The end of one journey welcomes another
My time volunteering has come to an end and what a great experience I’ve had. HelpX has opened the door to many different experiences; enabled me to learn new skills; and meet some really nice people. It was worth the membership fee ten times over. I would like to say a big thank you to all my hosts who I spent time with – you were all great in your own little way!
I have some very fond memories from the last 10 months, here’s a few of them,
Fishing in Gondrin on a farmer’s lake catching Carp on an imitation dog biscuit with Keith’s old fishing rod,
Decorating a freshly chopped Christmas tree in the snowy mountains of Saint Lary-Soulan,
Playing the role of Father Christmas for the French and English kids in the chalet – handing out tons of presents,
Skiing the empty pistes on Christmas day,
Riding Pierlo’s horse bareback in the foothills of the Pyrenees mountains,
Living in a straw house – back to basic living,
Strolling along the beautiful town of Collioure at night,
Building and repairing old traditional dry stone walls in the Sierra de Llaberia mountains,
Playing with the baby goat and kittens at the beautiful La Massona,
Spending time with my mum in Barcelona, watching the musical fountains,
Wondering amazed through the small hippy community of Beneficio,
Cycling the steep hills around Sedella, and climbing La Maroma – the peak of the Sierra de Tejeda mountains.
Of course, the best memories cannot be put into words, but they will stay with me forever. I may start volunteering again at some point but at the moment I’m taking a break to spend some time backpacking.
I said goodbye to Mark and Tom after a seven week stay with them, I must comment on how well they host, it was truly a magical experience! I made my way to Tariffa stopping for the weekend in Malaga. My hostel was next to the beach – a forty five minute walk from the bus station I tiresomely found out upon arrival. For the first time here I hired a bike for the day – a brilliant way to explore the city. Most of Malaga is pretty flat so you can reach more of the city without killing yourself on long distance walks. It was great cycling at night through the port, you can really feel the atmosphere as you weave in and out of the busy crowd – it really comes alive when the sun goes down. I spent one of my nights eating barbecue, drinking Mojitos, and dancing away to Salsa with Fleur in a Salsa bar overlooking the Med – fun times indeed.
From Malaga I took the bus down to Tariffa to stay the night before catching the ferry to Tangier in the morning. Kite surfing is what people come to Tariffa for, windy as hell, and full of “cool dudes” dressed in the latest trends. I hung around the port that night high up on a hill watching the ferries come and go, to and from Morocco – “that will be me tomorrow” I thought to myself. It was an early night for me as I was catching the first ferry in the morning – thank god for ear plugs as the hostel was very noisy that night. I bordered the ferry the next morning, my passport was checked and stamped, yet I was too tired and anxious to feel much excitement – I was entering a strange new world.