Perhaps it was the endless news of the crisis and the downturn n the worlds financial affairs but everyone seemed to be a bit lum. Now that spring is here it indicates a time of new life and new beginnings. The earth begins to burst forth with all sorts of growth and the trees and flowers all burst into new life.
Hopefully, businesses will become more optimistic and tart up their plans for the forthcoming season in the hope that the tourists will return once again to Andalucía visiting and vacationing in the spectacular 300 kilometres of coastline we know as the Costa del Sol stretching from Gibraltar in the west to La Herradura in the east.
One of the best times to visit is in the spring, which I think is the most beautiful time of year in Andalucía. The season tends to begin early, in February or March. Plants begin blossoming all over the place with stalks of alfalfa covering the rolling new green meadows, wild purple irises dot the pastures, and the air is sweet with the aroma of orange blossoms.
Fascinating to watch are the Storks landing on the roofs and structures as they emigrate from Africa, pink flamingos dip their long legs in the reservoirs and wild partridge share the fields with sheep, goats and horses.
It is time also for us to start thinking about eating outside and enjoying the warm summer evenings with friends al fresco. Getting the barbecue ready and sprucing up the garden or patio. Check our menu page for a great barbecue idea from Chef Matthew.
Here in Andalucía we are lucky to enjoy the warm days in spring with more than comfortable temperatures. It is a great time to enjoy long walks on the beach or for those of a more sporty nature then the plethora of golf courses can offer not just exercise but a thoroughly entertaining time. I have checked out some of the prices and found that some courses are offering an amazing 50% to 70% discount on green fees including a buggy, so do shop around.
There is so much to do as well, and if you want to travel around the Country then why not celebrate the Holy Year with pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago trail and survive the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, witness the fantastic flamenco dancers of Córdoba or sample the delicious gourmet tapas of San Sebastian.
Living in Spain we should also explore the interestingly complex stories of the Spanish people. Learning about the differences in each province from the ideas of the independent Basques to the rugged area of Galicia if only to see Spaniards play the bagpipes and dance the Flamenco with a decidedly River-dance theme.
Let us not forget also that here on the Costa del Sol we have the advantage of an easy journey to Gibraltar with all the shops at special prices and a day of sightseeing pleasure whether it is on the island or a trip to see the dolphins. There is also the chance of a boat trip to Morocco and a day out to the Tangier market.
We all have a different image of Spain no doubt and for me it is the beauty and the mystique of the white hilltop villages. People with their whole life stories written of their faces sitting on the freshly cleaned steps or in the shade of an orange tree. The pride they have in their own space is fierce. The different coloured pots filled with flowers of all colours acting in complete contrast to the white houses and the balconies of the Moorish architecture. Such an inimitable pleasure to wander around these Towns and Villages perhaps savouring a beer and tapas in a local bar and just watching the world slowly go by.
I know it has been a difficult time and that we all have things to do but I hope that this little article has reminded at least some of us that we are lucky in all sorts of areas and no matter what our problems we can all enjoy at least some of the wonderful days of spring.