Bitten by Spain
The Murcian Countryside – A Baptism by Fire

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Foreword

Introduction

1. Darkness
"At around midnight, here in the small and flimsy tin can that I laughingly call home, I found myself staring into the eye of the most spectacular ... " - read more
2. Neighbours & Eggs
"We met our neighbours recently. They are only part- time neighbours in that they live elsewhere in what I imagine to be great ... " - read more
3. Drivers & Drunks
"We went out to the local Tuesday street market recently to stock up on the fruit and vegetables that we’re not yet at the point of ... " - read more
4. Morning Glory
"I have never in my life seen such rain! In fact, if I’m totally honest, I didn’t see most of it, as much of the time the cloud was enveloping ... " - read more
5. Almond Trees & Visiting Boars
"We are all feeling very much better here for the dramatic change in weather. And what a change! Yesterday morning I was freezing and had two jumpers on while I ... " - read more
6. Incommunicado
"Sincere apologies for my greeting of the Sun last week. I was so glad to see it that I threw the doors wide, mixed some sangría, put on the ... " - read more
7. Self-Sufficiency & the Arrival of Marcos
"We’ve spent a few days hacking down some of the undergrowth on the top level of the land near the caravan, following dire warnings by Pedro next door of all ... " - read more
8. The Onset of Tractors
"Okay, the saga of the phone continued recently when Donna, a friend recently met here, who shares many of my passions and lives about ... " - read more
9. Murcian Spanish & Bonfires
"If anyone ever describes the campo as peaceful and tranquil, just laugh outright in their face. With the weather suddenly turning ridiculously warm for May, I have needed to open ... " - read more
10. Of Toys & Confused Birds
"My mum has always maintained that I am the world’s biggest sucker for waifs and strays. It’s probably the only subject that she and John ... " - read more
11. Monstrous Puppies, Hungry Spiders & Brats
"The vegetable patch has been flattened. Marcos, who is, I suspect, half mastín, half yeti, half sabre-toothed tiger and half ... " - read more
12. The Doctor & Queue-Jumping
"So it would seem that I now have an active crèche running here. Firstly I am inundated at the weekend with the usual selection of kids that accumulate in the ... " - read more
13. Midsummer & More Ani- mal Madness
"I made my habitual trip to Alicante airport on Saturday evening to collect John for his four days of work here between his rest periods in the ... " - read more
14. Family, Rubbish & the Uninvited Melon
"Well, I’m still sane (I think – and feedback is neither necessary nor desirable) after the trials and tribulations of sharing my caravan with three others for the best ... " - read more
15. Noise & Fruit
"Along the valley in an easterly direction towards Mula, there is, just in sight of the caravan on the other side of the river, a large restaurant complex with a ... " - read more
16. Spanish Builders
"I am delighted to say that I am finally able to announce our proud ownership of internal walls in the house. Great cause for celebration – I was beginning to ... " - read more
17. Organic Gardening & Paternity
"Before anything else, I have to say that my sister is a baggage. I received a rather sheepish e-mail from her yesterday admitting that she may have ... " - read more
18. Joggers
"The camino that brings us from town to our finca continues weaving onwards through our land, from the point of entry next to Pedro and Loli’s, down past the ... " - read more
19. Face of a Town with No Teeth
"Bullas is a town built on a mound, a feature it has in common with all of its immediate neighbours – Cehegín, Caravaca de la Cruz, Mula, Pliego and so ... " - read more
20. Overheating & Camomile Tea
"I know, I made a solemn promise when we sold the villa that I’d be a good girl and live a quiet and uncomplaining existence in the caravan for as ... " - read more
21. Neighbours: Good & Bad
"After having lived here for some four months, I can state with certainty that we have here in the finca some wonderful vecinos (neighbours) in the shape of ... " - read more
22. Summer Life
"Pedro’s cockerel next door has now graduated and is all grown up. The father of four adorable little chicks, he no longer feels it acceptable to take ... " - read more
23. Memories & Frustrations
"I have been transported back to my childhood. Memories surface of happy and carefree times when it was still fine to spend long summer days messing around at ... " - read more
24. Domesticity & Spanish Dinner Parties
"Today I have had to dig up and level the entire vegetable patch. Standing as it did between the caravan and the edge of the terrace, it lay directly ... " - read more
25. More Mischief & Birthday Parties
"José called me on my mobile a few days ago to proclaim excitedly that he has taken the photographs that he and John had acquired clandestinely to the ... " - read more
26. The Guardia Civil & Up- setting the Pedros
"When I visited the rather imposing offices of the Guardia Civil in Bullas to report the breaking and entering of our property and the subsequent theft of some ... " - read more
27. Litter & Harvests
"My friend Donna, who lives on the other side of Bullas, has had three visitors to stay with her lately, and we met up a couple of times while they ... " - read more
28. Keeping Up Appearances
"I have already had cause to mention the Spanish propensity for child-like staring; I also feel the need to remark on the similarly ingenuous and very commonplace ... " - read more
29. Some Results
"I am finally able to declare that my spider bite has fully healed. Okay, it took the best part of five months. And it has left a hideously deformed scar ... " - read more
30. The Birds, the Birds
"I recently made my way home from the airport during a late October evening into an absolutely vivid and glorious late autumn dusk. To the west ... " - read more
Reviews

"Debs describes life in a remote valley, while she and her husband are renovating a shed into a liveable house..."

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