The rain in Spain

By: roughseasinthemed

Nov 11 2012

Tags: ,

Category: Flowers, Gardens, Photography, Spain, Travel


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The endless rain must have been all over the southern part of the Iberian peninsula.

I made it back to the finca in a relatively dry state, and after assuring the neighbours that we were all well, exchanging kisses (which we don’t normally do, so they must have been seriously worried!!) and telling them there were no problems apart from endless water leaks in our block, we resumed our typical conversation. Which is what I need to do in the garden.

The rain meant José hadn’t needed to water too much, but he did point out that he had emptied two of the containers, ie I needed to Fill Them Up.

Then we got onto the beans. Naughtily, I had bought a pack of beans without telling them, so they were pretty surprised to see them shooting up in my veg plot.

The trouble was, they had shot up in my absence far too quickly and needed staking.

‘You need to sow some more,’ pointed out José. ‘It’s a good time now with all the rain.’ Yes, José.

He looked dubiously at my rocket. ‘Do you eat that?’ He asks me this every time because he just can’t believe it. ‘Yes, but I’m going to give some to the chickens.’ He shook his head.

The roses needed pruning, the plumbago was looking sorry for itself, and I trimmed off some jasmine so the postie can get to the letterbox. And as for the weeds…

I’d just finished staking the beans after a good two hours work, when the rain started spotting. By the time I had collected my tools and tidied up, it was chucking it down. No more gardening for me.

It rained all evening and all night. When I got up, I grabbed a quick window of opportunity and threw some more beans in the veg plot, filled up the water butt and the containers for José, and went to feed and water the chickens. The window wasn’t open for long and it started slashing it down again.

I walked down to the bus stop on the main road. Through the rain I could just about make out some headlights that looked very much like a bus. I was too far from the bus stop to get there in time.

My partner has a perfect technique with buses. He waves his arm and yells PARE! (stop).

He first did this in Lanzarote when, at some dark hour of the evening, we were struggling to find the bus stop to go back to Arrecife from a village in the north. Suddenly the bus appeared out of nowhere. It was of course, the last bus of the day.

It was either stand in the road and make idiots of ourselves, or pay a ridiculous sum for a taxi fare back to Arrecife. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. The bus stopped.

Based on this success, he employed the technique again in Cordoba. We hadn’t left enough time to get back to the (old) bus station, and as we rounded the corner, the bus to Málaga was just pulling out. Arm waves and PARE! came into play yet again. Now, I seriously didn’t think a bus driver would stop in the middle of Cordoba to pick us up, but he did. Bless his algodón socks.

So, as the bus approached the other day, I went all out for it. Big arm waves like a distress signal and jumping up and down on the spot. Fifty year old woman makes a serious exhibition of herself on the main road.

He drove past the bus stop. Boooooooo! And pulled up about two metres short of me. 🙂 Totally illegally but extremely considerately. ‘Gracias, caballero,’ I said. I figured he merited caballero rather than a basic hombre.

In fact catching that bus was somewhat irrelevant, as the connection to Algeciras was half an hour late. I think another two buses from my pueblo had pulled in by the time I finally got the Algeciras bus. It rained on and off all the way down the coast.

It was raining when I got off the bus in La Linea. But not too much. Until I hit the main road and the wind was blowing the rain from the east. And walking across the airfield was a nightmare.

I was glad of one thing. I’d decided to wear shorts and not trousers, on the grounds that wet legs are easier to dry and preferable to wet trousers.

Weather now? Sunny, blue sky, 12 degrees according to my Hal widget, and no rain forecast until Friday, which is good because we can hang out the washing.


13 comments on “The rain in Spain”

  1. Wow! I love the colors in this photo!


  2. Your Spanish neighbours sound like wonderful people, even to the point of taking you under their wings like family. Big contrast to vampires eh?

    So does the health and safety aspect of where’s buses stop occur in Spain too?

    Recently while in Yorkshire, I was waiting at the bus stop, the bus was in a traffic queue held up by the rail crossing about ten yards from the stop, so thinking I’d save him the time of pulling into the stop, I walked towards the bus and waited to get on, he pointed me back to the bus stop. Eventually the rail barriers lifted and the bus drove the ten yards to stop and pick me up (causing another queue behind him). ‘Sorry love, health and safety won’t let me pick you up back there in case you trip getting on’

    Rain and trouser v. bare legs, 😀 that is exactly what T says about getting them dry.


