14.07.18 — Travel

A Murcian Weekend

As mentioned in my previous two blog posts (which were all about catching up), I spent last weekend down in the south of Spain, meeting up with my mum and sister in Murcia for 48 hours of sun, pool and relaxation in my auntie’s flat. It promised to be a rather different trip to the last time I visited back in February, with the temperatures soaring and a lack of car meaning we’d be confined to the pool – but having come down from the heat of Madrid, I definitely wasn’t going to complain about that…

Arriving in Murcia on the train

I arrived late on Friday night, having gotten a train from Madrid Atocha at about 5pm, and with a plan in place and a generous dose of luck, my mum and sister landed perfectly on time and we were able to coordinate the taxi to pick me up from the station just after it had picked them up from the airport. I do love it when a plan comes together!

That night we took it pretty easy, cracking open some beers that my mum had left in the fridge just 24 hours before – which I shall now have to explain! Literally less than 24 hours before flying out to Murcia, my mum had been at my auntie’s place with my auntie, uncle, and dad. When she’d found some cheap flights and a hole in her work schedule to return with my sister the day after flying back to England, she jumped on the chance, and I also hopped on board with the plans as I had a free weekend too.

After I laid out an aperitif and we’d had a good catch up, we all headed to bed, rising relatively early to make the most of my only full day with them. After a trip to the shop with Ellie for some fresh bread to make pan con tomate, a typical Spanish breakfast, we slathered ourselves in suncream and headed out into the Murcian heat.

Walking to the shop on Saturday morning
Lounging around by the pool

After splashing around, sunbathing, and getting through quite a lot of a book I’d brought along, it was eventually time to head indoors to rest from the sun – and what better excuse for some indoor time than an England match! I was tasked with the job of cooking up a late lunch whilst Ellie had the game on in the next room, but I managed to catch the end once my courgette carbonara was finally ready.

My favourite part of the match has to have been when my dad, all on his own at home in England, sent us a photo of his dinner which he had decorated in support of England. I treasure the photo because everything about it is so English – from the decoration to the food cooked and even down to the fact that we put tomato ketchup on mashed potatoes. It had to be the most British photo I have ever seen in my life:

Dad's England dinner

Once the game was over, and we’d lounged around the resort some more, it was time to put our glad rags on and head to the resort’s lovely restaurant for dinner. Me and Ellie decided that we’d stick to tradition in having a photo shoot under a lovely floral pagoda, and this year we were in luck as the bright pink flowers were in full bloom.

Ellie ready to go out
Looking up at the flowers

Once up at the restaurant we enjoyed a lovely meal, although we didn’t go too overboard on the food after our rather late lunch. As we ate we had a good catch up and indulged in plenty of cheeky gossiping, all whilst enjoying the ambience of a Latin band who were playing quite a few songs that I knew.

The sun setting as we arrived at the restaurant

The next day we continued our relaxation marathon, with plenty more lounging, chatting, and a few intense games of Uno along the way. With my train back to Madrid departing at 6:30pm, however, it was soon time for me to repack my backpack and grab a taxi to the nearby town to catch the Renfe. I had planned to arrive an hour before the train was scheduled to leave just in case the taxi was a bit late, but in the end it was bang on time, and so I grabbed a drink in a bar and then meandered around the small town for a short while, taking photos of the lovely pastel aesthetic that it had going on.

I quite enjoyed just wandering around small-town Murcia for a moment.

Wandering around small town Murcia
A bridge flies over the railway line
Waiting on the platform

Once I’d arrived at the train station, I got chatting to a family from Madrid who were heading back home from their holidays, but eventually the train arrived and we had to part ways to board our respective carriages. The journey back was used to finish up my blog post on my time spent in Asturias a few weeks ago, but it was quite a late and tiring journey, made worse by a half-hour delay which we suffered just as we were reaching the southernmost outskirts of Madrid.

Somewhere in Castilla La Mancha

I eventually rocked back up in Madrid at about half past midnight, with the only saving grace being that the walk home was relatively rapid and mostly downhill. Once I’d starfished on my bed and pretty much fell straight asleep, I woke up to the sound of my alarm believing that it was way too soon and must be a nightmare – but no, there it was blaring, and off to work I had to drag myself.

Work this week has been as much fun as ever, however, and so I honestly can’t complain – I just really dislike early mornings! It’s been busy too, with a lovely little party to celebrate Erretres launching a Master in UX Design alongside the Universidad Europea. It’s bittersweet, then, that yesterday was my last day for a few weeks, as I’ll miss the vibrant atmosphere of the office, even if a couple of weeks of lie-ins are most desperately needed.

My holidays start today then, with the most exciting thing being that my friends Luisa and Woody are here in Madrid for the MadCool festival! We’ve managed to meet a couple of times for a quick drink and small wanders through the city, but tonight is the last night of the festival, so tomorrow we’ll be sure to have a good snoop around and I’ll be back with updates on what we get up to very soon!

The plans for the rest of my summer holidays after that include a meal to celebrate Heidi’s graduation with her mum next week, then a train straight up to Oviedo to meet Kevin and head on a little road trip of the northern coast, all before heading back to England from Bilbao to spend a week with friends and family. In England, naturally, I have plenty more little day trips lined up too, but I’ll leave the details of all those until after my return to Madrid.

As you can probably tell, it promises to be a crazy couple of weeks from now onwards, so today I’m going to take the opportunity to catch a few rays in the park and spend some alone time. I’d like to tell you when I’ll be back with more photos and updates, but it seems like I’m going to be AWOL for a short while – but on my return there’ll be plenty to share.

Until then!