🎉🎈🥂 Happy 30th Birthday to this beauty who just happens to be a shining star in my life. Thank you for letting me be me, and for always being yourself. Looking forward to our next photoshoot by some vegetation, because apparently, that's my thing 😂 Hope you're having a lovely day #bestie #dirty30 #pasipemuti #always 🥂🎈🎉 @kud_zai_
One of the best things about Tenerife is the fact that there is ALWAYS something to do. You can choose to pay for an activity or find something great to do that’s free of charge depending on your tastes, of course. I’m pretty sure that there is something new to try for most people as well. Apart from the experiences which are unique to Tenerife, based on the areas I’ve driven through, you could probably eat somewhere different for every meal for the best part of a year without doubling back (disclaimer for the fact checkers: that is a truly hyperbolic guestimate, but I’m probably right.)
As agreed, we are using our guests as an excuse to try new things on the island and mi hermano Ru is no exception. Having just been to Aqualand in Faro, Ru was excited to go to another water park. We of course have the water park that is rated number one in the world on Trip Advisor here in Tenerife. A day trip to Siam Park was in order! We decided to try going in on a Friday morning. I was interested to see how much busier it would be compared to our first visit a few weeks ago and I’m sorry to confirm that there was definitely a difference. Summer is on the way and there are definitely more holiday makers on the island. As a result, we actually had to queue for the slides!
I don’t think we waited more than 10 minutes for any one ride, however, the wait was becoming longer as the day progressed and more people came into the park. Ru went and did the Tower of Power and was appropriately impressed by it. The Mekong Rapids is one of the group rides that we did in the morning before heading to the Wave Pool. Once there, we decided to call it a day for Siam Park as the queues put us off. Luckily, as Ru’s visit was for a couple of weeks, we knew we would get the opportunity to come back so took advantage of their cheap return tickets in anticipation.
Despite learning the value of a ticket with the queue jump, I still rate Siam Park and look forward to my next visit.
The Spanish is coming along despacio – un poco, un poco.
Be good or be good at it
My brother has come to visit us for a few weeks in Tenerife for his ‘Summer break’ from pursuing his goals. He’s much younger than I am so I have always felt very protective of him. The last time I saw him was a month before we moved to Tenerife. It’s strange when you have a sibling who grows up away from you because we both grow and become different people when we are apart. It makes the reunions that much more interesting.
I always look forward to seeing Ru because we inevitably catch up about life and family. It’s funny because these conversations always show how much has happened to either one of us as we projecct our recent experiences on everything. The thing about siblings is that they are the only people who understand what it’s like to grow up in your family. They are cut from the same cloth.
Ru’s visit is his first to Spain and to Tenerife. That means all the key tourist stops and a couple of brand new activities coming up in the next few weeks. Along with the joys and frustrations of living with a teenage boy for a few weeks. The dormant mother in me is fully awake when he comes round but I have to let him be himself now.
So a little bit of leisure and adventure with my brother to look forward to. The second wave of house guests has official begun!
Be good or be good at it!
I’ve been having a great time with the job in Santa Cruz! I’ve met a fantastic mix of people including a few I hope will become friends away from work, I’ve learnt the best things to do in Madrid from locals visiting Tenerife, my music playlist for Spanish artists has grown which comes with it’s own problems, and but a pleasant unexpected benefit was seeing more of Santa Cruz and learning about Tenerife.
Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the capital city of the island. It’s in the North-East of the island and takes about 45 minutes to get to from ‘The South’ (Los Cristianos and Las Americas), this while covering 76km of gorgeous views along the TF-1. This was by no means my first time as I’ve been to Santa Cruz before, but it has been such a delight to spend time in the same places and getting to know little pockets of the city.
One of my favourite places to go, though it has gotten quite windy on some occasions, is Playa de Las Terasitas. It is a long beach with golden sands. I’ve mentioned before that Tenerife has rich dark soil and the beach is generally no different, however, sand was imported from the Sahara desert in the 1970s to make the beaches look as they do.
15 minutes away from this beautiful beach will have you back in the tall buildings of Santa Cruz, but there is still so much to see!
I marvelled on my first visit at the vegetation in Santa Cruz. The fact that it rains quite regularly there helps but in the last two weeks, I haven’t caught any rain. It feels completely different to the south because of the tall trees and lush vegetation that you encounter just walking through town centre. There are several parks dotted around the place as well so you’re never far from a green space. I have been told repeatedly that the rain mean that Santa Cruz is typically a couple of degrees cooler than The South as a general rule of thumb. I say be ready for anything.
I happen to know exactly where the football stadium is as well. I’ve heard that Tenerife have a good team that could feature in La Liga.. I’m not much of a football fan but I know enough to know that would be quite exciting for everyone.
