the hoofindex - rewind to the previous trip (queens birthday in london) - fast forward to the following trip (valencia)

 

So here we were, at the beginning of our 5 week holiday trip back to New Zealand and back to reality. With the prospect of new home buying, a new job for the Hoof and job search for the Hoof'ess we were looking forward to an action packed 5 weeks. A combination of sun, beach, festivals, cities, sightseeing, All Black's and a visit to the senior hoofs before we set foot back on the green green grass of home.

The list looks pretty impressive... 12 destinations, 10 flights, 4 ferry rides, rental car and one long bus trip... and that's just the planned stuff.

Fortunately we were well organised having crashed at Stacey and Logan's place which meant we were 15 minutes from Heathrow on Saturday morning - and after some frantic Wii competition over breakfast we bid farewell to our hosts and headed off.

We had joked about flying out of Heathrow, and the fact that they lose 50% of passenger luggage...

...but unfortunately the Hoof'ess was at the receiving end of Heathrow's efficient baggage handling service. Here we were in Alicante, and the friendly Spaniard informed the Hoof'ess her bag was still in London and the earliest they'd get it too us was on Monday - two days away. He didn't show much empathy which further irritated the Hoof'ess, but given there was a pile of bags next to the "lost luggage" kiosk I suspect it's a common issue for them. Needless to say the Hoof'ess was not at all happy and got rather lippy with the fella, who then gave her a lovely bag of goodies... as you can see the Hoof'ess was not that impressed by the overnight bag with toiletries, spare XL t-shirt and some washing detergent for her clothes.

Fortunately her bag did arrive eventually, 24 hours later it flew into Spain and after getting lippy (again) on the phone they sent it to her in a taxi, so she got all her stuff back on the Sunday evening.

We'd decided to start our holiday in Alicante in order to chill out for a few days before continuing team Hoof's mission to see everything Europe has to offer. So we started (with the Hoof'ess still in her yesterdays clothes as her pack hadn't arrived yet) by checking out the beach and sitting by the pool at the hotel. Unfortunately we were not in the "sitting by the pool/beach mood"... we were still too amped up to see stuff, so instead decided to head up the hill and check out the Fortress which overlooks Alicante. We chatted to one of the helpful hotel staff who informed us that the lift which tourists usually take was not working so the best way was to take a taxi... taxi we said, hell no we'll walk it... much to the confused amazement of the hotel guy who simply said, it'll be too hot... too hot!

Well we walked it no worries, if perhaps a couple of kg's lighter. And the view was very cool...

As you can see, on the way down we walked along the old walls which stretched from the fort down towards the old town area of Alicante... not too much of the old stuff left however - Alicante was more of an industrial/commercial city servicing the region, rather than a beach resort town like we were expecting.

Next day we headed up on the tram to some beaches north of the main town and found more beachy areas, but none fulfilled our desire to find where Brits go on holiday... we wanted to find the area where you'll be surrounded by Brits on holiday, sitting in an English pub serving Carling and Tetley's, with steak, eggs and chips on the menu.

For the rest of the day we enjoyed a little beach time as the next day we were picking up a rental car to head northwards, still on the hunt for our elusive pray - the Brits on holiday - but our final destination was Valencia to see the town and experience La Tomitina.