Spring in the Sierra Aracena

On the 30th April in Sweden it is Walpurgis Night and time to celebrate the beginning of Spring for the First of May. Anna’s blog has some interesting insights into this festival and of course her wonderful art work.
https://fargaregardsanna.wordpress.com/2018/04/30/walpurgis-night-valborg/

Even though this April seems to be going on the record for Spain’s coldest since 1974 , here in the south of Spain we have had glimpses of Spring. The variability and size of Spain means that there can be variation in the weather but this year the news is showing snow today in Cantabria and people sunbathing on the Mediterranean coast!

Iberian frog enjoying plentiful water and sunshine.

At Navasola we are lucky to have had so much rainfall after the drought that lasted throughout the summer and into the winter. Spring has brought much needed rain. One Spanish programme seemed to be suggesting that the reservoirs were now back to capacity. And there’s still some more rain due! These photos are from early April and at a friend’s finca on the warmer south facing side of the valley. Signs of butterflies, bees and blossom are always welcome.

The Easter celebrations went smoothly in the town of Aracena and it is amazing the dedication and work that goes into the Holy Week processions. The story of the Passion is brought onto the streets and is both a religious and cultural occasion.

It takes at least 5 x 5 pairs of feet to carry the float. And all around the town too!
And the band keeps playing!

Other celebrations happen in April too and there is a big horse and mule event in the village of Puerto Moral. This involves processions of a different type. As this fell at the same time as Easter the villagers were busy with both on the Easter Sunday. We enjoyed free paella and vino there and lots of decorated donkeys.

My travels and granddaughter have taken me back to the UK and away from a routine and blogging yet again. We spent a glorious day in Kew Gardens with Japanese cherry blossom and temperatures around 27 degrees! Snow and cold weather came back within a week though!

Olivia is now about 6 months and beginning the joy of tasting. But puréed cauliflower didn’t go down well! I love cauliflower but it tasted too strong puréed so it must be the texture of a vegetable that helps and lashings of cheese. However, I am trying vegan again so no cheese although almond milk can make a good sauce base with some flavouring.

I think she knows who I am even after a few months!

I have many ideas for more blog posts and we have been busy discovering nature trails and a bird sanctuary near Doñana wetlands. I have also finally had a reply from a literary agent which though a rejection has made me feel positive. It was very disappointing from some of the previous ones that they could not take a few minutes to reply. Even an auto response would at least mean they had received and read some of it. I have some other agents lined up who do reply and a publisher. I am also impressed with an author who publishes with Pegasus.

The Puerto Moral Stork looking on at the festivities.

22 thoughts on “Spring in the Sierra Aracena”

    1. I think the weather is having a word with us but think it very difficult for other living things to adapt to this mercurial approach. It has been very cold at times here and snow in the north of Spain. As last year we had blistering hot temperatures for months on end am not sure what to expect this year. Hope all going well for you. I have a respite so shall catch up soon!

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  1. The warm weather of the week before last was glorious but so short-lived. We have had almost continuous rain since Friday morning and the wind and cold is most un-spring-like! Olivia looks absolutely charming! I can imagine it is difficult to keep away from her! I love the photo of the nesting stork and the Holy Week processions look wonderful as do the photos of the Mule and Horse event. I am so pleased you have had some decent rain at last. Drought is so worrying.

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    1. Hope all well in spite of the weather changes. Most of us in the Sierra are grateful of the rain after that drought but it has meant some postponing of festivals! They don’t cope here if there’s rain predicted for an event!

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  2. Hi 🙂 It was interesting to see the photos and hear the stories! The displays in the parades are detailed and beautiful. Good to see little Olivia growing and smiling. 🙂 It warms the heart. ❤ Such pretty flowering trees. I am happy to hear the water table is rising. I remember your comments about the drought. Spring has been late here as well. A spring thunderstorm is brewing here this morning. Almost dark as night outside of my window right now. It is a good sign, though. Need the rain for everything to grow. It is useful that one of the literary agents sent you a response even though it was a no. Did they include helpful comments? It would be nice to find someone in the literary world who could give you feedback about the story. I don't know anyone in that world or I'd tell them about you and your story. I liked it and I am one of their consumers. 🙂 A reader since the age of little Olivia. 🙂 I hope you have lots of opportunities to spend time with your granddaughter. She will remember those times with happiness and look forward to your visits. 🙂 I am looking forward to reading and seeing your posts. The area where you live is much different than any place I have been.

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  3. Thanks, Sarah you give me a lot of encouragement and the response was positive about my writing but more negative on the enthusiasm needed to market it. You were right in saying I need an agent the story resonates with. I will keep going and have found some others. I am struggling getting my WordPress app to work at the moment. It must be tired out from underuse! Thanks for your comments and yes it is a very interesting area of Spain.

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  4. It’s wonderful to hear from you and see lovely Olivia, Georgina. I sounds like you have had a busy winter and early spring, with lovely photos to tell part of the story. Sending my best wishes to all. ❤

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  5. Your spring looks divine! Such a super collection of photos. Love the butterfly and that bee both enjoying the flavours of spring. The festivities look like fun 🙂 And that white horse is stunning! As for that paella .. I bet it was delicious. Such a lovely photo of you and Olivia ..

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      1. I watch it on a catch up from British TV that I download before coming back to Spain. The first two episodes I found very amusing but with realistic insights into family and the struggle to adapt and build a new life. In the second episode he manages to upset the locals with one phrase’ a dead end town’ even though it seems his article has mainly been positive about his experiences there. For me that episode was about the effect writing can have and the spin that you might not expect! I find it time well spent on a cold evening!

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  6. Georgina, you must have been in the UK during the mini-heatwave – although it promises to be warm again this Bank Holiday Weekend! Ahh.. . it’s lovely to see you with Olivia – you’re both having an intense chat! 😀 I love learning about the Easter in Spain and all the processions and the work that goes into them. Is Easter bigger than Christmas in Spain – I know it is in Greece. Good news about the positive comment from the publishers – it is a real boost with good feedback and I wish you luck on your continued search. Happy Weekend & Spring! 🌸🌼

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    1. Thanks, Annika, and it may be hotter in the UK than here this weekend. Yes, the Easter processions are very big and serious but the Christmas procession of the Three Kings is also important but I think has an emphasis on children, presents and sweets! My first written rejection rather than just being ignored seems a plus and I will continue on my own quest for publication this year. Am sorry have not got round to reading your book yet but will soon.

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  7. Hi and thanks for finding me as otherwise I probably wouldn’t have stumbled upon your interesting blog! It’s been a cold April all over Europe and we all long for warmth and time spent outdoors in our gardens and nature. Love your pics as they give me an insight into an unknown world. Would love to go to Donana NP one day, must be bliss for a photographer. We travelled around Spain years ago but I hadn’t heard about it at the time. Maybe you’d like to do a post some day? Happy spring days 🙂

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