I haven't had any early Sunday service starts since I was here this month last year. It was pleasant nevertheless to climb into the car in the cool bright morning, to leave for Almuñécar at a quarter to nine. Outside the urbanización, the Sunday flea market was just getting started. Another car was stopped in front of the closed barrier, unable to get it to raise. It's been erratic lately, I've noticed.
Mild panic set in at the thought of being too late to contact Judith and ask her to pass by and rescue, or turning up far too late to be of any use. My wireless key didn't work either, so I got out of the car, went up and touched the barrier tentatively, without applying any force. Immediately it started to lift. The two of us scrambled for our cars, in case it came down again on impulse and escaped the cordon, only to find that at the far end of the entry road a van was parked and blocking escape on to the exit roundabout, already busy with traders and visitors. Before we could start honking our annoyance, the driver appeared and made room for us to leave. On returning, in the afternoon, the barrier was still vertical, evidently in need of servicing.
There were a dozen regulars in the Almuñécar congregation and two dozen later on at the Eucharist in San Miguel, back in Nerja. Visitor numbers fluctuate, but long term regulars tend to flee extreme summer heat, making visits back home. Debate about the EU referendum continues here unabated, with the same mix of views as back in Britain. Some people have lost their right to vote as they are long term residents here without UK domicile, but others have postal votes arriving or already sent. People of all convictions are uncertain about the consequences of the referendum outcome, like it or not, this will affect economic conditions and few will benefit.
After the Nerja service, we had a drink and a chat with a handful of people in a different café just beside , but below the main thoroughfare at the entrance to the barrio. The previous watering hole closed permanently last year. The new place is a little further away and less easy to pop into before heading for home for lunch. I'd only been able to park at the far end of the barrio before church, so we had a five minute walk, before driving against the beach traffic back to the house. Lunch, siesta, idleness, an evening stroll around the perimeter of the urbanización, some photos uploaded, family phone and Skype conversations, and Sunday slipped away less tensely than it began.