The Dream Was Never This Hectic!

At the end of July we went to the notario and completed the purchase of our new home. Nothing happens in August, but come the beginning of September everything started up for the "reformas" we wanted and has been going steadily ever since. Of course, as soon as you start to rip things out you find other things that need attention - and then others..... Our builder speaks no English, but I wasn´t put off by that as I reckoned my Spanish was pretty good. That was general, conversational Spanish though, and this job has involved a great deal of "construction" Spanish. Talk of reinforced beams, sewage pipes, syphons, to mention but a few, usually as the result of a call on my mobile just when I´m doing something else, like standing at the checkout in Ikea with four trolleys full of flat pack furniture. I´m sure it´s all good for my learning curve, but right now I´m well out of my comfort zone. The consolation is that everything seems to be coming right at the right time. Our builder is confident that he will have the house ready for us to move into this weekend. We´re packing but, yo tengo mis dudas!
All this is by way of an excuse for taking so long to sit down and update this blog. Thank you Ana for your kind comment which hit my guilty nerve and spurred me into action.


El Pozo del Lizar

Now that the summer heat has passed and we are into temperatures in the mid twenties, serious walking is back on the agenda. This morning I walked up to the reservoir which feeds the irrigation system for the village. It´s more of a tank than a reservoir, smaller than your local swimming pool, but it´s a walk I love to do as part of a daily exercise routine. Apart from being a wonderful viewpoint, it feels like a walk back in time. I start from the apartment we are renting which is on the extreme southern edge of the village, which is the newest part. Climbing steadily to begin with, I then drop down into the centre of the village, which as recently as forty years ago was the edge of the village. Then I leave the 21st century behind and enter Moorish Spain as I climb up the stepped streets of the old village, from the historically more affluent barrio along the main street, up to the "Barribarto" or upper barrio where the poorest houses were (Now they have all been restored by and for expats), emerging eventually above the village and climbing on again until I reach the summit, which used to be graced by a castle. Here in 1567 the Battle of Frigiliana was fought, and after much bloodshed the Morisco inhabitants (Muslims who had been forced to convert to Christianity after the Reconquest) were defeated. Three years later the last Moriscos had been expelled from Spain and 800 years of history was at an end.
From this viewpoint, with the reservoir at my side, I can look over my shoulder to the terraces and villas that lie to the west of the village. Or I can look ahead of me up into the mountains, accessible these days only by half-abandoned footpaths. They are an impressive sight, and the whole area has been declared a natural park. Often, as I sit on a low wall soaking up the view and the stillness, an eagle or two will sail into sight from the high sierra, today only a group of pigeons flying busily around.
And today I also noticed something that I hadn´t registered before; there is still a small section of the castle wall visible above me.