Two weeks ago I was fortunate to spend a few days in Southern Spain on the Costa del Sol. As August came to a close, the local Dutch weather bureau noted we had just experienced “the wettest summer since 1906”. As you may have read in my last post, I have tried to maximize any opportunity to soak in the sun in an effort to ward off signs of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). While some people think SAD is a bunch of hokey baloney, I honestly believe my mood is quite vulnerable to these long periods of rain and gloomy skies.
Enter my friend Barbara and her offer to spend a few days at her seaside property just outside of Marbella. How could I say no? The weather forecast was perfectly sunny with temperatures in the mid 80’s F (~30 C) all week…which I guess is just par for the course since the Costa del Sol receives an average of 320 days of sun. Compared to Amsterdam’s average of 200 days of rain per year, this was a no-brainer.
During the week, we enjoyed lounging by the pool, walking on the beach, gorgeous sunsets, and terrace dining. From the terrace, we could see across the Mediterranean to the coast of Africa. Looking west also afforded views of the Rock of Gibraltor. Throughout the week we grazed on fabulous tapas of pimentos pardon, pulpo, jamon y manchego, gambas pil pil, Spanish meatballs, and melon wrapped prosciutto— I was glad I packed my running shoes to burn off a few calories!
The day before we left, Barbara drove us to Casares; a white-house village in the Sierra Bermeja with a population of about 3,000 people and beautiful views. The remains of a 12th century Moorish castle linger at the peak of the town and provide panoramic views of the picturesque town of Casares set against the mountains. The sun sparkled against the red-brown mountains which are dotted with orchards, olive trees, and cork woods. As we wandered the steep and narrow walkways nestled between the ancient white homes, the town was busy preparing for the upcoming annual festival, Feria del Cristo. Seeking shade under a patio umbrella, we enjoyed lunch at the tapas bar in the town square and noticed a few women gathered at the public water fountain chatting away. As I sat with a cold cerveza in hand and enjoyed the last few hours of warm sunshine tingling on my skin, G sent a message “Do not come home unless you bring the sun with you.” The last few days in Amsterdam had been a soaking wet and windy mess.
By some crazy miracle, I managed to fill his request. Upon my return, the weekend weather turned out better than originally forecast and the following week was filled with more sunny days than we have seen in weeks. Thank you Mother Nature.
CLICK HERE for a quick slideshow of my photos from Marbella and Casares.
If you plan to visit the Costa del Sol, check out Barbara’s property for your holiday stay. It’s a beautiful apartment with spectacular views, lush gardens, and pools all over the property with the beach only a few minutes’ walk away. CLICK HERE to view property details.