Karen & Alan Morris at Plaza de Espejo, Los Alcazares.

This week begins quietly & finishes with a grin on my face as my sister comes to visit & Arsenal wins to go back to the top of the Premier League again.

Alan Morris, 2022, week 37.

Monday, 12th September. I slept very badly last night & I don't climb out of my bed till gone past 10 am today. Luckily for me, the office is closed today as the boss has to help his wife clean a garage out. 

I go to the Dialprix supermarket today to get a few bits of shopping. I remember why I don't go there very often when I get there. The prices are higher than any other supermarket in the area & it doesn't have most of the things I want. I get a few bits & then head home along the beach. It seems to be very humid today & because of the heat & humidity & my lack of sleep last night I don't have the energy to do anything today.

I spend all day in front of the television, I try not to fall asleep so that when I do go to bed tonight I will sleep well. I put the air conditioning on to cool the apartment down & stay up till about 11 pm before going to bed.

Tuesday, 13th September. I slept a lot better last night & woke at around 7:45 am. I had a coffee before I walk to the Doctors surgery to get my regular blood test, to test the coagulant properties of my blood. The nurse has a lot of trouble getting a blood sample & has to try several times & in both arms before getting any blood.

Whilst at the surgery I ask if they can give me an up-to-date certificate showing my COVID booster jab but I am told I have to go to the normal medical centre to get it.

When I leave the Doctors I walk along the beach to Chiringuito El Lobo outside my apartment. I have a coffee & tostada for breakfast & read my kindle for a short while. I meet an English couple who stopped for breakfast & ask me for any tips on buying property locally. We chat for a short while & I tell them that it is an offence to ride the bikes they have rented along the promenade & that if they are stopped they could be fined €300. I told them that the police often ignore cyclists but other times they fine everyone on a bike along the promenade. I get annoyed that the cyclist's arent told this when they pay to hire a bike from a rental shop. Remember not knowing the law is not a defence for breaking it, there are signs all along the beach.

After breakfast & after reading my kindle for a while I head off to the medical centre in Los Alcazares to ask about getting a printout of my COVID certificate. They give me a website URL that I have to register on to get it. I try on my mobile phone & receive a text message on my phone with a code to enter to get the certificate. I will try when I get home on my computer so that I can translate anything into English that I don't understand. I leave the medical centre & head to the office.

I sat at the office with Martin & Dave for a couple of hours before leaving to go home. On the way home I decide to go to La Playa bar to see if my friend Cara can translate the message I got from the COVID website. I have a few beers & ask Cara about the code & she confirms it is just a code to enter on the website. I talk to a few people in the bar before heading home, when I get in I watch a bit of television before going to bed.

Wednesday, 14th September. I woke up at about 9 am today, I got a coffee & then went on the Internet to attempt to get my COVID certificate. It was quite easy & I now have an up-to-date COVID certificate printed out & on my phone. If you are a Spanish resident & need to get a copy of your COVID certificate, go to this website ´portalsalud.carm.es´ & you can print it off. You will need to be a legal resident in Spain & have your id number & a mobile phone number to receive a confirmation code.

It is a bit overcast today & a bit cooler. I turned on the water fountain in my balcony garden & spent most of the day reading my kindle on the balcony. Be warned if you see me on my balcony & shout to me you may see more than you expected as now the Spanish neighbours have gone back to their homes throughout Spain, I can sit out in just my boxer shorts. I read until after it has gone dark & the lights have come on, on my fountain, going back indoors at about 10 pm.

I did not get to sleep until around 5 am, I just couldn't get comfortable & even with the air-con running I felt too hot.

Thursday, 15th September. I woke at around 9:45 am when some idiot trying to get access to an apartment in the block, rang every doorbell. If you are using a video entry system, please be aware that ringing a second doorbell stops the previous person from being able to open the door for you. Ring one door at a time & give people time to open the door. I saw the worker leave carrying all his tools away, he was unable to get in because he rang all the bells & stopped people from being able to open the door. Better still only ring the door of the person you want to see. Yes, I know Im grumpy this morning, it's because I didn't sleep well & had to try to open the main door to an idiot that wasn't even coming to see me.

