Our holiday to Spain feels like a lifetime ago now. You may have already seen my post on how I found the flight there and back. Thankfully I was able to relax for some of the holiday. I decided that I spend my life setting myself goals in an attempt to control my anxiety, however I’m never content with just doing nothing. I therefore decided that this holiday was the perfect opportunity to adjust to doing nothing without being consumed by my anxiety.
As I’ve mentioned before my grandparents have a small villa in Spain and so we stayed there for the duration of our holiday. It’s a home from home for me and so I knew that however anxious I felt I would always feel safe in the house.
I thought I would share some pictures of our holiday and tell you what we got up to. I also thought it would be nice to document it to look back on in the future.
We finally got to the villa at 6pm. The annoying thing about it being a family holiday home is that nothing is switched on when we arrive and so we had to head straight to the villa to turn the fridge on before we could go and get any food shopping. However, once we had turned everything on and changed into some cooler clothes we headed to the shops.
The shops were disappointing in terms of gluten free foods. I have to say I struggled with eating this holiday. As many of you may know due to my anxiety I am unable to eat out at the moment. We had an Indian takeaway one night but other than that I cooked every night. We have no air con in the villa and so cooking in the tiny kitchen was sweltering. We had dinners like jacket potatoes, salads and I even made a casserole one day. I was completely stumped as to what other gluten free vegetarian foods I could cook. Spain didn’t have any halloumi!
I’ll be honest a couple of lunches were made up of a tomato and a whole ball of mozzarella but hey, I was on my holidays.
We have a large inflatable pool for on the roof terrace and so we put that up and filled it with water. We would spend the days on the roof sunbathing, reading, listening to music and going in the pool. Before we went I wasn’t sure whether I would feel like going out of an evening but thankfully I did. We’d often went for a walk at the local Port and even had a coffee there one evening.
Above is a picture of Puerto De Mazarron from one of our evening walks.
How could I not include a picture of my flamingo?
I’ve been wanting one of these for years (literally) but could never justify it. One evening we were heading home from our walk and passed a Lidl so we popped in to see whether they had a wider range of gluten free foods. They did. They also had this beauty. I’ll be honest it wasn’t until we were in the car on the way home that I read the dimensions and realised just how big the inflatable was. It took up almost all of our pool.
My boyfriend injured his back blowing it up but it was totally worth it, right?
The sunsets were absolutely beautiful – they always are in this part of Spain. One evening we just went for a walk around where the villa is. I’m still amazed at how desert-like Spain can look.
We’re really lucky as to where our villa is on the complex as it looks out to hills and mountains. It was quite early in the summer still when we went and we were surprised at how green some areas were still. I’m used to visiting Spain in August where everywhere is scorched from the sun.
Evenings seemed to be my least anxious time. I think the slightly cooler weather helped. For the first few days I found that the heat whilst sunbathing would make me feel a little bit anxious – I think it’s because when I start to panic I become all hot and flustered and so my body was almost mimicking the feeling.
We visited a couple of beaches, having a walk one evening along one of them and spending an hour at the other one afternoon. Both are known as Bolnuevo, however we stopped at different parts of the beach. This picture was taken on our second night there and I was bursting with excitement, my anxiety wasn’t preventing me from going out and so we could at least enjoy a few evenings out. I’d like to say that it’s the angle of the photo and I’m not actually this short, however that would be a lie.
The beach we spent an hour at is our local beach. I know it very well and have been going for many years. The sea is freezing and really stoney so we didn’t actually go in. We did dip our feet in. I’m really not a beachy person, I dislike the sea as the fish scare me and I hate the thought of them touching me. My boyfriend hates the sand and so we didn’t spend very long there.
We continued our walks out of an evening and saw some beautiful views. It was also a nice excuse to take a few pictures for my blog. This was at Isla Plana which both my family and my boyfriend’s family visit, however we didn’t think much of it. We’re wondering whether we perhaps just didn’t find the heart of the village. The sea was beautiful though.
This was our fourth day in Spain and I really badly burnt my knees. We popped out in the evening to Puerto De Mazarron and had a drink there. I was anxious but it was a nice distraction from the pain of my sunburn!
Following my sunburn we decided to spend the following day out of the sun. For years I have visited the Sierra Espunas with my family, however when I’ve been with my boyfriend I’ve avoided taking him here as the drive can be a little dicey. He’s also afraid of heights which isn’t ideal when you’re driving up a mountain. We decided we had a few years experience driving in foreign countries now and so we would have a go. Half way up I had a little panic and we pulled into a picnic spot so I could calm down. This was us once I had calmed down and we were about to get back into the car.
We continued the drive up the sierras and stopped at a little village called Aledo. It was absolutely picturesque and so quiet. The view sprawled out below us making us both a little jelly-legged at how high up we were.
It’s so peaceful and cool up in the mountains. We continued our drive and eventually reached the picnic spot that my family usually stop at. I had packed a very sad looking picnic, however it did the job. We ate our lunch and decided to go for a little walk.
There are a number of abandoned buildings on the sierra espunas, one of which was a short walk from the picnic area. As we walked up to the building we were met by this eery sight. The table and chairs looked to be child-sized and the chairs were pulled out from the table as if the children had only just got up and left the spot.
A little further up is one of the abandoned buildings. I’m not sure which building this is if I’m honest. I know there is an abandoned asylum and a school-like place but I’m not sure if this is one of them. If you’re ever in the area then it is just past the tourist centre.
On our way back from the sierras we stopped at our local golf club for a coffee. It was the first time that holiday that I sat down with a drink and felt relaxed. Perhaps because I had already tackled an anxiety attack that morning.
The last couple of days were somewhat ruined for me as I was so worried about the journey home (you can read about the journey home here). We stayed close to home those days and just went for a couple of walks around the villa.
Of an evening we sat out on the front terrace and played some card games.
The holiday was nice and relaxing. I’m upset that we didn’t get to visit any of the bigger towns, however I just didn’t feel up to it. Looking back now I wish I could go back to anyone of those days and enjoy it all over again.
Where’s your favourite holiday destination?