174 – Growing Old in the Pueblo

Officially, I’m not old.  I’m too young to get a pension, and I’m not sixty yet.  My pueblo organises events and trips for the “oldies”, but technically I’m too young.  Technically.  But thanks to last year’s heart attack, I can sneak in.  Continue reading

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171 – Four Breakfasts and a Barbecue

Another month, another “escapada”.  This time to Cádiz, a city I had overlooked for far too long.  Three nights in probably the best-located Airbnb flat anywhere, with a terrace looking directly onto the tower of the impressive cathedral.  It was the flat of Francesca and Carlos – for me the real benefit of the Airbnb system is being able to stay with locals and get their tips about things to see and places to eat.    Continue reading

167 – The Turn of Another Year

My fifth Christmas in Spain.  I thought that must be wrong, but it’s not.  Four and a half years since I bought my house, three and a half years since I retired and moved here full-time.  Such a short time, yet it feels like forever. Continue reading

166 – Catching Up

 

First of all it was remiss of me not to thank you all for the lovely thoughts and messages you sent following my heart attack.  I really did appreciate every one of them – “the kindness of strangers” means a lot.

Since then I’ve been doing a lot of catching up.  Trying to slow down, catching up with old friends, and catching up with long-delayed tasks. Continue reading

164 – No Words

 

Seriously.  There are no words.

When I walked (staggered) into the village health centre on Thursday morning I didn’t need any words.  I stood swaying in the doorway and three waiting patients grabbed me and guided me to a seat, while two doctors and two nurses rushed to my side.  For a smallish village we are lucky to have a 24-hour “Urgencias” onsite and our own ambulance, and it wasn’t long before I was strapped in and the siren sounded and we headed for Málaga. Continue reading

163 – Refreshing

 

And finally the rain came.  Not enough, but it rained.  Across Andalucía farmers breathed a sigh of relief along with the bomberos (firefighters), the dryish leaves on my patio trees 163-wetleaveslifted their faces and cheered up a little, and everyone gratefully flung open all the doors and windows to allow the cool air into the houses.  I pottered outside for half an hour, moving plants to the centre so they would catch more of the precious drops, enjoying standing in the cool, gentle drizzle. It’s refreshing. Continue reading