Off road driving……

I started my yoga teacher training course on Tuesday. There is just me and one other lady (Maria) at the moment so we are starting off the lesson’s at our teacher’s house. On the first day we met Maggie and followed her down to her house as it is ‘off road’. The drive down was interesting as it was a lot like this picture (no kidding) and my knuckles were white by the time we got to her little cottage.

At the end of the first day I drove Maria back up to the main road to meet her husband and arranged to pick her up the following morning.

This I did with no problem and we started along the track to Maggie’s house. This is where it all started to go horribly wrong. Maria and I were chatting – she is from Argentina and although her English is good it is not her first language and so we were both concentrating on the conversation – a bit too much it would seem!! After a while we realised we had overshot Maggie’s turning and now weren’t really sure how far along we had come. I managed to turn around with no problem and we headed back down the track looking for the right turn off. We thought we had found it but this track quickly became bumpier and steeper and we knew we had taken the wrong turning. Trouble was there was no way to turn around and so the only option was to continue to go down.

I was getting worried at this stage as the track was very rocky and very uneven and I wasn’t sure if we would get back up again!! We got to the bottom and I turned around and we started back up the hill. All went well until the first corner which was also the rockiest. The car literally had no traction and we started to slide backwards. I managed to stop but there was no way we were going any further which meant reversing back down to try again. Unfortunately by this stage the two wheels on my side of the car were in a gully and although I could reverse back I couldn’t get them out of the gully. Eventually we were getting closer and closer to a bank of rock on one side. I couldn’t go forward as no traction and I couldn’t go any further back – we were well and truly stuck.

I’m so glad I wasn’t on my own although I am pretty sure Maria wished she wasn’t with me!! We phoned Maggie and I managed – in between bouts of panic that we wouldn’t get the car out – to explain to her what had happened and she set off to find us. We left the car and walked back to the main track where we finally met her. Hugs and a few tears later we made it back down to the car. Maggie immediately knew that this track wasn’t a good one but she had hopes that we could get us out ourselves, until she saw where we were!!

Once she had assessed the situation we headed back to her house to try to find someone who could come and rescue us. My car is big and very heavy so it was going to take some doing. She phoned her ex-husband who lives 5 minutes away and immediately he sorted out a rescue mission. There was a chap at his house digging out his drive which had been impassable for a few days. We could have Raphael and his caterpillar digger once he was finished.

An hour later we were back at the car and Raphael made easy work of pulling me out of the gully. But then he had to pull me back up the hill. We got almost to the corner but then the little caterpillar couldn’t manage any further. So, I had to start my car up and between us – him pulling and me inching forward very gently we finally got back to the top. I was SO relieved. It cost me 10 euros and he got a hug as well as I was just so happy that the car was still in one piece and had suffered no damage.

So, the lesson to be learnt here………don’t drive down an unmarked track in Spain if you don’t know what is around the corner…..but if you do then make sure there is a Raphael on hand to pull you out.