well, back to the place I haven’t been to since May 2014


this is why I’m selling it, I don’t have the time for it, nor the money to run two houses


we arrived safely, but it turned out that my eleven-year-old car had some electronics issues due to loose wires. luckily my friends recommended a very good mechanic in Montanchez and it was repaired with very little fuss, though a new condenser needed.


the finca is a very special place which I will always hold in my memory


some olive trees had good crops, but they had a heavy prune last year. the soil is pretty poor so these trees will never be bowed down to the ground with fruit like some in the neighbourhood


we are on a west facing slope so evening sunshine is the best


sun down at about 6pm


in the morning the sierra shades us until about 9.30


making plummy blue shadows


there had been rain the previous weekend, so everything very green, but not enough to make the streams run.


mossy boulders all decked out in emerald


though in fact there’s been no more rain for a month now, and the whole time I was there it would get to twenty centigrade and more in the afternoons. bare feet on the porch. I got some vitamin D through my legs and feet.


I came with two things to do. one was to get all the paperwork on the house up to date for the sale. the other was to remove precious personal possessions, like this oil painting (by me ’97-2000)


and this one, just over six feet wide, the other exactly six feet. you may wonder how I would get them in the car, but in fact oil paintings can easily be taken off their stretchers and rolled up, as long as you keep the paint on the outside. they were absolutely filthy with dust, flies, fly spots, and bird droppings. a good thing they were well varnished, so easy to clean with a damp sponge.


kelims also to be folded up. good gypsy belongings, easy to break camp.


so a slightly sad time, and also a bit stressful, finding out what needed to be done and paid for too.


but also magical as always, and wonderful to see my very good friends at Finca Al-Manzil. this is Manfred seconds before he tipped himself over into the pool fully dressed and drowned his phone. he has proved since that the blow-up canoe is perfectly  safe in a larger body of water.