Not quite sure how another month has almost ended but here we are at the end of October picking olives again. We’ve just stripped the two trees and this year we have picked almost 70 kilos so that’s half as much again from last year. The trees have become very overgrown and out of shape so this time they will be severely pruned back into a sensible size and shape. We were reluctant to do this last year as we didn’t really know what we were doing. (We still don’t but have a bit more of an idea so needs must). They only fruit on old wood so next year we may have fewer fruits. This afternoon we are heading to the co-operative with them to exchange for olive oil. I have kept some to cure as last year’s were very successful.

Poco continues to fit into our lifestyle, he may be little but he is fearless and full of character. He still hasn’t been off lead outside the garden as he is so interested in everyone and everything when we go out, we are not quite sure his bond with us is strong enough to stop him wandering off. One day soon when we have a beach to ourselves we will let him run free.

He is a big hit with Ditto who he torments relentlessly. Ditto is so patient with him and rarely reacts even when Poco is hanging off his neck. We do intervene to stop things going too far, of course.

We recently bought a mosaic made by a local artist, we noticed it on a local group and couldn’t resist as it looked so much like Belle and Ditto. We tried to get them to pose on the bed next to it and of course, littl’un had to muscle in! It’s now up on the wall opposite our front door where it catches the light. I have included a link to Dan’s website below.

Mosaic Glass Art Dan Rust
In its final position opposite the front door so it catches the light.
My boys!

The weather is much more pleasant now, I’m even beginning to get a bit of a tan…… we avoided being out in the sun with any skin exposed during June, July, August and September!

We have just had a lovely few days with our friend Philippa who came to stay last week. Philippa was actually browner than us when she arrived and she lives in Cumbria!!

She fell in love with the house and garden and Poco! We had a mixture of days out and time at home and as usual when you have visitors who you have been looking forward to, the time went very quickly. We got to see some different places and some more of Cartagena and we had our first tapas lunch which was really good.

Our next visitor arrives on 3rd November for 5 nights and we are also having a lunch visit a week or so later from a former colleague and her husband who have at last been able to come out to their apartment on the La Manga strip after two years. Hopefully we will also see some friends we met a couple of years ago in Portugal, who are heading south for the winter in their motorhome with their whippet.

So from a very lean time while we have been shielding for so long it is certainly feeling much more enjoyable to be seeing more folk.

Nigel Mansplaining Roman ruins to Philippa
When in Spain, the hammock is a must but no show without Poco!

Now that it’s so much cooler we can get out in the garden again and spend longer tidying, pruning and repotting.

The oranges are beginning to turn, our first windfall was juiced this morning
New acquisition, a stephanotis planted in place of an ugly wizened old geranium.
A strong wind early in the month has ripped the binding tape off our shade sail
and I have no sewing machine to fix it!
Front porch where we usually eat breakfast
Yucca flower spikes, all past their best now but stunning in September and early October.
We missed this nest until the falling leaves exposed it but wondered where the fledging blackcaps had come from in the spring
Plumbago has been glorious
Nigel’s occasional Sunday morning treat!
Much more usual, toast and coffee.
Aloe Vera’s turn for thinning out
So I’ve made some more gel for insect bites as my two lots of guests so far found it very soothing and I’ve run out of the commercial stuff I brought with me. Fiddly, slippery and messy but worth it. (I hope)
Off to the ecoparque again and same again tomorrow with more.
Ditto had to oversee the Aloe pruning from on high. He jumped up into the old well with consummate ease, albeit over a metre in height, glad he didn’t do this before we filled it!

And last but by no means least, we are very pleased to announce that we have at last been accepted as Spanish residents. We haven’t got the cards to prove this yet, we are still waiting for an appointment for this next stage in the process. We are also still awaiting our Spanish driving licences too and were relieved to hear yesterday there has been another extension until the end of the year, allowing longer for this. We applied for them last December!!!

Arriving early for yet another Cartagena Town Hall appointment,
we were forced to have an espresso while we waited!

No doubt there will be more gallivanting albeit to a lesser degree when our next visitor arrives in a week, watch this space, next month for some more photos of days out, hopefully to new places and a tidier garden!!!

Los Albañiles at night

Hasta Luego, todos!