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Dodging the rain: A weekend in Marbella

Even by my standards, booking a last minute trip to Marbella in southern Spain for a mere weekend seemed extravagant. Was it really worth trekking some 1000 miles out of London for just two days? The forecast on my phone had already dispelled any hope of a weekend in the sunshine, and the 2.5 hour flight time is always inevitably extended 3 fold by the time needed for check in and security on one end, passport control and the luggage carousel on the other, as well as multiple additional journeys linking airports both from and to my permanent and holiday accommodation. But unperturbed by these concerns, I set out last Friday lunchtime from Westminster tube station (taking the afternoon off work to give me a head start), quite determined to make a jolly good go of it. Joining my family (who are staying longer) on a trip to our Spanish holiday home, it was my intention to squeeze in the best bits of a Mediterranean holiday into a tight weekend, ready to back at work in London again the following morning. So how did it go?

IMG_3477

Just look at those colours

Just look at those colours

I love these cacti planted by the sea

I love these cacti planted by the sea

The Marina

The Marina

Despite 15 hours total travel and days spent constantly dodging the rain and running into the sunshine, I had a fantastic weekend as these photographs are testament. No sooner had I stepped out of my taxi into the quaint old town streets of Marbella, and eagerly breathed in the fresher air perfumed with the citrus scent of orange blossom and the subtle hint of garlic being cooked up in the old town cottages, I knew that in a matter of hours I had been transported to another world.

Albeit snapped quickly on my iphone, this small selection of photographs is testament to a weekend which had its fill of glorious spring-time sunshine, blues and turqoises the vibrancy of which you’d be hard pushed ever to find on the streets of London, food fit for a king and, inevitably, a fair dose of rain. Being that the trip was only 2 days, I felt constantly energised not to waste a single minute. Consequently from the moment of my arrival at 10pm on Friday night, I made the most of my stay, heading straight away to the nearest tapas bar where with a glass of full-bodied rioja in one hand and a fork-full of manchego, serrano ham and octopus salad in the other, I toasted the weekend of all weekends, the stress and worries and cold of London swept well away, and the summer pleasures which reignite with every new burst of sunshine slowly creeping through my wintered pale skin.

Some food highlights…

Coffee by the Marina

Coffee by the Marina

A Fritura Mixta (squid, prawns and asparagus)

A Fritura Mixta (squid, prawns and asparagus)

Zozoi's indulgent pavlova

Zozoi’s indulgent pavlova

Cappuccino's Tarta de Platano is to die for...

Cappuccino’s Tarta de Platano is to die for…

From Friday night onwards, a shamelessly indulgent trip of restaurant trips, coffees by the marina, lunch by the seaside and dinners in quaint old eateries commenced. Strolling through the old town streets I sucked in every scent and visual delight, poking my head into old churches to see the tronos of the town’s easter parades already set out, ready to be adorned in flowers for the forthcoming Semana Santa parades, pricking up my ears to the rhythmic sounds of flamenco wafting from the doors of a nearby bar, and revelling in the tranquil atmosphere and picturesque pleasures of this awfully quaint old town.

Blue skies (and a little wind)

Blue skies (and a little wind)

Some birds drop in on lunch at Cappuccino Grand Cafe

Some birds drop in on lunch at Cappuccino Grand Cafe

The Paseo after a recent rain shower

The Paseo after a recent rain shower

The Alameda park after a shower

The Alameda park after a shower

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Tronos ready for Semana Santa

Tronos ready for Semana Santa

So was it worth the effort? Of course it was! Leaving at 4.15pm on the Sunday for a 7.45pm flight back to London, I sat on a coach back to Malaga with my stomach doing inevitable cartwheels at the thought of leaving so soon, but equally delighted at how succinctly and fortuitously I was able to dip into this paradisal environment for a small weekend. It wasn’t sunny all the time, and quite often we would eat one course outside in the sun and run inside for dessert as a storm cloud passed over – but this added to the fun and pleasure of this Spring weekend, in which clement temperatures, even under the clouds, made me feel like I was somehow tricking the seasons.

One minute in the sun...

One minute in the sun…

And a few minutes later its drenched in rain

And a few minutes later its drenched in rain

Paradoxical March - sunshine in the rain

Paradoxical March – sunshine in the rain

They say good things come in small packages, and for this weekend in Marbella, the words wrung beautifully true. Back now in London, horrendously cold, I feel not exhausted but enlivened by this mini-holiday in Spain – a hint of the summer, just at the time when we frozen Londoners need it most. Viva España, perfectly accessible for the holidays, and for a mere weekend too.

On the plane ready to go back to London

On the plane ready to go back to London

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8 Comments Post a comment
  1. lucky you !!!

    March 11, 2013
    • I consider myself very lucky! Thanks to my parents for buying me the flights 🙂

      March 11, 2013
      • I forgot to tell you that your pictures were awesome too, I enjoyed them ! Thanks !

        March 11, 2013
  2. maru clavier #

    You did make the best of it!

    March 11, 2013
  3. That is interesting. We often have “sun showers” in Florida, and definitely have fast moving rainstorms, especially in the summer. Glad you snuck away for the weekend. I adore the birds at the cafe photo.

    March 12, 2013
  4. Nice presentation.

    March 12, 2013
  5. petit4chocolatier #

    Beautiful! Everything 🙂

    March 13, 2013
  6. Nice pictures, very inspiring!

    March 14, 2013

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