I wasn’t even out of my pajamas and I was heading out to the campground office. The sun was out, and it looked like a perfect day to wash the sheets. One of the problems, was I had to run to the office to get a token for the machine. By the time I had gone the 50 yards both ways, someone had beaten me to the washer…damn, now I’ve got to wait another hour. As it was, we did get the sheets into, out of, and hung before 10:30. Now we have time to head off to Peñíscola. On the way to Peñíscola we drove right by a farmers market in Vinaros. The booths were filled with all the goodies, and the crowds were big, but the parking space for “Bumble Bee” was missing… we just had to drive on and miss out on all the fun. About 10 miles down the coast is Peñíscola, and high up on the rocky promontory, surrounded by water on 3 sides, and held captive inside of it’s own high walls, sits the Castell del Papa Luna. This castle is in wonderful condition and is great for a days outing. There are lots of areas for those who want to hold a picnic or just roam through a lot of history. The foundations of this castle go back to the Arab times, but the castle as we see it now, was built by the Knights Templar in the 13th century. It was also the residence of Pope Benedict XIII while he was being protected from those who wanted to dispose of him. He was known as the “False Pope” to some in the Catholic Church back then. Another recognition for this castle…it was used in the 1961 movie “El Cid”. As we drove into the beach area of Peñíscola, we were knocked over by the condos that lined the beaches and the surrounding hills…Miami all over again. The beach is long, wide, and filled with great sand. Parallel with the beach is a wide brick and cement boardwalk that is lined on one side with a million little sidewalk restaurants. Now that we are in the winter, the crowds are gone and the sidewalk restaurants are closed. We could just see the mass of people and traffic that summer brings here…incredible.
I think I mentioned our next door neighbors…the ones that have the 1985 yellow VW campervan. This is the young man (he says he’s 80, but no one believes it…) came over when we started putting up our tent…if we needed help, he was there to pitch right in. Anyway, his name is Theunis Snel, and his wife is Nellie. They have been a joy living right next to us the last 9 days. You just can’t believe the smiles that are constantly on their faces. They will be here until March, and then they head back to The Netherlands. We will miss them when we leave in the morning. Tomorrow…Valencia