Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Village life not quite so idyllic in August

It is the month of hell in the Port, August. July definitely wasn't as busy as usual but come August, the place became flooded with people. We don't go to the main beach in the summer as it is too busy and the pleasure boats anchor in the bay. Worst of all our little coves are well known to the locals and some visitors. Now, the Spanish are known as the loudest people in Europe and this has been confirmed by the WHO. If they arrive at any beach, the Spanish and especially their kids drown everything out. We go to the beach at two or three, when everyone is having lunch and all is good until five, when all hell breaks loose.

The roads are busy, the local markets are frustrating with crowds of people, many squeezing everything in sight. There are bands playing down at the beach. Most don't start until 11:30 at night. We can hear them quite clearly quite a distance away. The hearing doctors in Spain must do a roaring trade because of the number of decibels rocketing around the village. Deafening! Fortunately, this doesn't go on every night.

Our neighbours have turned up. We always thought it was the owner’s sons and daughter and their families causing the noise but with different visitors at different times, we discovered it is the old lady who causes the noise. She doesn't talk, she shouts. Two of the dogs are fairly well behaved but add the old lady's dog and the three of them bark constantly. It is difficult for us to have a conversation.

On the plus side all of this makes us drive to St. Pere Pescador, where there is a seven-kilometre-long beautiful sandy beach, where you can find your own spot for the day. As a bonus there is a wonderful beach-side restaurant run by a Dutch lady, which has excellent food. It does take us an hour to get there but the drive is mostly over the mountain and then through farmland. Yesterday, we chatted to a Belgian couple who had four stunning Irish Wolfhounds with them at the beach. They were even well behaved enough to be taken into restaurants. I'd like to see that.

The produce in the large Figueres market is excellent right now. Today we bought a dozen zucchini flowers, which we just ate for dinner. I think they were the best we ever had. Stuffed with crumbled feta, a little oregano, pine nuts and black currants then dipped in a simple batter of flour and water and cooked in olive oil. So good.

We probably have about 23 more days of this to go. Believe me we are counting them down.

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