Saturday, 15 October 2016

Garrucha exploration continued

Awake again at first light, and unable to doze off again, so I got up and took my camera down to the beach to get some photos of the sunrise, as the skies were reasonably clear. This was one that gave me pleasure to look at later.

Apart from uploading photos, the rest of the morning was once more devoted to CBS office affairs and a long phone call to Ashley. After lunch I walked once more to Garrucha and walked on further than the port and the promenade along the Calle Malecon. Most of Garrucha is on an undulating ridge, right above the beach. There are some steep streets ascending, but if you look left or right at any junction, you see how streets ar right angles go up and downhill along the contours as well. 

I found the Parish Church of San Joachin (father of Blessed Mary in Christian tradition), tucked into a rather inconspicuous plaza, a few streets along from the food market, with a statue of Maria Immaculata on a pillar in front of the church, looking out to sea. It looked as if it could do with a coat of paint, in contrast to an unusually modern design of building attached at the rear of the church, with tall bronze doors, decorated with bas relief images of suffering Jesus and Mary, announced itself to the home of a local cofradia. 

From there I walked to the top of the town. Above the uppermost street, the ridge rises sharply to a peak on which sits a monument to the town's industrial past in the form of a tall chimney. As there's nothing to tell you why it's there, and the only sign identifying the place has been smashed, it stands mysteriously in isolation, approached by a spiral ramp, at the end of an approach road flanked by street lamps, some broken. The site breathes an air of neglect, with sunken floodlight housings smashed. It's hard to tell if this is a genuine industrial remnant or a modern homage to past smelters that brought wealth to this small fishing port. Either way it's a cultural project which wasn't followed through with a sustainable budget for maintenance. Not unusual, but nevertheless a pity.

On the way back, I revisited the site of the town's lead ore furnace and walked right around the area this time in the hope of gaining more clues about the industry which once dominated this place. I gained no new insight from this, only a few more photos from different angles. Having walked to the top of the hillside on which the enterprise was located, I continued walking along the contour back to Mojacar, above a full sized golf course, surrounded on all sides by modern luxury hotel and apartment complexes. I spotted just one man on the course driving range, but nobody out of the course itself. But then, at time of year, visitor numbers are drastically diminished. I hope they do better in high season, to justify the phenomenal investment made in transforming this coastal area into a high class holiday resort.

I got back as the sun was setting, and went straight out again down to the beach, intent on taking some photos of the nearly full moon rising over the waters. I had much difficulty in making the necessary camera setting adjustments to enable the Sony HX300 to work at its best. I spent much of the rest of the evening reading the on-line manual and trying to figure out how. My best photos was taken on enhanced auto settings, and I still can figure out how to get what I want, despite an hour or more of playing about with it.

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