November 21, 2007
Postcard From Fuerteventura #2Hello again from the volcanic dustbowl that is Fuerteventura (Pet Detective).
Can you see me? I'm the invisible one next to the pool
My holiday continues (because that's what they do - until they end, of course), and with my remaining days I am more steadfastly than ever refusing to do absolutely anything other than lounge by the pool, read Philip K. Dick and sip exceedingly cold drinks served in expertly frosted glasses.
This is a holiday from my usual sort of holiday. Normally, I like to go see stuff and do stuff and generally broaden my horizons etc etc. So I like mountains and lakes and clifftop walks and woodland trails and all manner of bearded nonsense.
This time I have opted to come to a place that has:
2. Swimming pools
3. Er - that's it
(Oh, and a supermarket where I can saunter down and pick up more ice and mixers, of course. And I'm told you can get food there, too.)
I'm sure it's a very nice place really, but the island of Fuerteventura (Pet Detective) holds no interest for me whatsoever. Geographically, it's Spain - only hotter. Geologically, it's Mars - only nearer. In terms of flora and fauna - well, if you like stray dogs then I guess this is the place to bring your binoculars.
Otherwise, it's just some place where you can get a decent villa with a good-sized pool for well under a grand (flights included), and get to a wi-fi connection every once in a while.
And I have successfully managed to completely switch off. Which is a genuine first for me. I haven't had much at all on my mind about software development or projects or clients or work in general for the last few days. The last thing on my mind when I fall asleep is jumping in the pool as soon as I wake up.
All I worry about is what's for lunch and whether or not I'll be followed by stray dogs on my walk down to the bar where I'll be posting this from. Oh, and there is the small matter of driving back to the airport on Friday. I don't take naturally to strange cars or driving on the wrong side of the road.
So I have reached a state that few people get to see me in: almost completely relaxed. Zen-like, I would go as far as to say.
I could do with another week of this, really. (And than another, to be sure.) But, alas, I have commitments to come home for: tutorials to mess up, people to misinform, clients to piss off. The usual professional obligations.
Hey, I wonder how much one of these villas would cost...
Which brings me to my tip for the day. If you want to chill out and do absolutely nothing except read novels and lie around your own private pool all day, and have absolutely no intenton of exploring, experiencing, learning, or in any other way expanding your mind, then I thoroughly recommend renting a villa in the Canary Islands at this time of year.
It's the quiet season, but the weather is probably the most bearable of any time of the year here. Today the temperature has hovered around 26 degrees centigrade and it's been pretty good all week.
If you live in Europe, it'll take you maybe 3-4 hours to fly here, and you probably won't need to worry about jet lag as we're on UK time (so maybe you're an hour or two either way).
Your best bet is to organise your flights and villa hire directly - don't bother with agents. I found my villa through Owners Direct, and I paid 600 quid for a week for a 3-bed villa with a private pool. Some even have wi-fi, though you might - like I did - choose to resist the temptation.
And if you do decide to come, then maybe we'll run into each other on the way to/from the airport. (I'll be the one bearing down on you on the wrong side of the road, distracted as I try to turn my windscreen wipers off.)
Posted 6 days, 3 hours ago on November 21, 2007