Thursday, 29 March 2012

27th Mar CASTRO MARIM - VALVERDE DEL CAMINO

Of course it didn’t work, the tyre deflated overnight – so now we’ve got to look for a bike shop (again!).

We saw a flock of pigeons, on the way out of Castro Marim, but they weren’t the coloured ones.
We had an uneventful trip to an aire in Spain; Sat Nav was her stupid self again. I had forgotten to switch off the ‘no motorways’ option; a large river separates Portugal and Spain and the only way across (in this area) is the motorway – usually she ignores our wishes but today she took them on board and calculated a route that went through the river!!!! (Brett thinks that she meant for us to catch a ferry, but I’m not so sure).

As we entered Spain we drove through miles and miles of plastic, as far as the eye could see; this was polytunnels and cloches with strawberries growing under them - it was very unsightly!!

The aire is not very nice; it’s in a car park at the side of quite a busy road, but as there’s not many around we haven’t got much choice. We walked into the town, which is quite ugly, looking for a bike shop and found a ‘Chinese Supermarket’. Chinese Supermarkets are a bit like ‘pound shops’; they sell more or less everything very cheaply. Brett was delighted when he found an inner tube the right size for his bike (but the valve was a bigger diameter), a puncture repair kit (similar to the one we already had, but we hoped it was our glue that wasn’t working) and a cover for his ipod (his one broke a while back) and I bought a ‘waiter’s friend’ (bottle opener). Oh dear ...........................
The inner tube won’t fit his wheel; the valve is too wide to go through the hole in the rim (he says if we were at home he could drill the hole out to make it bigger, but he can’t do that here, fortunately it will be fine as a spare for my bike). The puncture repair kit works just as well as our original one i.e. not at all – the patches just don’t stick to the inner tube. And his ipod cover; the holes, for all the various knobs and buttons, are in the correct places except the volume button which he had to cut out with a scalpel. He’s not a ‘happy bunny’! I have yet to try out the bottle opener – I don’t hold out much hope. If we were in the UK we’d have taken it all back but we don’t think we’d get much joy from a Spanish speaking Chinese man! Note: it did only cost 7€ for the lot (but it’s the principal).


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