Tuesday, February 24, 2009

We saw some Flamingoes - honest

Last Thursday saw a full coachload of friends and supporters set off for a day trip. Over the past few months the ultimate destination of this trip has changed a number of times so although it wasn't billed as a mystery tour those of us who had sat in meetings where each new possibility was raised kept our fingers crossed

Our first stop for the usual tostada and coffee. Later we returned for a pretty reasonable lunch.

Excitement mounted as we then headed for Fuente de Piedra and the Flamingoes. It is early in the season for them but the winter was wet enough to encourage hopes that they would be there and they were. BUT only those with binoculars could actually see anything very much. There was a small group who were clearly very pink but mostly they were white. Still all around were other water birds and the weather was terrific with a gentle breeze so nobody was complaining (except possibly you as I couldn't get a photo, sorry). If you go independently it seems you can get a bit closer with a car than is possible with a coach.

So after lunch it was on to Estepa. First impressions were good as we approached along a country road and could see the castle on top of the hill with almond trees in blossom reaching the road. Between then all was green after the recent rains. The coach took us up to the castle which presents rather a strange sight as it is the process of being restored so medieval stones were butressed by plain concrete.

The monastery of the Franciscans at the other end of the hill was closed to the public. it looked rather German than Spanish. It would be intersting to hear if anyone knows how well occupied it is as the building looked well maintained and was quite large.
We followed this with a ride through Estepa and then to the chocolate factory which only makes chocolates between September and Christmas. Never mind, there was cafe for those of us who wanted a little tea and a fancy and lots of good local produce - including chocolate - on sale.

A final view of Estepa before the bus home to bed.

The trip turned out to be a good fundraiser for the theatre so thanks to all who came, we hope you enjoyed it.

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