No we are not on drugs (not that we will to admit anyway) , neither have we lost the plot (well maybe a little), nor has our site been hacked ! In The horse that ate an iPad we share our top 10 unusual, unexpected and unforseen experiences from our latest trip to our cave house.
1.The horse that ate an iPad.
As a child, I was kicked by a horse so they have never really been in my good books. I even tried to overcome this by riding a horse a couple of years ago, however, the resulting bruises from bouncing up and down with little control did nothing to change my opinion.
Josie however loves every creature in the world (except moths and werewolves) and so when one of our new neighbours appeared with his horse she went over to be introduced. Whilst she was stroking said beast, it nonchalantly lowered its head and bit down on our iPad that Josie was holding at the time. There was a loud crack as the screen broke and now a new iPad has been added to our list of purchases. For me it simply reinforces my view of these four-legged demons.
2. Don’t mix up a tintoreria with a tanatorio
The Spanish language has a number of what are called false friends. These are 2 words that sound or look similar but have completely different meanings. The example is the English word embarrassed and the Spanish word embarazada (which means pregnant).
I however almost took this to a whole new level by confusing 2 Spanish words with very different meanings !
I was looking for a dry cleaners to get all the bedding washed before we headed back to the Turks and Caicos. I knew the word for dry cleaners (tintoreria) and driving along caught the glimpse of a sign above a building. It had a lot of similar letters and at my level of Spanish I am still finding that letters sometimes get jumbled. Pulling into the car park my brain luckily registered that the word just didn’t match what I was looking for and a flick through my Spanish pocket dictionary reconfirmed the word for dry cleaner. I couldn’t however find the meaning of the other word, which was tanatorio. Once back at the cave I googled it to be presented with the following description:
3. You need to keep shoes by the side of the bed
It’s very simple really, if you live in a cave then the floor remains very cool, especially if you have terracotta floor tiles. Stepping out of bed whilst half asleep and putting your bare feet on the floor can very easily shock you awake.
I never managed to remember this, Josie on the other hand perfected the art of stepping out of bed and straight into a pair of shoes.
4. Beer is a meal !
I have tried to convince Josie of this for many years, in Andalucia though it really is true !
If you buy a beer (or other alcoholic drink) it comes with a free tapas. And it’s not just a piece of dry bread – I have had tortilla, cheeses, meatballs and more accompany my beer. Whats more they are pretty reasonable portions and the more you drink the more you get to eat.
What could possibly go wrong ?
5. Set your alarm or you may never wake up.
Its amazing both how quiet and how dark it is in a cave bedroom. There is absolutely no ambient light, it can also be quiet confusing as when you wake up you have no idea what the time is.
We ended up having to set our alarm for the not too disgusting hour of 08:00 AM otherwise we would have ended up staying in bed for most of the day.
6. It snows in May.
Stepping out of our cave we were confronted with snow falling from the sky and swirling around our cave entrance. At least that’s what it looked like at first sight. It turns out that the black poplar trees next to us distribute their seeds as widely as possible by carrying them in the wind. The seeds (or fluff) look like large-scale dandelion seeds, so you can imagine the confusion. They get everywhere, in the cave, in your drink, even in your mouth if not careful. Still its just for a couple of weeks a year and I’d trade them for mosquitos and no see ums any day of the week.
7. Dinner doesn’t exist before 8PM
The Spanish work later and so simply eat later. It’s an easy mistake to turn up at your favourite restaurant (as we did) at 7PM (ish), find it closed and think it must not open on that particular day. Then after eating elsewhere, return to your car only to find your favourite restaurant now full of happy diners !
It turns out that eating at a restaurant before 8PM makes you stand out as a tourist even more than wearing white socks and sandals !
8. The world ends daily between 2PM and 4PM
Siesta time is taken very seriously in rural Andalucia. Wandering through the town of Baza at 2:30 PM was like wandering through a ghost town. The occasional person scuttled from one piece of shade to another … all that was missing was a high noon showdown and tumbleweeds 🙂
9. Don’t swat flies against your cave walls.
Hit a fly too hard and chunks of paint and plaster accompany the dead fly on the floor. Makes you very unpopular with the missus.
10. Under 2 euro bottles of rioja are really quite good.
Wine is not just for special occasions, it is quite often cheaper (and more enjoyable) than water. So maybe rioja is also a meal ?
So … Who are one foot in the cave ?
We (Danny and Josie) have spent the last 10 years living and working in the Caribbean. In 2015 we decided we wanted to move closer to family and friends so bought a cave house in the Granada region of Andalucia, Spain. We moved there full time in January 2017. Now we write about our experiences of cave living and how we are adapting to life in Spain.
We also have a Facebook page full of pictures, experiences and information that we have found useful along the way. If its your thing, you can also follow us on Instagram 🙂
5 words related to this blog entry …
Horse – El Caballo
Moth – La Palomilla
Shoes – Zapatos
Meal – La Comida
Snow – Nieve