The Advantage Conference in Madrid provided an excellent opportunity for our bosses, Wayne and Alison Evans and area manager Margaret Moulton, to acquaint themselves with this beautiful region.
The stunning city of Segovia captured their imaginations, the friendly people captured their hearts and the food, by all accounts, made an impact on a whole host of organs. The prized local dish is the suckling piglet and it comes with delicious Mediterranean veg and plenty of ceremony.
As the dish is ritually presented to the biggest and most macho male of the group, Wayne was confronted by a plate of roast buttock, tail and ‘bits-in-between’ of the animal. Margaret said she was looking for Ant and Dec, convinced they were unwitting participants in a bush tucker trial.
Fortunately, Wayne’s former life as an amateur rugby player meant he was well equipped to deal with the delicacy and he got stuck in. “After all,” he mused, “you don’t know what goes into a meat pie, but you still eat them!”
Margaret enjoyed meeting other agents at the conference and was particularly tickled by the anecdotes related by Sue Thompson of Gates Travel in Kendal. Her region in the Lake District is a hotspot for lovers of Beatrix Potter, but it seems that not every tourist is familiar with the children’s author.
A group of Korean tourists were being shown around the Beatrix Potter Museum when one of them piped up: “Winnie the Pooh?”
Quick as a flash, one of the museum staff replied: “The toilets are outside on the left, sir.”
Downcast in Devon
Back in the office, an elderly lady called in and handed us a leaflet she’d picked up at the hotel she’d recently stayed at in Devon.
She said her son had booked the break for her online. A kind gesture, but he’d not done his research. His mother has walking difficulties and prefers to stay in places with good disabled access, so you can imagine her horror when she discovered the hotel was perched atop a steep hill.
“I felt marooned,” she said. “Stuck in the hotel all week, paying £2 for a glass of orange and £3 for a pot of coffee!”
She went on to say that another old lady with similar mobility problems who used two walking sticks had decided to take action against the hotel prices and slid off down the hill on her bottom!
“We’re thinking of suggesting it as a new Olympic event,” she smiled.
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