August 2008 Fiesta in Pinos del Valle

This years fiesta kicks off on Friday 14th August and will carry on right through to Sunday 17th August. There will be all sorts of activities happening during the 4 days and everyone is welcome to join in, so if you happen to be visiting the area that weekend come up to the village and check out what’s happening. Most events start in the evening from 8pm onwards and a huge firework display is planned for the Saturday evening, 16th, at 10.30pm (weather permitting). There are processions through the village between the two churches and bands playing music every evening at the top of the village at Juncal from 11.30/Midnight onwards with food and drink available to keep you going through the night.
The fiesta is very popular and people come to the village from far and wide and it’s definitely a lively weekend with lots of rockets going off and lively music (not for those wanting a peaceful weekend that’s for sure).

For those who live in the village the Ayuntamiento are now taking donations to help towards the cost of the fiesta and in return you will receive a programme booklet and a free goodie – the cost of donation is 60 euros.

If you manage to come along we hope you enjoy the fiesta.

Hasta luego

Mel & Phil

Orange Festival in Melegis

For those who are interested and may be in the Lecrin area this weekend (Saturday 15 March) there is the annual Naranja (orange) festival being held in Melegis.  There will be all sorts of locally produced orange products on sale and free fresh orange juice available (so I’m led to believe).  So if you have some spare time get yourself down to Melegis.

The Rain In Spain!

Friday 21st September 2007 turned out to be a very memorable day for everyone here in the Granada Region!!

We started the day with a thunder storm at 6am which lasted for a couple of hours and then cleared – we headed off inland to do our satellite work and all went well – the weather cleared there and we were able to do the job. However on the way back it started raining again and by the time we reached Granada it was pouring down – we got onto the highway to head home and then it really came down – so bad that the banks at the sides of the road were being washed away and the drains couldn’t cope – parts of the road were waterlogged and we had to drive very carefully. We pulled off the highway and headed down to the reservoir to carry on up to Pinos and there were floods everywhere – there was water gushing across the road as we drove up and the banks were being washed down with it and stones and boulders too. We managed to get home in one piece but the whole village was a mess – mud, stones, debris every where. We entered our house to find the ground floor covered in water (luckily it didn’t get into the lounge) and water on the landing. It was pouring in from the light well, coming down the chimney in the back room and the internal patio was flooded too (and that’s partly covered by a roof!). The rain had forced it’s way into the new bit too and had come down some of the walls from the terrace. When we went up to the terrace we saw why – there were massive hailstones and ALL my plants were destroyed – looks like a strimmer had been at them. The leaves were blocking the drainage and water had backed up everywhere. We spent a good couple of hours mopping up and thank goodness for the tiled floors. The rain had even forced it’s way into the top covered Azotea with the tin roof so we had a little damp in the bedrooms but thankfully not much. It wasn’t just us affected – the lower barrio in our village came off worse with 2 foot of mud down there and many people had this washed into their homes. The whole valley has been affected and the crops of olive, almonds, grapes, oranges etc have all been damaged and many farmers are having to submit forms now to claim financial support. Padul (one of towns up the road from us) was badly affected when the river there burst it’s banks and a guy from the UK had his brand new 4×4 washed away and written off with the force of the flood water.

Once the rains stopped the big clean up operation began to clear mud from the roads in and around the villages and it’s taken a few weeks to get back to some sort of normality. The coast got the worst of the storm (some even reported it as a mini tornado) and Almunecar was so badly hit that it has officially been declared a disaster zone – cars washed away – bridges damaged and someone was killed when a garage wall fell on them. The EU have put forward 70 million Euros to help with the clear up and rebuilding of the damaged infrastructure to the region. The reports in the press said that approximately 300 litres of rain fell in just a few short hours. Many say it was the worst rain they have experienced in many years (one local said she was a little girl the last time she remembers that sort of rain and she is now well into retirement). If you click on the Olive Press link on the right of the page they should have more about the storms.
We have now resealed the old light well and painted waterproof paint on the old terrace area which let a lot of water in. Under normal circumstances I think we’d have been OK but the rain & hail came down with such force that it devastated everything. Thankfully peace and calm has returned now and for the last few weeks the sun has been out and everything has dried out. At least we’ve been able to carry on with the building work inside the house.

Adios Mel & Phil

New Flights from East Midlands to Granada!

Just to let you all know that Ryanair will commence flights from East Midlands Airport to Granada from 20th February 2007!! Brilliant news for all of you who are thinking of visiting us for a break away from the hustle & bustle of the UK and fancy catching a bit of sunshine and soaking up the Spanish way of life. Or if you’re feeling energetic you can give us a hand with some of the building work!!!!

Our Trip to Sevilla & Osuna

Plaza S. Andres - outside our HotelView into the gardens of the Casa de PilatosInside the Real AlcazarCalle JuderiaCollegiate Church OsunaThe happy couple on the steps to to the church in Osuna

We had a lovely trip to Sevilla for my birthday. I flew out on the afternoon of 17th May into Malaga where Phil was waiting for me. We drove back to the house and we had a nice quite evening together before heading off around midday on 18th to Sevilla. The weather was a big shock compared to what we were experiencing in the UK. Arriving from mediocre temperatures I was greeted by temperatures in the mid 30’s!! So out came all the lightweight summer stuff and on went the suntan lotion!!

Sevilla is gorgeous with some wonderful architecture and beautiful historic buildings to explore. We spent the whole of Friday exploring the city, visiting the Casa de Pilatos (Palacio de San Andres), Real Alcazar, and the Museo Taurino. In between our visits we stopped off for refreshments in a few of the local bars and soaked up the relaxed atmosphere of Sevilla.

We stayed in a nice hotel conveniently located in the old quarter with a lovely cafe and plaza outside it’s front door. It was very convenient for our evening exploration of the many tapas bars and restaurants and there is such a relaxed and friendly atsmosphere when you are out at night, and you can happily stroll the streets without having to worry . A far cry from the drunken, violent atmosphere of UK towns and cities! We can honestly say Sevilla is a city we would be more than happy to return to and explore in greater depth. Only having 2 nights there and one full day to explore gave us a taste of Sevilla but to do it justice we feel you need to stay at least 2 or 3 days.

On our way home on the Saturday afternoon we stopped off at a lovely town called Osuna which is built on a hill in the heart of the Andalucian countryside. It has a beautiful monumental centre, inherited from it’s former status as a ducal seat. According to the guide book the dukedom was created in 1562 and the House of Osuna was to become one of the most powerful on the Iberian Peninsula. The prosperity that Osuna enjoyed in subsequent centuries is reflected in the fine examples of civil and religious architecture embellishing the town. We had a good wander around the town and saw a bride & groom having their photo taken on the steps leading up to the Colegiata – an imposing 16C Renaissance style collegiate church which stands impressively above the town. What a backdrop for your wedding photos! After sampling some liquid refreshment and tapas in a couple of the bars we headed on back home for the rest of my stay with Phil before flying back to the UK on the Monday evening.