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Day 10 ..... Albacete to Jalance .... 81 km (total 810 km)

Sometimes a picture doesn’t tell the complete story. 

That was the place of my accomodation last night. Looks good eh?

This was reality . A windowless bedroom in the cellar that was acccessed by a small staircase from the kitchen that it transpired was the only way in or out. There was a games room adjoining the bedroom that had windows. They were heavily barrred.

How did he arrive at deciding to stay there? I am glad you asked. The previous night I remembered I hadn’t booked anywhere for accomodation (more on my routine regarding that later) so online I went. Transpires every hotel online in Albacete was booked out (thoughts on that later). So I chanced my arm on Air BnB. At this juncture just let me say I have had nothing but very POSITIVE experiences with accomodation booked through them. Both in Europe and overseas. Up pops this establishment . So I arrive at the house . It’s surrounded by a 12 foot razor wire topped fence and I have to call the owner to be let in. Greeting me in the driveway are two German Shepherd dogs about the size of a small horse straining on their chains undoubtedly in the the hope of taking a bite out of my lillywhite legs. The owner beckons me to leave my bike on the balcony. “ You no need lock bike” he says. “Why aren’t I surprised “ I think in silence to myself. The entire accommodation experience was one to remember. 

There was a highlight however. The following morning I met a wonderful couple from the Basque Country who were making their way home from vacationing in Almeria with their two children . People with beautiful souls who you wish you could spend more time with. They had occupied the other room in the cellar

He did have a map on the wall he wanted me to adorn with a pin denoting where I was from. I took the liberty of both PNG and Sydney . He proudly announced that since last June he had over 50 pins placed on the map. I am betting not too many of them will be return visits .

It’s always a good sign when the wind turbines are facing the direction from whence you have come. =tailwind!

Like the road into Albacete yesterday the road out of it this morning was long and flat. That record that was set yesterday at 19.6 km ? We got very very close today. 19.1. Km without having to turn the handlebars. With a tailwind too it meant I did 27 km in the first hour . 

Pretty soon I passed over the regional border from Albacete and into Valencia . The terrain suddenly became undulating and I passed along some of the best riding roads of the trip thus far. Helped somewhat by a complete absence of cars and a stunning spring morning. 

Before passing into the Valencia region I came across these two. I am guessing they’ve being running on that spot since 1992 when I also guess the Olympic torch passed this way.  Carcelén was the nearest town. 

My destination today was Jalance. A small town bordering on a national park. That canyon like vista behind me? I will be dropping down into that tomorrow morning before climbing out of it again and making my assault on Valencia.

Jalance , my overnight stop, was an unexpected urban delight . Without shadow the prettiest town I have passed through and possibly stayed in so far. That includes Granada. The climb out of here tomorrow might change my perspective. In the interim feast your eyes on this smirgasboard of Jalance postcard potentials.

Jalence I 

Jalence II 

Jalence III 

Jalance IV 

Jalance V

Jalance VI

Jalance VII

Jalance VIII

Jalance IX 

Jalance X

Jalance XI... he sits with his dog for companionship in the warmth of the late Spring day sun pondering the ponderings.

And finally ... Jalance XII

After my stroll around town and up the hill I stop on the Main Street to quench my thirst. In the bar are 5 tables. With football on the background being ignored each table plays hosts to what looks like the Jalance Valley lWomen’s Card Playing League . Not a male to be sighted. 

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