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Spain/Portugal travels/experiences

  • Submitted by: Danny, United Kingdom
  • Submission Date: 09th Jun 2006

I want to start with myself and my brother, I am now 43 ad at the time of my first holiday as an adult I went for two weeks when I was 17 to Majorca, that was my first taste of a hot country with friendly people and gave me a passion for travel.
We spent two weeks in a hotel and it was a bit of a lager lout/nightclubbing holiday in Arenal the only memorable thing was that we met friends who lived near us who were staying at a nearby hotel so we hung out with them for a while.
We visited the famous Cuevas del Drach [underground caves in Porto Cristo which was fun.
When we returned we both had itchy feet and wanted a longer stay in Spain.
We saved up some money and packed our jobs in [at a bakery] and bought rucksacks etc and a train ticket that would take us as far as Alicante and back for a period of three months.
We se off for Dover to get the ferry into Calais [France] then caught the train south, slept the night on Perpignan station and carried on south over the border to Spain.
At PortBou we disembarked and slept on the beach for two nights in our sleeping bags I remember the rocky Costa Brava coast and huge thunderstorms, on the second night we were soaked wet in a deluge of rain, we noticed hippy-like people huddling together under a great rocky outcrop and they seemed to be laughing at us.
We got on the train again and looked at the passing scenery of Tossa de Mar and Callela de Mar and thought of these as typical touristy places and as such scorned them.
Eventually came to Barcelona and rented a seedy hostel room ,we went out to investigate our surroundings but by then it was pitch black and we only saw a lone prostitute plying her trade, went back to bed and got the early train to Valencia the next morning.
When we arrived in Valencia we booked up a nice looking room in an old apartment block near the bull ring, our landlady was a woman called Marisa who seemed very friendly, we lounged around on the beach looked at some architecture and went out at night on the pull, but with no success.
After a month of this we decided to use our ticket to its max and headed for Alicante, this seemed a livelier place and we took a room near the sea
The beach was lovely [postiguet] and we spent a lot of time there, at the time there was a fiesta [fogueiras] people were dancing and merrymaking in the streets and throwing lemons at great paper Mache figures parading through the streets we were getting drunk on the red wine and it was about 9pm when we made friends with a group of Spanish girls/boys and carried on partying with them, two could speak a little English and for three weeks after we hung around with them and became close friends it was 1982 the world cup year but we weren’t interested in football we decided o go to a small town called Caudete and I remember walking wearily for miles through orchard groves of oranges and lemons, it was beautiful but tiring as the rucksacks were heavy we took the train again to another little town called Monforte del cid which was lovely and we booked a room for the night that evening we met some locals in the municipal park which seemed to be the centre of civilisation! some nice women were amongst them so we got chatting and making jokes, a couple of gipsy types joined us and got a bit aggressive we weren't frightened as we were both karate trained but didn’t want to fight in a strange country so just wrestled and beat them.
We set our tents up but the local bobby said we couldn’t and offered us a room in the cell for the night which we accepted; he took our passports for safekeeping.
The following day he invited us to dinner and it was a splendid affair with maybe pigeon legs with aniseed alcohol [the local producer] we returned to England because of lack of funds.

Next instalment to be continued-Portugal/Spain.
We eventually ran out of money and had to travel back so all in all we were there for about three months
My brother did a college course in London quickly followed by myself and life carried on.
4 years later my bruv split up with his girl and came to me saying that he wanted to spend Christmas in Spain and would I go with him? I said yes so we went back.

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