December 5, 2015
At 8:45 in the morning (unfortunately, we didn’t beat the record of getting out of the house by 8:30) we piled into the family van filled with too many suitcases for the amount of time we would be away and began the four-hour drive to a little town in the North of Spain called Aldunate. On the way, we listened to Spanish music, One Direction, and Disney songs sung in Spanish.
Around 1:00, we arrived to the perfect little county house belonging to family friends which was complete with chicken, sheep, and endless fields of green. The weather in the North is supposed to be cooler, but it was surprisingly very mild and none of us wore jackets as we raced through the fields. I’ve decided that I shall need to invest in a country house one day. I’d love to ultimately live in the city, but there’s just something about muddy boots, stacks of hay, and being woken up by the call of a rooster that I dearly love. When I told Leire I like stacks of woods, she looked at me and told me I was weird. (She also proceeded to point out every pile of wood we passed from that moment on saying “There are those things you like!”) I do really love the country though. Maybe because it seems like a life full of such simple pleasures. (Clearly, since I’m getting excited about piles of wood). There we were, chasing chickens, jumping on haystacks, and having sword fights with sticks. I like that.
Shortly after we arrived, the rest of the family also arrived: Javi’s twin brother and his son Alvaro, and Javi’s sister with her husband and two children, Alicia and Pedro. The kids and I went to see the sheep in the barn and as we walked by, I honestly thought I heard men yelling inside but it turned out just to be the sheep baa-ing. (They sound uncannily similar). Of course the sheep decide to poo when we walked in. All the kids laughed. I laughed too. I’ve come to the conclusion that there is almost nothing in the world cuter than little Spanish boys repeatedly yelling ‘he did a poo! he did a poo!’ and laughing hysterically.
We continued our adventure down a rocky path and guess what we saw casually lying on the ground: sheep skeletons! And not just one, but multiple! Even their teeth were still intact. What a sight to see.
Speaking of sheep, for lunch we had a delicious BBQ of sizzling pork and lamb. As soon as I smelt the familiar smell of meat roasting on an outdoor grill, my mouth began to water. It was a strangely wonderful feeling to be sitting outside without a jacket on the 5th of December enjoying a BBQ and glasses of wine that never seemed to empty. For dessert, we had typical Spanish Christmas delicacies: Turrón, a candy bar of Moorish origins that is crunchy like a nougat, Mantecados, a sweet, crumbly cookie apparently made from pig lard, and Marzipan, which is very popular in Toledo.
Though we could barely get up because we were so full, after lunch we all piled back into the car and drove to the nearby city of Sos (pronounced sauce). The sun set early so it was already quite dark when we arrived, but it was still interesting to see how the city has preserved its medieval style. It was fun making our silhouettes big and scary in the light shining on an abandoned tower.
When we returned home, we watched Big Hero 6 in Spanish and then had a light dinner of meatballs and salad. I fell into bed around midnight feeling exhausted but incredibly satisfied.