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Another view of the Abbey.

Coombe Abbey is a hotel between Coventry and Brinklow which has been developed from a historic grade 1 listed building and former country house. The house's original gardens are now a country park. Coombe Abbey was founded as a monastery in the 12th century. Following the dissolution of monasteries in the 16th century it became a royal property. Elizabeth of Bohemia, the daughter of King James 1st, was educated there in the early 17th century and had the Gunpowder Plot succeeded she was to have been abducted from Coombe Abbey and proclaimed as Queen Elizabeth 2nd!! How about that then, as the present Queen may or may not have gotten on the throne and we may never have heard of Camilla!!! For successive generations Coombe Abbey was owned by the Earls of Craven and in 1964 it was bought by Coventry City Council with 150 acres of land and the park was opened to the public in 1966.

Villamartin is the name of both an urbanisation and a golf course in the Costa Blanca. This is the central plaza near the golf course which, I'm reliably told, comes to life in the evenings. The square has a number of palm trees which are home to several African Ring Neck Parrots which have achieved a celebrity status with local tourists who are not used to the sight! However, I saw no parrots but I was only there to take a couple of pics!!!

Another pic from Bruv's solarium. Unfortunately the sunsets were spoiled by the cloud over the mountains and as per sod's law the best one was when we were on the plane leaving!!!

See previous. All were waiting to tee off at the tenth when they called me from my buggy to snap this bird which I'd never seen before! It was untroubled by the golfers and I got to within a few feet of it. It was still digging away when we departed! The Hoopoe is widespread in Europe, Asia and North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar and most European and North Asian birds migrate to the tropics in winter. Apparently the Hoopoe was chosen as Israel's national bird in 2008 following a national poll and was considered sacred in Ancient Egypt. It is also the state-bird of the Punjab province of India and it was seen as a symbol of virtue in Persia! Not a lot of people know that!!! The Hoopoe diet consists mainly of insects and it is a solitary forager which typically feeds on the ground. It probes the ground with the full length of the bill and the muscles of the head allows the bill to be opened when it is inserted in the ground which it was busy doing when I got my pics!!!

One of the many golf courses in the area where I was amused to witness the "Casa Dooz Challenge", bruv Andy & his mate Doug versus bruvs John & Jamie! Doug turned out to be a "dark horse" and as a result carried Andy to victory much to the disgust of J & J!!! Me, I just photographed the wildlife!!!

The morning sky from the solarium of my bruv's retirement home in Spain.

......and apparently "Ribeiro Frio" means "Cold Water"!!!

Photo taken from Bedford RFC situated opposite where my brother John held his 50th birthday do.


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