Spain, Valencia, Alicante

La Marina to Elche - 21.2 km - Thursday 14th February 2008

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Fairly quiet roads with a couple of exceptions

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Diary - Top

We caught the 7am Cartagena bus for the last time, getting out at La Marina. From there we walked on back roads to Elche or Elx. Elx is full of parks with mature trees. After Elx, we headed towards Alicante. Part of this stretch was on the main road. Later we discovered a much nicer and quieter parallel road. The weather was still cool but much milder than the previous days with lighter winds.

We get the 7 am bus again. There are no ladies. Either they have all found a client or the police have been along. Neil will be able to eat his lunch.

At La Marina, the bus stop where you get out is slightly further north than the one where you get in. This means that there were a few metres we had not covered. We don't insist on crossing the road to fill in gaps but do go back to at least level with where we were. Today this had the added advantage of making it possible to look in Caroline's window to choose a snack. They all looked very sweet so we didn't bother but set off towards Elx. There were various routes on offer.

We decided on the middle length one which was quite nice but not too long. Most of the route was on roads but we were able to leave the main Elx road before La Foia and by-pass the town. Although it is nice bypass the towns, there is no chance of a Valencia tart. Later we had to rejoin the fierce and a black doggy decided to come with us. He was a nightmare because he kept crossing backwards and forwards across the road putting himself, us and the cars in jeopardy. Eventually we tried shouting at him. This seemed to work for a time but then he came trotting back. Finally when there was a good gap in the traffic we threw a stone at his feet and shouted again. This seemed to work and he went hum.

It is still very windy but warmer inland. We kept finding tree places to have a break in the lee. I have still got a blister on my left pinky and brusolosis. We have our first lunch in an almond orchard just this side of Elx and then head into the town. Our plan is to turn right and head across the outskirts to pick up the road taken by yesterday's Alicante bus. We hope to do this through the hortas but are only occasionally able to do this. I would like to get on the bus at what I call Weetabix (Altabix) but we need to get further out of town. We eventually pick up a nice pecuaria which enables us to do this. We get beyond the houses and after a tea break in a wild garden, pick up our bus back to Alacant.

We pick up some more bread and dates and a pizza at the Argentinean shop who doesn't do the siesta and now I am catching up with the worms as I'm three days in arrears. Maybe maƱana we'll have lunch-out as we shall be in built-up areas much of the time. Now I am going to cook the asparagus and the alcachofas so we can have then with our salman.

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