What a week! It’s amazing how much there is to do when you only have a few days left in a place. We’re sad to be leaving Jerez, but excited about the next adventure: a week off in the Canary Islands.

Monday 11/2: Craig was hoping to launch our two excellent guide books today, but unfortunately they ran into some last-minute snags and it wasn’t possible. We both spent the day working, trying to tie up loose ends.

Tuesday 12/2: Apart from a quick trip to the dentist to have my stitches out, it was another work day.

The orange trees are being stripped bare -- it's time for us to go.
The orange trees are being stripped bare — it’s time for us to go.
Wednesday 13/2: Craig spent most of the day holed up inside, but I headed across town for a final language exchange with Monica. In the afternoon we had our last German class, and Tanya gave us the most awesome gift — a couple of activity books (aimed at kids) to practice our German.

Thursday 14/2: After an English class with Fede, I spent a couple of hours cleaning, while Craig tapped away at his computer. Then we went over to Charo’s for a last lunch at her place — it was delicious, as always. Charo’s friends Emi and Monolo were there, and they’d brought us a gift: a 1.5l bottle of Oloroso wine from their bodega. They suggested we take it back to New Zealand with us, but that’s not possible for two reasons: we travel carry-on size, and we won’t be back home for at least six months — no bottle of wine will last us that long!

In the evening we’d planned a party at Tabanco Plateros, but Tanya met us at our place a little early and helped us with the Oloroso. Then our neighbours Julia and Vicente dropped by to look at our dehumidifier, which they were thinking about buying, and we bullied them into having a drink too.

The party was great, Ana and Diego were there, and so were Lien and Fede. The neighbours dropped by for an hour or so, and Tanya’s host dad Pedro and his friends Amparo and Rafa came as well. We stayed until the bar closed, then six of us headed back to our place to finish the Oloroso. It was a fantastic end to our stay here in Jerez.

Our apartment in Lanzarote.
Our apartment in Lanzarote.
Friday 15/2: Since Fede had offered to take us to the airport, we ended up with a lot more of the day to ourselves than we would have had if we’d caught the train. So we got up a little late and spent the morning alternately cleaning and working. In the afternoon, Craig got a haircut and we had a delicious menu del día lunch at the Garage before heading home for the final clean and pack.

Fede collected us from our place and we picked up Lien from her work, where she was adjusting the awesome belts they’d given us for Christmas. The drive didn’t seem long, and we didn’t have any problems with security at the airport — once again we managed to get on a flight without having our bags checked for size and weight! The flight landed on time and we had a pleasant chat with the taxi driver who took us to our (pretty basic) accommodation. It was still pretty early (10.30ish) so we headed out for a beer before bed.

The port at Playa Blanca.
The port at Playa Blanca.

Saturday 16/2: After a bit of a sleep in, we walked down to the waterfront of the town where we were staying (Puerto del Carmen) to have a coffee and catch the bus to the port. We were unimpressed with the town, which was everything we don’t like about tourism — a strip of bars and shops selling overpriced imported goods.

The bus trip was better, as it took us we got to see a fair bit of the island of Lanzarote — and most of it is lovely. It’s dry and arid but white villages would suddenly appear behind the many dusky hills; it’d be a great place to go cycling.

Our first ferry trip in a while.
Our first ferry trip in a while.
Lunch wasn’t up to much but the ferry crossing (with Naviera Armas) was awesome — I saw flying fish! We were collected from the ferry by Frauke, one of the staff at Azul Fit, where we were going to spend the next week.

When we arrived at the villa, Lisa showed us around and told us what our week was going to be like: lots of yoga and Pilates and delicious food. We’d arrived just in time for the first yoga class, in fact, so we hurried downstairs to the yoga room and met Valentina, who was our teacher for most of the yoga classes. There were only two others in the class with us, since the other people who would be spending the week with us hadn’t arrived, but they were trickling in by the time the class ended.

The main room at Villa Azul.
The main room at Villa Azul.

Dinner was absolutely delicious — the chef has recently published a cookbook of vegetarian and vegan recipes, and we got the full benefit of her knowledge.

Handcraft market in Corralejo.
Handcraft market in Corralejo.
Sunday 17/2: Our week off began in earnest, and set a good rhythm for the rest of our time on the island: a morning class, followed by brunch, then free time until a 4.30 class and then dinner at 6.30.

During the free time, Craig and I took advantage of a free transfer down to the nearby town of Corralejo, where we visited the handcraft market, wandered along the beach, and had a drink in one of the few bars that had locals in it.

Back at the villa, we took advantage of the gorgeous weather by lazing by the pool in the sun — Craig even went for a swim.

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