    • They are extremely sweet, well, most of the time 😀 Like many people, they don’t like change so I guess the fact that we have been there for years now helps. And we’ve helped (by which I mean mostly Adrian in our case) each other out, and it’s been nice when I’ve been able to do something like photos (with your help).

      I do think health and safety gets bad press. Technically speaking I’m sure it’s not all down to the Health and Safety Executive, more likely to be local government legal departments. I’m sure Spanish buses are meant to do exactly the same, but in the past when we first started coming here, half the bus stops didn’t even have signs. You had to know which lay-by they would pull into 😀

      But the fact that they do still stop on the road, away from the stop/station is one of the many appeals of the country, and the people. I guess they think, this person wants the bus, doesn’t want to wait in the slashing rain for another half an hour, and I can stop, so I will. It’s not illegal to stop on the side of the road, probably just against the rules. Bus drivers command a fair amount of respect here too, you don’t argue with them. Widespread car ownership is a relatively recent phenomenon in Andalucía, so most people are used to using the bus. People with cars will still often take the bus on a long journey. Spaniards are very pragmatic, if it costs more to drive, they will choose the bus. Plus, as far as I am aware, there is no status issue involved, like you get in the UK with the bus v car concept.

      With the exception of the orange condoms in torrential rain, A tries to keep his shorts on all year 🙂


  3. I’m all over the place with reading blog posts which in this case has served me well, as I enjoyed this window into your world, and have been laughing to myself re your orange condom descriptions of A’s wet weather attire… I’m with A, not the orange attire but as soon as it’s damp, I exchange my customary long pants for long boots (or rubber thongs in summer) & a short skirt…You really do have much the same relationship with those neighbours as we do ours at TA… once I got used to it, it’s sort of nice. I’m impressed with your beans, and I’d love some home grown rocket. I’m not expecting good things vis-a-vis the garden at TA when we go up in a few weeks… with so little rain everything will be dead, the neighbours have already reported the lawn is brown and lifeless. The upside is it means less yard maintenance, and no mould.


    • Yes it’s funny having neighbours in your face, but it’s more pros than cons I reckon. It took a while to get used to the Spanish seasons and growing what when, as it is totally different to the UK. In summer, no rain, all the fields are empty. Come autumn, everyone is rushing around to start planting again. I was impressed with my beans!


  4. Well, now you know what the 2012 English summer was like. That jumping in front of buses thing sounds rather risky to me, I’d be careful if I were you! Don’t the Spanish like rocket or is it just yours?


    • The good thing is, the rain doesn’t last for days on end, tends to be two or three rather than weeks of it. Although, I did hear thunder last night, and apparently it rained while I was asleep 😀 Fined up now.

      I was walking on the side of the road, in what passes for the hard shoulder, which cyclists, old guys on mopeds, and people all use. There’s no pavement, so technically we aren’t quite jumping out in front of them.

      They probably eat it more in the north. Andalucíans seem to have a very bland palate, although you can buy it in Mercadona supermarket. It never gets served in salads out (iceberg lettuce, toms, cuc, onion). It also grows wild around us, so I suspect it is considered a weed 😀


  5. i googled ‘rocket’ as i found it very difficult to imagine you enjoying parts of a spaceship and then giving some of it to your chickens. mystery solved. i enjoy arugula as well 🙂
    and i had to smile imagining you jumping up and down and waving in an effort to stop a buss – i have done similar things, particularly for one that is not yet officially on its regular route, but is headed towards the one i would normally transfer to in the morning. that is usually when the roads are not entirely passable because of snow, which we rarely get apparently, or when my car is in for repairs somewhere.
    and those beans are rather impressive! way to go! even DT surprised me here. normally when there is a whitish component somewhere in the middle of an image, it comes up with a pale grey of some sort. but not here!


    • Well, it could have picked up the tiny purple but unlikely. If that hadn’t worked I could have used the bean photo – they were equally green 😀

      Ah yes, aragula. Mostly North Americans don’t translate things like sidewalk, cilantro, trunk, fender, hood, stickshift, submarine (!!), garbage, trash, high/freeway etc etc so I’ll stick to mine and answer any questions if people don’t understand and don’t have a quick searchy. So I’m glad you found it without too much difficulty.

      I love it when the bus drivers stop though. Makes turning yourself into a total exhibition all worth while. No-one seemed remotely interested or surprised on the bus 😀


  6. […] Just not another photoblog The rain in Spain […]


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