Dear Guests and friends of Casa Mosaica,
I hope my first newsletter of 2022 finds you well and optimistic; it certainly feels, from where we are currently in the UK that travel should be a lot easier this year, I certainly hope so as I do particularly want to welcome back guests who’s holidays were cancelled in the last 2 years; and sincerely hope that my #travel pledge NHS nominee can finally get to have her free week with us.
We were very lucky to have some wonderful Autumn weather in Gaucín during the month of November and early December, cold mornings and evenings and the bliss of many sunny even hot outdoor lunches requiring sun cream, a hat and sunglasses, oh the joy of the winter sun!
Gaucín’s Christmas decorations this year included a Christmas tree outside the Casita gates and even a snowman!! He might have melted it he were real!
We seemed to manage to fit in quite a few outdoor lunches in our favourite Gaucin restaurants and tapas bars. Those who remember Paquelos Bar, opposite the bank will be pleased to know that it’s opened again, under great new management and cleverly they open on Monday when most of the other eateries are closed. It has the same nice traditional interiors and good food with fresh fish on Thursdays.
In the spring of 2020 I replaced my funny old wood burner, that was pretty ineffective, although housed in a rather “mad/lovely” chimney, with a new wood stove that heats the radiators instead of using so much gas. It’s been a great success in terms of warmth and using much less gas and I feel pretty confident that my local wood supply is regenerated and more eco then the pellets you can get in Spain…My spring maintenance plan this year is to replace the Casita fire with the same type of stove, not quite sure of the finished look yet. I’ve had more guests staying for longer in the winter and spring months, when the fire is necessary, indeed I believe several books have been written under the Casita roof! This new fire will help my green footprint and make the Casita more cosy as well as keeping the costs low.
We quite often go to the food market in La Linea, the frontier town with Gibraltar and have tapas at various stalls; on our last visit we went with friends who go regularly to the Marbella indoor food market. What a lovely surprise, several good butchers, wonderful fish and excellent local fruit and veg, but best of all a bar offering the most delicious oysters, one had to have a glass to go with it of course! The market opens directly on from the carpark so it’s all very easy. I will put directions and details in my house book for guests who would like to try it.
Easter is an interesting time in Spain for those who have not been at this time of year before. Semana Santa or Holy week, is celebrated in all the towns and villages of Andalucía. In Ronda is it an event of great significance, more important than Christmas, the processions are the result of intense preparation and devotion and well worth seeing. On Easter Sunday in Gaucín, as a climax to Holy Week and after all the processions are over they put on “El Toro de Cuerda”, bull on a rope: a village version of the San Fermines in Pamplona. We are sincerely hoping that all these events do manage to take place this year after a 2 year absence.
At the end of April Gaucíneros and the historical cultural association “Villa del Bosque” join together to re-enact the invasion of the Gaucín by Napoleonic troops, during the Wars of Independence of 1808/10. Everyone seems to join in and enjoy dressing up in costume.
March, April and May are great months for walking, riding and cycling even if the other events do not take place. The Town Hall has produced a great book of walks with a corresponding App which works brilliantly for amazing walks in the area, all details in the house book.
There are plenty of weeks still available to rent this spring if you are longing to enjoy some of these types of activities.
There always seems to be somewhere new to discover and we had the most amazing (fairly gentle 4.5km) walk from the Almocabar gate in Ronda to the “Tajo del Abanico”, named for the cave that looks like a fan (abanico). It takes you to a river valley which is filled with beautiful wild flowers in the spring. More information here
. We had a most delicious lunch afterwards at Morabito overlooking the Ronda gorge.
I have been recommended 2 new restaurants in Ronda by local friends, which we will tryout on our next visit so I can report back and add to the House Book for visitors.
I hope some of you managed to see the excellent programme “Blood and Gold” with Simon Sebag Montefiore, 2000 years of Spain’s history, fascinating and well worth watching on iplayer.
I think that’s it for now, more after our next visit and renovations this spring.
Best wishes to you all and hope to welcome you back to Casa Mosaica soon. Emma, Ruffi, Raffa, Kevin & Geoffrey