I work on my website until around 3 pm, today I added maps & descriptions to the photos for day 10 of my holiday in China. I went to get some milk at the Economy Cash supermarket but whilst there I fell prey to a shopping trolley dumper. What is a shopping trolley dumper I hear you ask? I went into the store for my milk but when I got home I discovered that my shopping bag had my milk & 4 chocolate doughnuts, 2 chocolate pastries, 4 croissants, a murciano pie & some ice cream in it. I will own up to the milk but all the other items were put in my shopping trolley without my knowledge by a trolley dumper, someone who puts goodies in other people's shopping. Oh well, I guess I will have to eat them now.

This evening I watched television, I watched the West Ham game because the Arsenal v PSV Eindhoven football match had been cancelled. West Ham were not convincing though they did win 2-3.

Friday, 16th September. I woke up feeling better after a good night's sleep, I had a coffee & then put on my snorkel & mask to go swimming in the Mar Menor. If I wear a mask I can see any Jellyfish coming & avoid them. Now the Spanish crowds have gone home it is a lot quieter & my swim was very enjoyable, I managed to swim out to the rocks & back 3 times.

After my swim, I go back to my apartment, have a shower, get a coffee & go back to adding more maps & descriptions to photos on my website. It is a lot of work but I have noticed that my website is now beginning to show up in Google searches, so the work is worth it. After lunch of cheese & ham croissants, I carry on working on the images on my website.

This evening I get fed up not going out so I jump on the tourist train & go up to Rio Nalon for a drink. I go into Rocco´s & I am soon talking to an Irishman & we are soon putting right all the world's wrongs. A little later I am joined by an old friend, Jim, who I have not seen for years. We have a pint in Roccos before heading down to Perlitas where we have a beer, Jim heads off & I join my friends David & Paul who with a few others are on an unofficial stag night for David. After finishing our beer we head back to Roccos, sit outside & have another beer. I leave the group at Rocco's & walk back down the street to catch the last train home at 11:15 pm. I had a good night out & it was great to sit & chat with some of my friends again.


Saturday, 17th September. I get up around 8 am today. I am all excited as my sister, Karen & her other half, Brett are arriving today. They have rented an apartment in the same block as mine & the owner is dropping the key off to me at 10:30 am.

At 10:30 the key is dropped off & around lunchtime Karen & Brett arrived. I show them around their apartment before we go back to mine for a coffee. After we have caught up & had a hug we go outside to the Chiringguito El Lobo outside the apartments. We have some lunch & a drink before Karen & Brett head off to the local shop for some groceries & I head back to my apartment to watch some football & have a siesta.

At 6:30 pm I meet Karen & Brett & we walk to the Massala Cottage for a meal. It was still very hot & I was puffing like a steam train by the time we get there. At least when we get inside they switch the air conditioning on & I get my breath back before we all order our meal. I was supposed to come here for a night out a few weeks ago but couldn't make it, I had spent time studying the menu at home & picked out something new to try then. As I hadn't gone & hadn't tried it, I ordered it this time. I had the Masala Cottage Special with vegetable rice & Punjabi Raita, it was very nice.

When we all finished our meal we walked to Rio Nalon & went to Zarcos for a cocktail, Pina Coladas all round, before getting the tourist train back home again. When I got in I watched Match of The Day on television before going to bed at 1 am, Sunday morning.

Sunday 18th September. I woke around 7:30 am this morning. I was going to go swimming in the Mar Menor & feed bread & croissants to the fish but the wind was quite strong & was blowing up waves. It wasn't good swimming conditions & you couldn't have seen the fish swimming around you so I messaged Brett that we should postpone our swim till the wind died down a bit.

I then got a coffee & sat at my computer to work on my website. This afternoon I cook myself a pizza & settle down to watch the Brentford v Arsenal football match on the television. Arsenal played brilliantly & won 0-3, at the end of the game they even bring on a substitute who made history by being the youngest ever player in the Premier League. He only played for the last few minutes but he was only 15 years & 180 days old. The Arsenal fans were singing to him ´You're going back to school in the morning´. 

I enjoyed the Arsenal game so much that I waited till MOTD came on again at midnight & watched the game again before going to bed.