Tuesday, May 31, 2011

El Hierro

Originally, the final exam for the Starlight course was going to be the 26th of May, and that was when the project had to be handed in. So I booked flights to visit my friend in El Hierro for the long weekend afterwards, on the basis that I'd have earned a break by then.

Then the course teachers found that it suited them better to move the exam to the 2nd of June, and decided we could hand the project in then, too. Of course nobody objected.

Well, the flight was booked anyway, and I knew that my friend would understand if I spent some of the time putting finishing touches to my project, and/or studying for the exam.

And then my friend found that she had to move house while I was there.

So the relaxing long weekend largely consisted of lugging things out of one house into another, and cleaning the old house. Quite a lot of the rest was spent working on my project. My digestion started acting up again.

And you know what? I still had fun.

Mostly it was being with my friend. In spite of high stress levels on both sides, we had some good laughs. And I love El Hierro. She's moved to a particularly lovely part, near the Parador.

I woke very early one morning and went for a walk and saw the crescent moon rising near Venus and (I think) Mars.

We went down to the Parador for delicious (if pricey) sandwiches and to use the Wi-Fi, where we met an albino pigeon who obligingly posed on the roof for quite a while.

And once we were in the new house, we also heard weird noises in the night, which sounded something between a furious tom cat and a duck, like this . I wasn't exactly scared, but I was rather glad that I was inside the house and the whatever-it-was outside. I think I'd have felt decidedly uncomfortable about it if I'd been camping.

I can see why people have mistaken them for witches or even the devil, but actually it's a nocturnal seagull called Cory's Shearwater, or in Spanish a Pardela Cenicienta.

And with all that, I still made considerable progress on my project.

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