Tuesday 30th August

Our journey ended with checking out of the Hotel Carel in El Medano before 10:00am and getting the first bus to Los Cristianos, bringing the trip full circle. The bus was late, and then it broke down en route. We stopped in a strange place – a colony of British people by the looks of it. The adverts were all in English, and all the passengers on the bus were speaking English too. Call me crazy, but it was like being in another country.

The sunburn hadn’t gotten much better, so I was making the point of staying out of the sun today. However, Laura was expecting a beach day that had been long waiting. I grabbed a full english breakfast for under three euros (that came with an orange juice that cost over three euros), and then we hit the beach. I went out to splash about with Laura, but she didn’t want to leave the bags on the beach. She went back in another huff, and it was apparent the close-quarters were taking their toll. True, my macbook, DSLR, passport and other things were in the bags, but by the same token, we were on a beach full of tourists. Still, I understood why she was being careful (*cough* machete *cough*), so we’d have to ‘take turns’ being in the sea. I only wanted one swim though.

On my own in the sea, I felt the past catching up, almost like the whole experience had gone full circle. Where it had begun – me, Laura and Yasmin swimming here watching jellyfish float onto the beach on our first weekend back in April, and now myself in the very same spot. The boat Must Cat was floating in the distance – the boat that had been recurring throughout the whole eight weeks here. The water was of the same coast line that I’d learned to scuba dive in. It felt like the official end of the whole business. After I left the water, that would be it for Tenerife. I left in peace.

Laura didn’t want to go in the sea just yet, so I left the beach and found some shade. I people watched for about forty minutes, and then went back to the beach so Laura could have a paddle. She lasted all of three minutes before she was taken out by a huge wave, and came staggering back. I listened to Bob Dylan and Meat Loaf on my iPod whilst I waited for her to dry off.

After the beach, we decided to do one final thing – visit the ‘Royal Fish Spa’ on the seafront. A fish spa is basically a room full of fish tanks – you wipe your feet, place them in, and then a load of fish come and eat all the dead / dry skin off them. It’s a ‘natural pedicure’. It lasted fifteen minutes for seven euros each – and it wasn’t as half as ticklish as I thought it would be. I’m pretty sure I’d seen some of the fish in turtle bay during my diving trips as well. This is what the view looked like from above:

After this little experience, we went straight for the buses – I picked up a watermelon wedge from a market en route. The bus brought another minor conflict – our two hefty bags wouldn’t fit in the underside compartments of the bus. Although I told Laura I was having difficulty getting both bags in, she went on the bus and left me to it. There was little she could have done anyway – I closed the door as much as I could, and got on the bus myself. The door hadn’t closed properly, so every time the bus banked left sharply, we both pressed our noses to the window to see if the bags were flying our beneath us. I thought it was quite funny – Laura less so.

The final return to Arona was a welcome break. Laura found her hubby Chris waiting on the terrance, and they headed off together. Much like El Desierto, I left her to her own devices now. I went out onto ‘the wall’, but it was cluttered with bird guano, so I came back (no tai qi happening on that). I tried to play some games on my mobile (set a new record, wahey!) but then had the idea of visiting Helen’s Bar one last time, to say goodbye to the heart scot.

I was quick to make friends with a guy called Ryan and another dutch guy called David. Ryan was leaving tomorrow same as me – David was here for five months. The three of us went down to Helen’s Bar relatively late, but it was still open and pretty busy. I had a double shot a ‘Liquor 43’ and a Sprite, along with some grapes, and also got a free banana in the deal. I also got to meet Helen’s daughter Chantelle, who every bit as ‘Scot’ as her mom. Helen has high hopes for the bar in the future – I wish her all the best.

The real deal – Liquor 43. Drank ‘on the rocks’, and also with a Sprite.

The night ended with one final thing that I can also cross over my ‘to do’ list – with no bed, I was practically forced to sleep on the terrace (upstairs in the open in the AWF house). I got my sleeping bag out, which kept me warm all night. Mosquitos were local, and I had my net handy. This is the only time in the whole four weeks when I’ve remotely needed it (but it’s still good to have). Funnily enough, this is probably the first night in a long time that the terrace was empty. The fresh air was nice, but generally unless you’re planning a late night party there that breaks noise curfew, there’s not a lot of point in the hassle. The night came in, I set my alarm for the final early rise, and went to bed. And that is pretty much how the story unofficially ends – me in my sleeping bag on the terrace. Still alone, and still smiling 🙂

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