Sunday, 28 October 2018

Battle of Arroyomolions re-enactment on October 28

A different format this year, somewhat reduced with no horse activity unfortunately but entertaining never the less. A perfect autumn day with blue skies above Arroyomolinos unlike the original battle of 1811 when there was torrential rain and thunder storms.
 See here for the 200 year anniversary in 2011
And here for some spectacular horse action

Thursday, 27 September 2018

El Hierro: Adios.....

Last day of El Hierro holiday. A great ride on the old road across the island, winding up from the coast through thick laurel and fern woods, splendid pine forests and down to El Pinhal and La Restinga on the other side of the island on the so call Mar Calma, the calm sea. Before lunch we stopped at Taconal a rocky cove with really safe swimming in calm waters. Water temperature was wonderful, deep clefts in the rocks became delightful whirlpools as the tide came in and out.
Back to Sabinosa for the last time. Back to Extremadura tomorrow with some great memories of this small but diverse volcanic island off the coast of Africa in the deep blue waters of the ocean.

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

El Hierro: Charco de los Sargos and Punta Grande

A trek to Charco de los Sargos along the coast from Las Puntas, a rocky cove with small pool, a tiny haven along this wild coast. It was so hot today so the dip was great but really lethal slippery seaweed underfoot so had to slither into water over the rocks, was fine as the usually razor sharp volcanic rocks had been worn into beautifully smooth sculptural curves by the waves.
We walked back to Las Puntas and had a really welcome G&T at the wonderful restaurant/hotel La Punta Grande. It used to be a fishing boat storage wharehouse with a very dangerous sea access, there is an old crane  which was used to hoist the boats out of the water as there is no safe harbour or beach. The restaurante has a great collection of ships' identification plaques and a slightly sinister ancient diving suit displayed in the corner.

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

El Hierro: La virgen de Los Reys fiesta

Only once every 4 years does the Virgen de los Reyes decend from her remote ermita on a long pilgrimage down to the coast at Valverde but every year there are two celebrations where she has a quick whizz around the ermita accompanied by dancers and musicians.
The dancers, men and women, wear a peculiar costume with white lace petticoats, a red apron with pockets and extraordinary headwear. The bonnet is variously decorated with flowers, feathers, sequins and long ribbon streamers. The dance is energetic and rythmic with castanets. 
The carved wooden image of the virgen was brought to El Hierro in 1548 when a ship on its way to the new world was becalmed off shore, the crew ran out of food and water, they were provided with supplies by shepherds, in return they donated the only object of value on board, an image of the virgin, immediately a wind came and they could continue their voyage, it was the day of epiphany or Kings' day in Spanish and so she was named.
It is thought that these costumes must have been introduced to the island by early 16th century settlers from Galicia, Asturias, Portugal and Extremadura as there are very similar costumes in these places. They also reminded me of Morris Men which apparently could orginally have been Moorish Men, an ethnological puzzle.

El Hierro- September 24: waiting for the full moon in Sabinosa


Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Habiba: a little house at Finca al-manzil

At last the casita is finished, it's been through various stages over the years. From tack room with basic accommodation surrounded by saddles and outside organic loo, then an open studio, now one big room with bathroom, dressing room and outside kitchen on covered porch. It still has the flat roof with amazing views of the countryside and  mountains, on eye level with surrounding trees and wonderful canchales, rock craggy rock formations .
We have called it Habiba which means "little darling" in Arabic, I like this word with a link to habi (tation).
Although it's super simple, it's really romantic tucked away in a beautiful part of the finca, very tranquil and secluded.
It's just for two and available from spring 2019.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...