Catching up

Two ready to send to the swap. The challenge is to use grid based patterns.

Hello world, I hope you are full of fun, vim and vigour, as I am myself. (That may be  me fooling myself but if it works, I’ll go along with it.)

My previous post was a bit short and to the point because we were away in Spain and typing on a tablet does not come naturally to me. How people use their phones for these things is beyond me. I like a keyboard. We had a good time though, in spite of our first full day there being inclement, as they say. The rain in Spain fell mainly on me and the loved one.  He’s gone all rusty now but we’re pretending it’s a tan. (I ended up with prickly heat, which is always a good sign!) The hotel was excellent and right down on the seafront, which I love.

Benalmadena , where we stayed, and Torremolinos, the next town along the coast, are not pretty Spanish villages. They are overdeveloped tourist destinations with very little of their original character left, although it is still there if you look for it.  Both are full of Irish bars, bars showing football on tv all day, bars with bad English and American food and shops selling some of the most awful things you could ever wish to see. (Bottle openers in the shape of sexual organs, aprons and tee shirts with rude words and pictures… you get the idea.) In spite of this, we love the area.

Firstly, we go out of season, in the Autumn, Winter and Spring, when the kids are in school and the people who think football shirts are a fashion statement are back in the UK. (Alright, they ARE a fashion statement, they say, “Look, I have no dress sense.”) Secondly, it’s cheaper than high season and the loved one does love a bargain. Thirdly, in among the above mentioned delights, there are plenty of nice places to eat and drink too. And, most importantly, it is in one of the loveliest geographic locations you could wish for.

See what I mean?

The Marina in Benalmadena is one of those strange places built by someone who must have been on mind altering substances at the time. It looks like an over iced wedding cake floating on the water and yet it is just perfect. Explain that if you can – I can’t.

We usually hire a car and go off into the wild blue yonder and believe me, that yonder can be very wild and blue indeed. If you visit the area, don’t stick to the coast, go up into the hills. Go to Coin, Mijas, (well, Mijas is a bit of a tourist trap too but it’s a very lovely tourist trap, really.) Alhaurin and Ronda.

Not my pic but…

The Roman remains and aqueduct at Ronda are amaaaaazing. And then there’s Malaga, the regional capital and the most glorious mix of modern and medieval and all styles in between.

The play of sun and shade here is wonderful.

 

 

 

This visit, we met up with some old friends of the loved one. The two men had served their apprenticeships together in the 1960s, that’s how old! Although we have kept in touch via Christmas cards and Facebook, this was the first time we had met up in over 20 years.  They have a house inland at Fuente de Piedra, where they spend a lot of their time, although they don’t quite live out there all year round. It’s a beautiful place, on the edge of a National Park and we intend to visit them properly  next time we are in the area. They drove down and we went into Malaga to sit in a swish bar by the harbour, watching the cruise liners and catching up.

It was a LOT busier than this when we were there.

In complete contrast, we then drove out of town to have late lunch in a chiringuito on the beach. We shared a huge salad, freshly caught grilled sardines and calamares, all of which were delicious and the whole lot cost 47 euro, including drinks.  The loved one was in heaven. The place was full of locals, always a good sign, and noisy in the extreme but the buzz was fantastic and I would recommend it.

We then went back to our hotel, where it was Happy hour in the bar from 5 till 6 and drinks were half price. After two very large champagne cocktails, I was, as we say round here, daft as a brush and I just sat grinning vacantly at the world in general. No wonder the English have such a terrible reputation in Europe.

So, still grinning vacantly, although the cocktails have worn off by now, I’m sitting waiting for Diva Day and wondering what she has in store for us.  And this is what she has to say this week:

So i thought a great challenge would be to use your MacNCheese (or Kraft Dinner as we call it in Canada) tangles.  No pressure! Enjoy the process, love each moment.  Do the ones that feel great.

So I did and I don’t even know the name of the pattern. It’s one of those where I just HAVE to concentrate and it’s simplicity itself. I’ve done it on an ATC so I can use it in one of my swaps too. 

In the meantime, we had a Stitch n Bitch meeting at our house and the project was the pinwheel picture I showed you last time. Well, what with lunch and gossip, we got most but not all of the drawing done but in the end, only two of the girls completed everything, including getting it into the frame.  However, I was absolutely thrilled. The finished pieces looked great and everyone said what a good time they had, so I’m totally P as P.  (Pleased as Punch, Proud as a Peacock…) I’ll post pictures next time.

I did miss last week’s Diva Challenge because I don’t like the pattern very much, it doesn’t feel very zen to me but I’ve since decided to give it a go and this is what I came up with. It looks a bit Aztec and the colouring is a bit slapdash but I may use it again.

And these are the last of the swap tiles that I should have sent in January! The challenge was to use geometric or grid based patterns, which is not my forte but I gave some of them a Maggibee twist to see what would happen.

This is Puff, stretched a bit to see what happens.
And good old Cubine, always a favourite. This time with a bit of red glitter pen for a change.
I hadn’t tried this one before, Buttercup buy name then stretched. The background is Measles, although there aren’t any complete pieces.
This is Stoic and one I cannot remember the name of – age is a terrible thing.

 

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8 thoughts on “Catching up

  1. Thank you so much for sharing your travels, of places I’ve never heard! Love the champagne story…great works! I like the Cubine work, testing out all sorts of variations. Cheryl

  2. Enjoyable to see the variations you came up with on your swap tiles. And thanks for sharing the pictures of your trip to Spain, they brought back happy memories of my own trip there almost 20 years ago.

  3. When I read “the loved one” I immediately thought of Dr. Gemma. Then when I read about a stitch ‘n bitch I wondered if you had ever listened to her knitting podcast. Anyway, your trip looked delightful and I do like your mac ‘n cheese tile!

  4. Nice pictures of your wonderful trip to Spain!
    I like your different tiles, my absolute favorite is the one with the streched Buttercup, lovely colours and beautiful compositon.

  5. Great swap pieces and I love your Diva! Thanks for sharing your travel stories and pics… always such a great read;-) I should have my swap ATC’s out to you shortly. I just need to get to the post office for International stamps.

  6. Thank for sharing your travels in Spain! It sounds fantastic! Love all your Tiles! My favourite is Buttercup….but then I’m partial to purple! 🙂

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