An Ex-pat Monthly Experience of Moving to Gandia, Spain - Part 15

24th May 2023
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The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain!

The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain! .......  No, it doesn’t. Right now, it’s dumping everything in the Gandia region and according to the weather forecast on my mobile ‘phone, it’s going to be continuing to do so for the next two weeks! In fact right now on the hill behind Real de Gandia, the downpour is reminiscent of the Gotafria, which is the torrential downpour often experienced in the late autumn, but which didn’t arrive last year. It obviously realised it was asleep at the time and has decided to make up for it now!

In truth, we do need it. If you were paying attention during one of my earlier epistles, you will recall that this area sits on one of Europe’s biggest aquifers, hence it’s year-round greenery when the rest of Spain has changed to various shades of brown. Well, we are told that currently, the level of water in the aquifer is at it’s lowest since records began and farmers are getting all tetchy and unnecessary because they can’t get enough water to their crops. In all seriousness, not a good situation when this area is a huge contributor to the rice industry, which is the centre pin of the local culinary delicacies of course, namely, Paella.

Of course, many other things are affected by the rain. We have just been turned into a building site because we are finally being linked up to potable water on this urbanisation. A crazy tractor driven machine has been cutting a three feet deep trench all the way from the main road, which is some two kilometres away. This has meant that we have been using an escape route ‘cami’ to get on and off the estate because the road has been blocked. Of course, now the rain has arrived, the poor workers can’t do a thing and now orange mud and grit is pouring down the hill and the trench infill has started to subside because it was only loose filled.

Today, the fibre optic guys arrived to connect us to high-speed internet, but hey, guess what? Yep, you are correct. They went away again! Ah the joys of vertical agua!

But it’s not all doom and gloom! No, you do quickly seem to grow a different mindset when you live here. The vast majority of things become very, “se la vie!” Yes, I know that’s French! Feelings of frustration quickly seem to evaporate – and for no apparent reason, other than you just seem to become more accepting of life in general. Very easy to understand when we think that this time last week, we were being introduced by one of our Dutch neighbours to a new venue in Javea, called Nomad. A wonderful terrace three stories up, close to the marina and overlooking the beach and the local coastline. The epitome of the Ibiza chill out lounge, with live soothing music by a guitar duo, superb cocktails of every description, soft shade from the sun and just a wonderful place to spend a couple of hours …….. and ninety-six euros!

Oh, but wait! We then went along to THE beach bar to end all beach bars, set in white adobe walls and entered via a delightful archway, where you are greeted with the question, “Would senor prefer a shaded table or one in the sunshine?” Yes really! A DJ playing live mix chill out stuff, the buzz of international conversation from the selection of tables where the beautiful and the poseurs calculatingly draped themselves. Close personal attention, beautiful views and cleverly presented food and drink quickly racked up a hefty lunch bill, but you know what? It’s not somewhere you go every day unless you arrive in one of the several Bentleys, Ferraris and Porsches parked close by, but for an occasional treat? Wow! Gorgeous, and one that totally suited our deliciously attired ladies, who gave all the other luvvies a run for their money!

Similarly, we have been introduced (by the same couple, funnily enough) to a new eatery in our hometown of Gandia. As is often the case, this little restaurant is tucked away around a corner and would take a little finding if you didn’t know where to look. Called, “Street Food,” it is somewhat bizarre to look at. With a large fish skeleton, similar to the Weird Fish logo on the outside wall and an eight-foot cast of a Tuna on the inside wall, sliced and ready to eat. Wall coverings with a definite Mexican tang and the now normal complete mixture of chairs and tables in varying states of antiquity, the service is friendly and very professional. The chef was a high class go-to (Michelin Star) in Valencia, who wanted to do his own thing and aided by his one assistant, produced the six tapas type dishes which the four of us shared. Without question, the tastiest and most original food my Lady Wife and I have enjoyed in years! Each course arrived just after you finished the previous one. I cannot describe to you the mix of delicate and complex tastes we enjoyed that evening. But as I said earlier, these things make up for a few days rain!

Our Spanish class has finished for the summer break. We are better at speaking and listening and I certainly have a lot more confidence when out and about in shops, garages, stores and suchlike. We have a long way to go but have come across a lovely Spanish lady teacher who lives just twenty minutes away, so we are seriously considering having some more intensive lessons from her during the summer, to push us along the way. It is just such a joy to be able to converse even in basics with the Spanish speakers who surround us. A three-minute chat in a restaurant over and above the actual ordering process is so enjoyable and rewarding.

So, if you are considering moving to join us in this lovely area of Spain, don’t hesitate. Despite the realism of the weather occasionally, we couldn’t be happier with our surroundings, our friends, our home, our pets (both Spanish) and just the general life that we are beginning to really call our own. It all began with an on-line video of the villa we now live in being marketed by Sally in Spain. We have never looked back.

So, until the next episode, hopefully titled, “The Rain Has Stopped,” tarra for now!

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