of the Costa del Boy, but those big persistent Ghandi-flies. Bloody things. They've plagued us for most of this trip.

I did take some video shots yesterday with my cheapie video camera replacement I bought way back when in Nice, France on a previous trip. But the editing software is choosing to come out in sympathy with the gas cylinders, and is very slow at doing what it should, a bit like those overpaid bolshie Taffs who currently work at home for the DVLA in Swansea. I'll have another go at doing it this evening before uploading today's tosh, but if it can't be done then I'll insert it at a later date when we get home.

So today we covered about 280 miles with about 80 miles to go tomorrow morning after which we'll be parked up close to the beach at Castro Urdiales , well either there or outside their bullring.

So that's it. I'm looking out of a side a side window at a very nice view whilst The Chef is enjoying the sunshine and reading her book. We are parked in such a way that we have a bit of slack in front of us so that if one of those damned noisy HGV's with a refrigeration unit on it, that will run on and off all night, parks behind us I'll be able to move forward a bit.