|Mountains outside Alicante|
|The Calpe W|
We left Ronda and traveled six hours to the coast. The scenery changed--often times becoming the bland rolling plains similar to central Spain. At the coast, things changed. Jagged, bare mountains rose to the left of us, the Mediterranean rolled out to the right. Calpe. Located on the Costa Blanca is landmarked by the giant Pinon Ifach--a Gibraltareque rock rising from the Mediterranean. Two sandy beach curve away from Ifach's peninsula creating a geographic W. Once explored, Calpe doesn't offer anything too exotic.
We walked the beach. Daily we visited grocery stores--Spain has many on every few blocks as all the refrigerators we'd seen were tiny, apartment sized appliances. Our top floor apartment offered stunning views of the sea and the fishing fleets and the beaches, but we had no TV or radio, no Internet. We had each other and quietness.
As we neared the end of week two, the desire to return home beset us. As Americans--and me--as a DeFord--we were used to going all the time. Used to rushing through lines, grabbing our "sippy" cups of coffee or coke and getting it done.
Throughout Spain, if you took a cup of coffee it was served in a ceramic cup meant to be drunk in the establishment that sold it. If you nursed it for hours, that was okay. You had time. Time was free. Enjoy it.
Somehow I slowed down. I found myself sitting at Spasso's, a seaside cafe, nestled in a leather chair. For a euro, I'd order my coffee (no refills), use their free wifi and enjoy "human" contact, sea breezes and sunshine.
Slowing down, enjoying life, and appreciating my own person circumstances became three Spanish characteristics I don't want to lose.