One feature of this particular campsite is the cats.  There seem to be about 14 of them and I have started naming them; Ugly,

Ugly!

Ugly!

witchy1 and 2, Fatso…. They are flaming annoying, turning up the instant you start cooking and one managed to sneak into the tent.  Tim has been trying water aversion therapy…..  It seems to work as they have started giving our tent a wide berth.  (Unfortunately we later found some of the little devils in the tent; I just hope they don’t have fleas!)

On Wednesday we cycled down into the local town of Vilanova il la geltru.  It was a great trip there because it was all downhill.  The port was a nice enough place with a reasonable cycle route along it.

2 bull

3 Bromptons abroad

4 view

5 view 2

The marina showed just how much money there is around here.  We thought this would make a nice Christmas present, but we couldn’t work out how to get it past all the security. 

6 boat

After a beer and no tapas (it’s much more expensive around here) we decided to find our way back to the campsite.  How come is it that when you go really wrong it has to be up the steepest hill?  By the time we got back to Camel, we were nicely warmed up (red faced and rather out of breath) and we had a better idea as to why most people have electric bikes or mopeds with them.

This is a very busy and friendly campsite, with a hod load of Brits here.  A lot of people spend about 6 months or more in Spain every year, many just staying at one campsite.  Many of them get free pitches by doing jobs around the campsites or teaching English.  After supper we decamped to the bar to escape the rain, which was once again hammering down, where an old chap was playing Christmas carols on his electric keyboard for, I suspect, free drinks.  He wasn’t bad either.

On Friday we decided to drive to Andorra to earn another flag (I still blame Ralph Hardwick for this!).  We left the coast with perfect weather and drove through some seriously beautiful countryside, but then the clouds closed in and we just had to use our imagination for a bit. 

7 castle

12 return 1

8 misty 1

9 Misty 2

As we emerged from one tunnel, however, the sun came out and all was glorious. 

10 Post misty

It took us just under three hours to reach the Andorran border and it was a lot less exciting as we went through. 

11 Andorra

All you could see were shopping malls because Andorra is a low tax destination.  Sad sacks that we are, we bought some bits for the next few breakfasts, had a very nice lunch of some local chickpea and sausage stew and then turned round and headed back to the campsite.

We ended up, as usual, in the campsite bar because it gets very very chilly sitting outside once the sun goes down.  We only wanted some tapas and a salad but the portions were HUGE.  The nice piano man was back and he played very pleasantly, despite the fact we were the only people in the bar.  We were wondering where all the Spanish people were on a Friday night, but we soon found out when we tried to go to sleep.  I commented that the Spanish sure know how to party, but Tim thought they were just bloomin’ noisy.

On Saturday we went to visit Taragona.  I had long wanted to go there because we had passed the town several times over the years and the old town sounded good.  It was pretty good, with lots of Roman and other old bits, but I didn’t really warm to the place. 

13 Taragona 1

The old town had narrow streets…

16 bent sign

Bent stop sign

And someone local had a sense of humour

15 Taragona 3

We stood and gawped at a wedding part entering the mighty fine cathedral

18 Cathedral wedding

and I felt very sorry for the bride shivering in her lovely gown, waiting for all the rest of the wedding party to get themselves into the church.  She was no spring chicken and her dad was not quite with it and kept standing on her dress.

There is a lot of separatist feeling around here, as we gathered from some of the graffiti

17 Bombs

And, apparently they love building towers, but we could only find a photo in the tourist office..

14 Taragona 2

We did find a good bar for beer and non complimentary tapas, but it wasn’t bad value.  And I found another cow on roller skates, yeh!

19 ale hop

I didn’t pay attention on the way back to the campsite and so I didn’t do my map reading job at all (let at all well) so Tim ended up going too far north.  We let the sat nag (I have given in to the spell check, because this is exactly how we think of the old bat) take us across county through some beautiful and very difficult roads that made Tim concentrate very hard.  I loved this fortified town but I couldn’t take any other photos as the roads were so windy I had to hang on tight.

20 Fortified town

Luckily we ended up right by the campsite by sheer dumb luck (Harry Potter McGonagal quote there). 

When we arrived back, there were several Spanish families cooking paella on special gas cookers, looking like they were having a blast. 

21 gas paella

There are loads of rather nice Spanish children cycling and skating around the place and there are more people here than I have seen at any other campsite this trip.  I suspect that, in the summer, there are more people here than the native population of Andorra!  I have managed to get lost in the place twice and when Tim and I went for a stroll on Sunday evening it was hard to get our heads around just how big this campsite is.

P1000827

Many of the tourers are getting ready for the festive season

22 Merry Xmas

We now have just one more night camping before we go to visit our friends in the French side of the Pyrenees and I am getting very excited about returning home to see my friends and family.  Will my granddaughter be walking yet?…..

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