Findings: Oliva, Spain
A house is not a home until you have had visitors. It’s not a Party until a wine glass gets broken. The sound of rain is comforting unless you are sitting beneath a blue tarp. Over planning is wasted energy if you aren’t ready for things to defy expectations. Under planning requires the letting go we tell everyone else to practice. Arriving at our destinations is a miracle. GPS can send you down a dirt track towards giant mud puddles. Being followed by a black Mercedes makes the GPS detour seem universal.
Coffee and pastry are better with a view of the Mediterranean. If Veronica makes the pastry the view is just a bonus. Home prices in the Valencia region increased by 4.5% in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the same period last year. Almost a third of the 78,8322 buyers were foreign.
Old men still break into song at Mel de Romer in Oliva. We prefer Gumbo to Paella. Hueva de Sepia won’t be what most people expect it to be. El Pelut will accommodate a large unexpected group with grace, but don’t push your luck. In the right hands cupcakes can become an Art form.
There was a barbershop quartet of snorers in our house, but I only heard the trio. Our light switches are well placed. Taking a bath in a turquoise bathroom is unexpectedly luxurious. A shower in the same bathtub is unexpectedly cramped, and somewhat finicky. Our neighborhood dogs are friendly. Gas for the burner lasted longer than I thought it would.
The children of Oliva will not be going to school during Holy Week. There was a celebration in front of Honey Dukes. The teachers dressed up like clowns. On Sunday a re-enactment of the Passion of Christ will wind past our house and climb up to the Castle. There will be Roman soldiers, whips, fake blood, and a crucifix. Jesus will grab a pint at the local pub before making his climb.
A healthy dessert of pineapple and melon might be served with mounds of whipped cream, and three scoops of ice cream. Eight and ten year olds will be delighted. Fish soup should be viewed before ordering. If it’s off you can tell when you walk through the door. Politics are more bearable when you are 5,000 miles away, and crucial discussions are conducted in another language.
Living is Spain is better than visiting it. Life has a way of putting you exactly where you are supposed to be. A view is not a luxury. A view of water is preferable. Warm sand is good for sore backs. Houses might need names, but for now “Home” will do!