Preparation and Arrivals



Woke up to a lovely sunny day although it clouded in again by lunchtime.  Still, nice and warm though.  We had breakfast in the apartment of course and then headed off in the car.  Couldn’t help notice that there were lots of people on the beach below the hotel and quite a few in the sea.  This is good news because I have had to bring my shortie wetsuit this time because….. and I know you will sympathise with my problem….. my full length wetsuit has shrunk in the last two years.  Shocking I know….  Luckily I am on a diet so soon it’s shrinkage won’t matter anymore.  However, I was a bit worried that I might be cold diving in the shortie.  The truth of this remains to be seen, but the fact that plenty of people were frolicking in the sea in swimsuits was a hopeful sign.

Our first stop was down to Maltaqua in St Paul’s Bay to pick up our kit for diving tomorrow.  Got 3 cylinders and the weights plus plugs to adapt our regulators to DIN fittings.  We are only going to do one dive in the morning, just to shake out the kit and the cobwebs.  Went to spot a couple of places that might fit the bill.  The first at Qawra Point is good if the wind is due west, but our first dive of choice would be at Popeye’s Village, just north of our hotel.  This site is good unless the wind is due west.  Drove to Qawra Point and checked out the diving parking was still there.  It was.  Then drove up to Popeye’s Village.  Popeye’s Village was developed from the film set built for the Robin Williams’ film, Popeye.  It’s a strange place, oddly attractive, and has some shops and restaurants and a beach club.  For diving though, you can drive to the other side of the narrow cove, park up and walk down a very short way to a large concrete jetty for easy entry and exit.

Parked up and looked over the edge.  The jetty was still there although rather broken in parts.  Must have been a big storm in the last couple of years.  Still good for our purpose though.  Probably we will go there tomorrow.

Came back to the resort and made ourselves lunch.  It’s great to be able to self cater.  We try and do that wherever possible.  Being retired, we don’t look at these frequent foreign trips as “holidays” per se in the same way we did when we were working.  In those days, we spoiled ourselves on holiday, as a treat, eating out most nights.  Nowadays, it’s more like we are living somewhere else for a short time and we, mostly, adopt the same eating/spending habits as we do at home: eat in mostly, eat out occasionally.   This means that when we stay somewhere like this, our expenses are very similar to what they would be if we were at home.  It makes our lifestyle affordable, frankly.  The only place we don’t do this, is when we go to India, because….. well…. eating out there is too cheap to do anything else.

Bob went to the airport to pick up Stuart and Fi for 4pm.  Their flight was on time and they were back by around 530ish.  I couldn’t go because there wasn’t room in the car for 4 of us with luggage and the diving kit.  I cooked dinner for the four of us: meatballs in a spicy tomato sauce with fettuccine (just meatballs for me because of the wetsuit shrinkage issue).  It worked out quite well although I am lacking a few store cupboard ingredients I would use at home.  Still… it was lovely to see them and we had a good catch up.  It was strange in a way as both Stuart and I were teetotallers and Bob and Fi were the ones drinking beer and wine respectively.

This is their first time to Malta other than a visit to Valletta on a cruise so we must try and see some of the island too.  The weather forecast is good for the rest of the coming week.