Speaking English at work has somewhat stifled the attempts to learn Spanish but the app lives on! Aprendo un poco. It may be a little while now before I come back to Santa Cruz. As life continues, a part-time job is not practical for my needs here so I’m off to do a full time job. Santa Cruz is only an hour away at most so there will certainly be trips in. I’ll be sure to plan the day so we can go past all the places I know and point out Guanches influence in the city.
For now, our next house guest has arrived. Our first family member is coming to stay and I’m excited!
Be good or be good at it
I can’t believe it but I think I need a break! With the excitement of moving to Tenerife still bubbling over, and the fact that every day still brings with it something new to do, I feel like I’ve been very busy over the last few weeks. There is no time to slow down though, as life goes on.
A key step to settling in Spain (for me), is to have a job here. Work ticks so many boxes for me – it’s nice to have added some structure to my day, it’s an easy way to meet new people, I’m getting paid(!) and it means I am paying into the system which makes settling in terms of legal status much easier as well. The changes that are taking place worldwide generally, and Brexit specifically, keep this at the top of my list of things to do as soon as possible. One part of this which has already been sorted out is my Social Security number.
I’m pleased to report that I managed to get this done with the little Spanish I speak – from booking the appointment to getting the number! The key detail for the Social Security number was having a job! I have a part time job at an English school where I help my students practice conversational English and help to increase their confidence in speaking. It’s an evening job so I hold on to the prospect of spending my days and weekends with Nick, exploring more of the island. I’m also looking forward to working in Santa Cruz. It’s an hour commute which is bearable as I will be driving.
So the holiday ends now and real life begins now. Nick has work, and I have my part time gig. I’m now looking for a second job though because as much as I love having free time and am supposed to be a lady of leisure, life does not pay for itself.
Be Good or be good at it!
When we first arrived in Tenerife, Nick and I quickly started making a note of places that we would like to try out. The list includes restaurants, specific food items, activities and places or things of interest. We are trying something new everyday but also want to save some experiences to share with our gifts. I mentioned in a previous post that my dear friend Fungi came to visit and we took advantage of her visit to try a few new things.
Having done the staple activities of going ‘out out’, and the beach, a good meal was in order and for this, we went to a restaurant that we had seen a few times and thought we would like to try.
We had driven past the Churrasqueria Rodeo a few times in the time that we’ve been here and wondered what the place was like so we went there for dinner.
We sat outside in the patio, on a warm Saturday evening and marvelled as different meats were paraded out and offered out to us. There were different cuts of beef, cooked in different ways… chicken, sea food, pork – all prepared in various ways and brought to you for consideration. An all you can eat where they bring the food to you. It was brilliant. The company was fantastic too. At some point, we got talking to the couple sitting behind us and it transpired that they thought that Nick was out dining with his TWO wives. We cleared this up with a very brief summary of who was who. Despite this, a couple at another table piped up saying they would happily join the family as wives number 3 and 4…
Everyone was lovely but I’m still waiting for a Facebook friend request to come through from one of them. We were joking, but, I just got a feeling…
Fungi’s last day here was off to a cloudy start unfortunately. The first for a while. So we took the chance to drive up the volcano to go seek out some sun. There’s an update to the El Teide Page with a new Gallery.
It was a genuinely grim to start but we drove up the mountain and found ourselves driving up through the clouds. It was amazing. We literally found ourselves above the
clouds. The weather above the clouds was perfect, as usual. We used a different route into the national park this time so we saw some red mountains which we hadn’t seen before.
The weekend was finished off with a stop at La Finca! Because apparently, it’s a thing for us! I’m so happ Fungi came to visit us. When we told her we were moving, she took a moment to process, then said, “Great – I’ll be there by the end of May.” And she was! I just love her confidence in herself and her determination to do whatever she sets herself to do. I even get to take part every so often! I had the best time with Fungi here and am looking forward to seeing her again soon.
I’ve always threatened to actually have a go at growing something. Anything. I’ve killed every plant I’ve ever owned, but Tenerife is all about new beginnings. So I decided to start a little herb garden – because I can. A few weekends ago, we did
the very adult thing of going to the Garden Centre on a Saturday morning. I picked out some really basic seeds, got some soil and trays. I also picked up some miniature gardening tools because I like to be extra sometimes.
At time of publishing, my little garden has been growing for 3 weeks! I think we’ve made good progress. It’s not as if I have to do much. I set up my soil, picked a spot that they get some direct sunlight in, I water them daily and on really good days, sing a little song as i do so 🙂
I have some basil, parsley, yellow pepper plants and chives growing. The basil is pretty much ready, and the parsley is a close second.
I was a little bit worried about the peppers, but now that they have started growing, I’m sure there will be a bountiful harvest in the future (she said like she knows what she’s talking about…)
Now that I have this lot going, I’m thinking about expanding and growing some coriander and oregano. Big move – I know.
The only thing about this is I now have to think of things to make to use up my supplies.
Challenge accepted! And, truthfully, suggestions required!!! If you have any ideas for simple herbs and veg to grow on a window sill for a total novice, please let me know!
Be good or be good at it!