Travels with a Reluctant Holidaymaker: Days 5-10
By the fifth day of the holiday, my resolution to write lots of notes, which can be turned into an amusing series of blog posts, has deteriorated and for the rest of the trip, I resort to mind-mapping the key activities of each day, in the hope that I can dredge up the odd bit of humour or irony when I write it up. So here goes.
I am starting to feel all the exercising; my dodgy knee is definitely protesting. So I take a day off from the treadmill and spend far more time than I should playing games on the iPad. We find a great tapas bar for lunch. The place is empty when we arrive, but gradually fills up. The table behind us is taken by a strange, dark-haired young couple who announce they have been married for two years, but whose conversation implies they have just met. When they start discussing the blond, blue-eyed baby that they both profess to want, I (a) wonder if someone should give them a lesson in genetics and (b) wish I hadn’t left my notebook back in the hotel as some of the dialogue is priceless!
The RH has finished both paperbacks we brought with us. We have loads of books on our iPads, but reading in the sunshine is too difficult, so we go looking for a shop selling English books. After a fruitless search in the tiny village square, we return to the hotel shop, to find a full rack of novels. As we leave, he clutching his new reading material, I find that I have accidentally bought two strapless sun-dresses at the same time!
Having spent the rest of the week eating tapas and other Spanish dishes, I develop a craving for pizza. So we head across the road to the village square. On the way we pass the shoe shop where RH bought his sandals and I accidentally buy a pair of sparkley evening shoes. If the RH was writing this blog instead of me, it would probably be called Travels with an Accidental Shopper!
Our final full day and although it starts off cloudy and a touch chilly (that’s Tenerife chilly, of course, around 15 degrees; not back home in Devon chilly, which would be much colder!), by lunchtime it is hot and sunny. We stroll along the boardwalk for lunch and then sit under a grass umbrella watching the para-gliders coming down from the mountains and landing on the beach in front of us.
Our final meal is at the Tepanyaki, the hotel’s Japanese restaurant. It is tiny, serving just twenty-four people over the course of the evening, and only accepting three or four bookings at a time. We sit entranced as the chef cooks our dishes right in front of us. He is a real showman, with flames spouting to the ceiling, a model Mount Teide made out of onion, and bowls of rice that he flips like a pancake before handing them out. And despite all the ‘mucking about’, the food is delicious.
We reach the airport to find our plane is delayed by two hours. We are told it is because the weather is so bad in UK, the outgoing flight has not arrived yet. This is strange, as we’re not aware the weather is particularly bad in London. The plane arrives in due course and we finally take off over three hours late. The moaning couple from the outbound flight (see Day 2) are back – and they are still moaning.
The pilot admits it was nothing to do with the weather but, in his words, ‘the plane’s computer broke’! We’re just relieved it happened on the way out – and before they took off. And we’re really glad we decided to spend another night in Heathrow before returning to Devon. From touch down, through check-in, to sitting down to dinner, was a mere fifty minutes. When I was travelling on business, I used to judge a country and its airports by the touch-down to hotel time; and Slovenia was the best, with forty minutes. But this comes a close second.
As we board the Rail Air bus and head for the M4, it is snowing and although it’s not sticking, visibility is very poor. As the train rolls through Somerset and Devon, we note the flooded fields. We are reminded that whatever the season in the Canaries, winter is still with us back home.
I hope you have enjoyed this light-hearted view of our trip to Tenerife. Look out for another Travels With… series later this year when I head for the Outer Hebrides with my sisters. (Although if it’s anything like this series, perhaps I should rename it Eating Around With…)