Winter is coming

It’s been a while since I wrote something here – I’ve been in Amsterdam for work. It was great being back “home” in Amsterdam, but as soon as I got back here (with Axel, the dogs & cat) it felt a bit like “home” as well…

While I was away however, everything changed. The days before my return, it rained A LOT; 90 mm the first day, 80 mm the second day. 17 cm in total, that’s a lot of water! As a result, many roads were flooded, rivers were suddenly 10 times bigger than usual, terraces collapsed, and people exchanged pictures and videos for days.

The river Estrets, larger than ever

The river Estrets, larger than ever

Since then, temperatures have dropped dramatically; we didn’t get to more than 12 or 13 degrees (Celsius), and it has been cloudy and wet all week. On the bright side, we did see our first snow on the mountains of Els Sports: yesterday (Thursday) the snowline dropped to 800m.

2014-12-05 18.13.59

There’s a tiny little bit of snow on top of the mountains!

Here in our little house on the mountain, we notice that we’re being a lot less productive than before when the weather was better. There is not much to do on the land – too early for the olive harvest, too wet to work on the renovation of the almacen, and there’s always a reason not to work on the crop garden as well. Also, you might remember that we had an encounter with some hunting dogs gone bad, where I twisted my knee; it now turns out (after a second set of x-rays and a CT-scan were taken) that I actually broke something in my leg, and I’m supposed to rest for 4 more weeks. All this means that we’re being a lot less productive than we’d like to. Fortunately, it has stopped raining now, and we’re expecting dry and sunny weather for the 10 days to come; we hope we’ll be able to harvest the olives in that time, and hopefully fit the old almacen (shed) with a new roof and maybe even a small window. After that, we’re going to celebrate Christmas with our families in Holland and Belgium…

As a final note, I would like to add that Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas, very closely related to Santa Claus I think) is doing his rounds in the Netherlands tonight (December 5th), so I wish everyone over there a happy “pakjesavond” (an evening of getting gifts, reading each other personalised poems, and a lot of merriment and coming together). If all goes well, he’s going to Belgium afterwards where children will find the area around the chimney transformed (and usually sprayed with gifts and candy) in the morning of December 6th – before coming back to Spain where he enjoys the mild weather, beautiful views and nice food for the rest of the year. A bit like us 🙂

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