I'm writing this entry while winging my way back to the US, Atlanta specifically, then on to LAX in Los Angles.
Like all trips, you're so busy with preparations that when you leave you wonder if it's going to be worth the trouble. Gotta get up early, get to the airport, schlep the luggage through the airport and wait at the gate for the departure. The aircraft door closes and you're crammed in the long tube shoulder to shoulder for a very long flight. Then you get there need to rent a car and finally after get to the villa, then it all changes.
You see old friends, meet new friends pull out the maps of the area and start planing a campaign to conquer the mountains and trips to the sea. The vacation has begun.
You're having breakfast by 8AM trying to be on the road by 9 and actually starting out by 9:30. The late start might cause you to bike in the heat of the afternoon or get caught in an afternoon shower, but the days are long, with the sun setting pretty late in the evening. We even settle into the Spanish late dinner time after couple of days. Get in from the ride, take a dip in the pool, shower up and have a drink or two.
There's a plan to eat a the villa on alternate evenings and eat out at surrounding local restaurants on the other evenings. A list is placed on the breakfast table and folks select nights that they are willing to cook and evenings to cleanup. usually 3 or more are cooking or cleaning up. All in all, it works very well with each meal, like each day of riding, getting better and better.
Pretty soon, the days have slipped by, miles under your tires and it's time to re board the aircraft and return to home.
It will be great to get back to the familiar, review the photos and catch up with family and friends, but a small piece of me will be left in Spain, peddling the hills, feeling the sun and rumble of the asphalt beneath my tires. I guess in the day to day bustle of work it's easy to not realize that there is other worlds that need to be explored, sights to view and cultures to be experienced. I don't know where I'll be going next, but I hope that sometime this fall, I start to see a thread of e-mails discussing the possibilities of the next trip.