What a glorious day

We have experienced a whole spectrum of weather conditions in the last few days. Just a week ago (the night/morning of 19/20 December) we had winds so strong that they lifted from outside our door a very heavy wooden cupboard that we use to store logs and boots and deposited it down the garden. It had travelled over five terraces, each a metre high, and landed upright in a narrow space between a stone wall and a young tree, having done almost no damage en-route!

image

image

A couple of days later we were sitting in Cómpeta main square before attending a concert in the church (excellent – youth string orchestra) and it was so warm I had to divest myself of my jacket – and I looked up to see a young woman wearing just a tank top and shorts!

image

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day supplied us with much needed rain – and plenty of it, backed up by more exceptionally strong winds. And now, 27 December, it has been absolutely still all day, with beautiful sunshine – a glorious day, perfect for a ride.

image

The Canillas de Albaida end of the goat track where Roly and I take our morning walk

For reasons stated in a previous post, I am wary of riding in strong winds, so between the weather and the social whirl that is Christmas, I have not ridden for quite a few days, so took my opportunity to tack up and get going. Roly was delighted when he noticed my preparations – an opportunity to get away from those annoying little puppies for a few hours. So we set off for a long trek down into the valley and up into the mountains on the other side.

There were many signs of damage from the winds. Oranges and avocados on the ground, lots of branches torn from trees. Luckily the olive harest had been early this year, starting in November and mostly completed before the winds came, but the tracks and roads are still full of fallen olives. The olive harvest here is very labour intensive. The trees grow on very steep slopes and the fruit is shaken from the trees into nets that are slung below the branches. No room for any mechanical assistance on is terrain, although mules are often used to carry the crop home.

image

The route that we take on our ‘cave ride’ includes a long stretch of driveable track, part of which is finished with asphalt but which changes to compressed dirt. During the summer this has compacted so that it has been as hard as concrete under Liana’s hooves, which means walking and trotting only, but today, thanks to the rain, it is soft underfoot which means we can canter and gallop along for miles. We both love it, although it sometimes takes Roly a little while to catch up with us.

This is a lovely circular ride, and we return via La Fabrica, across the river which is running very fast due to the recent rain, and reach home to find that David has been sunning himself on the terrace together with the puppies, who get very excited at the sound of my voice. Poor Roly must be thinking that they have invaded another of his spaces, although he seems slightly less bothered by them outside than indoors.

image

image

image

image

About magwood

Trepidatious Traveller - camino blog is about preparing for and walking the Camino de Santiago. Many future pilgrims have found the blog useful and inspiring, and many who have no plans to walk the camino have simply enjoyed the dialogue http://www.magwood.me
This entry was posted in A view of life, Animals, Horse riding in the mountains of andalucia. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to What a glorious day

  1. Maggie Gardner says:

    Those puppies are so cute!!

    Like

    • magwood says:

      Very cute, but I now have to get serious about re-homing them, as I am off to the UK in just over three weeks and I can’t leave them for David to look after!

      Like

  2. Sounds fabulous. It’s been ages since I was on a horse. You wouldn’t ride in the wild weather we’ve been having but you’ve inspired me to get out this morning; I’m going to get my boots on and climb a hill today. Thanks!

    Like

    • magwood says:

      We’re back to rain and grey sky today. Rain is always good here in southern Spain, but I hate the wind – it’s so destructive. Enjoy your walk!

      Like

I would love some feedback - tell me what you think.....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s