The Río Verde rises somewhere in the heart of the barren Sierra Alhamilla and winds its convoluted way via Alqueria into the Mediterranean. From its source to the Alquerian border it is a thing of wonder, clear and fresh, with proven therapeutic qualities and by far the finest bottled water available anywhere. After it leaves it has the consistency of old sump oil, the smell of putrefying carcasses and an indescribable colour which contains every offensive hue in the spectrum. Alqueria is very proud of its River. Aquatic animals and the many varieties of fish that live in and around the upper reaches of the Río Verde have the ability to detect the Alquerian border performing u-turns and heading back into the Sierra.
Just why the River changes from an idyllic waterway into the hideous thing that oozes its way through Alqueria is difficult to quantify. It is as if it just gives up when it is within the Village’s boundaries, something many people also do. Certainly the bad drainage has a lot to answer for. Poyato’s Remitroot waste drains into the River and perhaps some chemical reaction occurs with the naturally occurring algae and bacteria. Just what effect the aphrodisiac qualities of the plant have on animal and fish life isn’t however on record.
Mutations of all sorts have been reported by startled onlookers but as the Alquerian Tourist Board point out, ‘one person’s mutated species is another’s form of unique fauna’. Strange creatures abound in the River. The Alqueria Trout has no gills but instead a type of snorkel which protrudes through the disgusting liquid and allows the fish to breath fresh air. It also has rudimentary feet, these are however waning and it is believed that after leaving the water in antiquity it found that the obnoxious Río Verde preferable to life on the streets of Alqueria.
The surface tension of the Río Verde, due to its viscosity supports a surprising array of plant life giving the River the appearance of firm soil which has fooled many and is possibly responsible for the occasional missing person. Many animals such as the Alqueria Newt are able to walk on the surface. A mysterious resident of the River, called ‘Nigel’ has never been seen, just whirl pools, strange currents and large bubbles rising to the surface, possible indicating a digestive problem indicate his presence. Nigel is probably responsible for the remainder of the missing person reports.
The River is indeed unique and worthy of protection so please lobby your MP so the Río Verde can be declared a ‘World Heritage Site’.