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Montag, 6. April 2015

Cycling into my old dream: Lanzarote, second day

Yesterday evening, late, at about ten, I felt not so well and the fever climbed on me rapidly. And because this trip wasn't well prepared (almost not at all, to be honest!), as I used to do it over all my years before, now it was the moment to find out what important stuff I've forgot at home. The travel medicine bag!
The only good stuff I have is tea. No sugar. Forgotten at home too.
I told (actually I wrote her!) a friend I feel sick and one second after that I put my socks and I went out in the garden of the apartments resort. This is a complex of rooms actually, a sort of very simple B&B apartments complex (I will write about it separately).
I was lucky ... two ladies just came on the path and entered their room near mine. I said: 
Hello, sorry ...! Hello...! 
And I was heard. They were two British older ladies, one of them strongly smoking and wearing tatoos all over on her arms, rough voice. I told them that I feel sick, that I have no medicine with me and asked them if they maybe would have something for me, because I've got fever too. So, they had something very strong, Codamol 500. I was saved! Bless you, dear ladies :-)
I went to bed after midnight and today I slept longer, till 12! The night wasn't ideal. I maybe slept 3-4 hours. Fortunately was very quiet, the resort has very few guests, maybe 10 people?! I was told it was full occupied the week before (Easter), but now, after the catholic Easter, everybody is gone. Lucky me :-) I do not like these kind of resorts, but it was the best price I could find for my very-very-very low budget (about 30 euros per night, continental breakfast included - not the picture below!).
an interesting "potatoes cake" with some vegetables on the size of a pancake
So, today it had to be a soft and short day.
As the paid breakfast in value of 3 euros can be ordered all the day long, I decided to eat the rest of my dinner (bought in the near situated supermarket) in the morning and to eat my breakfast in the evening, when I will return, as the need to have something warm in the stomach is more important after an entire day of outdoor activity.
I left the room at about 11 a.m. cycling downtown through the inevitable touristic area.
 The plan was to ride to the Castle of San Gabriel along the Atlantic Coast and to see the Fariones Beach where is the start for Ironman, the race I had to cancel this year (23rd of May).
I stopped somewhere before the touristic center. I would have liked to have some sandals and I entered a local small shoes shop. Very high quality leather trekking sandals, but 50 euros was not budgeted. I left the shop and less than 200 m away I entered another shop, looking for some post cards.
I was amazed to see how many Chinese products and Chinese shops, including the original owners and the sales personnel are in the center of Puerto del Carmen. I felt somehow a sort of weird fear, an unpleasant feeling. 
The exactly same model of sandals, same colors, sold only for 14 euros ... but no leathers, of course. Pure plastic. I wonder what chances has the small Spanish shoes shop to survive to these cheap and awful bad quality Chinese products which invaded the local market ..... terrible future .... NO QUALITY, but A LOT OF QUANTITY. Ugly future, man! 
No, I did not bought the Chinese copy-sandals for only 14 euros (!!) and I was sorry not to have the 50 euros for the manufactured leather sandals. I would have liked to give the money to that man for his work.
I wasn't in any rush, so I was late through the narrow and almost crowded streets of Puerto del Carmen observing the traffic, the people, the cyclist, the children, the old people. The life. The taxi drivers. The public buses. The public buses drivers who do not speak English, although a Puerto del Carmen without tourists wouldn't survive at this level. 
To land on the airport of Lanzarote and to wait then 10 minutes until somebody from the information point is appearing and to be amazed that at that touristic information point the man does not speak English ....... is surprising. I just wanted to ask about the public bus station, because nowhere was a sign to be seen ..... is this the Latein-Spanish Spirit of Communication?!
Avenida de Las Playas along Puerto del Carmen Atlantic Coast is long. Maybe three km or longer.
I would not like to be here in high season, in summer, this is for sure.
The beaches are quite different as size and colors. You see golden sand and black sand, grey sand and brown-rot sand. The longest and larger beach is Farriones one, with fine golden-brown sand.
The outline of the island forms many beaches, so it is a plenty of place for everybody, but on the stony one you have to be indeed very careful. Falling on petrified lava means much higher pain and more unpleasant wounds than falling on usual type of stone or rock. 
I have a small wound from the first day and now, as I am writing this (after two full weeks), the wound is unmodified deep and ugly and it seems to still need long time to disappear.
There are many sorts of flowers which are blooming and the various colors adorn the landscape in a very enjoyable natural way.
I reached the end of the touristic avenue, finally. The infrastructure for cycling is really exceptional. For cycling, running and sporty entertainment. A large sort of boulevard along the coast of the ocean widely opened to me .... take a moment to admire the perspective:
 Yes, indeed, a cloudy day, but pleasant temperature and not such a strong wind.
