More or less everything I knew about Spain I learned from Fawlty Towers, until two weeks ago when I departed these shores via the medium of Stansted for a week in Andalucia with Mike/Cline, Louise/Adrian, Chef and Andy. My goals were sunshine, relaxation, reading and sight-seeing, roughly in that order.
We flew to Malaga and drove in a convoy of three cars (don’t ask) an hour or so north on roads that became ever more crinkly and decrepit. Our villa, located 7km from Valle de Abdalajis, lay up a dirt track 1.01 cars wide and bordered by rockface and air. Stunning views, naturally: you always get stunning views half way up mountains in the middle of nowhere.
Thus began a week of expeditions (or the avoidance thereof) of varying lengths to places of interest. And a week of navigational hilarity in which we, again, forgot lesson #1: it is not permitted to allow Chef to navigate within two hours of mealtimes.
Places visited by some or all of us included Antequera, noted for its mountain backdrop shaped like a stereotypical Native American profile; El Chorro, with gorge and comedy walkways for climbers; Cordoba, which apparently has a bridge (I didn’t go); Puerto Banús with its nobs and yachts; the Alhambra at Granada, which is not a bingo hall; and Gibraltar, where you don’t turn your back on the apes if you value your crisps.
Amusingly, while waiting our turn to go round the posh bits of the Alhambra, I noticed that I was being watched by a gentleman sitting on a bench. I glanced over; he was rather obviously giving me the once-over, and smiling. After verifying that my flies were properly zipped, I wore matching socks, etc, I mentioned it to Mike and he confirmed my suspicions. Next time I looked, the gentleman’s male companion had also engaged scanners. And before I knew it he’d pulled out his camera and was deploying tactic #94, Taking a Photo of Someone Interesting While Pretending to Photograph a Friend.
Naturally I took a photo of them as he did so.
Then he got his camcorder out. Big cowardy custard that I am, I let them get on with it rather than go over and talk to them. However, I am now dedicating my life to discovering those photos and that footage.