Tag Archives: Spanish countryside

There’s nowhere more beautiful

Is this the most beautiful time of year here? I think so.

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And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
There’s nowhere more beautiful #villaforsale #HiddenAndalucia Find us at Instagram via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-24c

Whose nest is this?

Look what I found when I was deadheading the roses. A tiny nest, delicately balanced in the middle of a large rose bush. Beautifully woven. No owner in residence. No known eggs or chicks. Too small to belong to a blackbird, could it belong to one of the finch family?

5 to remember
mira lo que he encontrado – look what I found
muerto las rosas – deadheading the roses
delicadamente equilibrado – delicately balanced
bellamente tejido – beautifully woven
el propietario – the owner

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Who does this beautifully woven nest belong to? #secretvalley in #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-243

July in the peaceful valley

July is a month of fiestas in Spain. The best known is the bull running of San Fermin in Pamplona, to which many Spaniards travel from across the country. In the houses of the villagers, the televisions will be turned on to show the events. Here in the secret valley, recently designated a zone of special protection due to its outstanding beauty, we have no bulls and life continues peacefully. The most exciting thing to happen recently is the sale of a nearby olive grove, from one villager to another – actually from one cousin to another – and the subsequent digging of new drainage channels in preparation for winter.

5 to remember
las fiestas – the fiestas
los más conocidos – the best known
designada – designated
una zona de protección especial – a zone of special protection
excepcional – outstanding

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Always peaceful: this is what July looks like in the #secretvalley in #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-23K

Dazzling summer sun

When we first moved to Spain, my sensitive Northern eyes needed sunglasses during the hot summer months. Now, my eyes have adjusted and some days I forget to carry my sunglasses with me. Pablo, who has lived here for almost seventy years, has never worn sunglasses and seems bemused by mine. It is rare to see the villagers wearing sunglasses, perhaps it is the sign of a fashion-conscious incomer.

5 to remember
deslumbrante – dazzling
las gafas de sol – the sunglasses
casi setenta años – almost seventy years
un recién llegado – an incomer
consciente de la moda – fashion-conscious

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Dazzling summer sun in the #secretvalley #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-23y

Our summer garden

We don’t have a garden here, not in terms of a ‘front’ garden and ‘back’ garden as we were used to in England. No lawn to mow, no bulbs to plant or perennials to divide in spring. Instead, the valley is our garden. The trees are our framework – walnut, poplar, plum, acacia, almond. So our garden is an easy-care space, with a few nuggets of space which we fill with favourite plants. Lavender, roses, rosemary, oleanders and callistemon all love the heat. And now, everything is approaching its best as spring turns into summer and the thermometer heads for +30°C.

5 to remember
no tenemos – we don’t have
el césped – the lawn
las plantas perennes – the perennial plants
una pepita – a nugget
el termómetro – the thermometer

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Our #garden in summer #secretvalley #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-22e

May in the valley

Early morning: chilly, pull on a pair of jeans and t-shirt.
Mid-morning: jeans off, shorts on.
Early-afternoon: too hot, into pool, out of pool in 30 seconds. The thermometer [which says the water is 23° must be lying].
Late-afternoon: skin pink.
Early evening: forget bug spray, get bitten.
Evening: jeans on.

Blackbirds nesting.
Pair of cuckoos fly in formation, cuckoo-ing to each other.
Three bee-eaters choose a branch of the big walnut tree in front of our terrace as their summer roosting spot.
All the artichokes explode at once, overnight they go from the size of a golf ball to a child’s football.
The wild asparagus has gone to seed.

5 to remember
frío – chilly
un par de vaqueros – a pair of jeans
el termómetro – the thermometer
en linea – in formation
el uno al otro – to each other

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Jeans on, jeans off, shorts on: welcome to May in the #secretvalley #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-1Pl

Harvesting in May

Barley and wheat are major grain crops in Spain and the latter crop is grown all around us here, principally because it is favoured by our warm dry climate. In wetter parts of the country, or where irrigation is used, wheat is crowded out by corn/maize. According to the ‘Grain Market Report’ from the International Grains Council [IGC], 6.2m tonnes of Spain’s 18.5 million tonnes total grain production in 2015 was wheat. Maize accounted for 4m tonnes, barley 6.7m tonnes. If the prayers of farmers in spring are answered, there will be abundant quantities of both rain and sunshine. Around us, some farmers have started the wheat harvest. After showers at the weekend, now we see full sun forecast for every day ahead.

5 to remember
el trigo – the wheat
el campo de trigo – the wheatfield
la cebada – the barley
una tonelada – a tonne
principalmente – principally

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Harvesting in May #secretvalley #Spain via @Spanish_Valley http://wp.me/p3dYp6-21U