On the left is the dry lava ground crossed by the car road leading to Arrecife, to the airport and to the north of the island. It is no problem to cycle along that road, the asphalt is pretty good quality on the island, almost perfect for the most part of the segments. But my wish for the "resting day" of today was just to slowly ride along directly to the ocean's coast.
Looking to the left:
Looking ahead:
Looking to the right:
After maybe 2 or 3 km you are already on the airport area and the by fine sand covered road goes to the left.
 The winds on this avenue are different and a bit stronger. You changed the direction actually following the outline of the island.
You ride a while along the secured area of the airport and then the perspective becomes wider again. The first white houses on the left make you dream about: "Is it really possible to live here? To wake up in the morning and to have your tea or coffee or book or yoga or what ever directly to the large window of the Planet? I dream about ....."
Here a large and long sand beach again. In background a single tall building, it is a hotel in Arrecife. The only one tall building .... is this not amazing, somewhow? There is The Gran Hotel Arrecife located on the front alongside the harbour. It was built in the '70ies, 1991 was closed due to economical reasons. In 1994 it burned down and 2004, after the restoration, was reopened.
 Houses on the edge of the ocean ....
 This kind of bungalow-house with that stone white bank on the terrace caught my attention by its simplicity ... it was a sort of weird moment that made me stop, turn my head back and take this picture .... I saw me, again - it is happening since a while - in a glass open wide house in a remote area on the edge of a ocean, writing books.
 I reached Arrecife.
Unfortunately  the locals here don't use to indicate anything here .... for instant, this beautiful work ... a female dreaming head, closed eyes, "looking" to the ocean ... what is this? Where am I? No idea ....
I found out about the name and author later in the day visiting the History Museum inside the Castle of San Gabriel. There is a picture of this statue there with all these information.
Then I also found out that Parque Tematico de Arrecife is a place known for the "art under the nacked sky". Some steps away from this statue .... 
 a weird ... something ...... I looked in vain for any kind of information. It is nothing there which could give you an idea about the significance of this shipwreck .....
 Maybe the first boat reaching the island?
No idea ......
 But they put it here and it is for sure an eye catcher .... even a weird one. Not knowing what is it means nothing to me, to be very honest, no emotions. I just can see it was a really big boat.
The earliest records of Arrecife date from the 15th century when it was a small fishing settlement. The name, given then as Arrecifes, refers to the black volcanic reefs behind which boats could hide, protected from sudden pirate attacks.
Towards the end of the sixteenth century the settlement began to grow in response to a need for accommodation and warehousing to support growing trade between the old and new worlds. The first church was constructed at this time, consecrated to the first bishop of Arrecife, San Ginés. Growing prosperity increased the attractiveness of the town as a pirate target: in 1571 a notorious pirate named Dogan plundered and almost completely destroyed the little port town.
„Arrecife, Lanzarote 2011“ von Wiki05 - Eigenes Werk. Lizenziert unter CC0 über Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Arrecife,_Lanzarote_2011.JPG#/media/File:Arrecife,_Lanzarote_2011.JPG
In 1964 Arrecife became the site of Lanzarote's first sea-water desalination plant, which is still operational. Nowadays the population of this city and municipality situated on the centre-east of the island is about 55,7 inhabitants.
I continued my trip along the coast following the way to the left. A large fine sand beach, a paradise for families with small children widely opened before me:
From here I saw the old Castle of San Gabriel. At least I thought it might be that castle. Until the moment I've got closer to it, the castle was for me just a name on a map and I wasn't sure I will reach that place. It was a day without any special plans or goals after all.
The distances are very short on an island, so shortly we already stepped into a piece of history ...

The fortress is located on the small island Los Ingleses de Islote and can be reached only by foot. Admission is free and there are always new exhibitions.
The castle was originally a wooden fortress built in 1573 to defend Arrecife from pirates and attacks from North Africa, unfortunately it was destroyed by fire a few years later by the pirate Morato Arráez.
There are two employees in the castle, both very-very friendly. I wanted to pay a ticket, but the access is free of charge. The man asked me where I am coming from, as they keep an evidence there.
Unfortunately all texts and the movie ruled upstairs on the roof are in Spanish only, so if you don't know any Spanish ....
I left the small island, a beautiful peaceful place for relaxing in a middle of a city actually going further on my direction. It was late and I knew I can't go on for long, but I just was curious.
a quite old picture about the location of the castle - I found it on internet
These small boats are manufactured by a local man and sold in very many variations of colors, themes and sizes.
On the island you can see them in many places serving as flowerpots. Near to my hotel in Puerto del Carmen are plenty of them.

 to be followed - I thought I will write a very short stuff, but it seems to be much longer as expected ....

I let the bike and went out again for a short run to the south. 

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