Two of Johann's new colleagues met us at the airport to take us back to base. We were exhausted but had new energy and excitement taking our first steps in Spain. Until, that is...I learned that only Johann's baggage arrived with us...My, Reese and Rayna's suitcases were all M.I.A!
No worries...we're in Spain...of COURSE they are missing...they'll show up "Manana"...a term we have come to know does NOT mean, "Tomorrow", but "Maybe sometime in the future"...
Thankfully, the bags DID show up the next day...or so.
And we moved into the Navy Lodge - the hotel on the Rota Base. It was just getting dark when we arrived at about 8:45pm to check in. Another of Johann's co-workers who was assigned as our Sponsor (and who had been in contact with us from the notice of orders) was out of the country and left his car for us to use! So we ventured out of the base to check out our new town and get something to eat. It was about 11:30pm by this time and 2:30pm PST - well past our lunch time.
We walked outside the main gate for our first look and went to the first place we saw - a Tapas bar. We felt right at home as there were other children there, having tapas with their parents (at MIDNIGHT)! Johann joked, in the states that we'd all be in jail by CPS, but in Spain, the culture is very family friendly and children go wherever their parents go, even in the middle of the night apparently!
We tried an assortment of tapas which included: (I don't know the actual name of them but they were) boiled potato with a sour cream based sauce - which is a very common and popular tapas..its also very good and can come as fried potatoes too. We had some garlic chicken (small chucks of chicken grilled in garlic and olive oil) - delicious, some kind of tuna/potato saladish thing, something else that was greasy awful...AND...Bulls Testicles...unfortunately for us. And no, it wasn't good. By this time, it was very late so we went back to base and off to bed.
The next day, we left the base to discover Rota in the daylight. We fell in love with it instantly. The beautiful white sand beaches, the marina filled with sailboats, 13th century churches, the smell of fresh fried fish coming out of the little cafes, fresh baked bread and pastries at the panaderias and its very own castle.
That's it... We love Rota!