Weekly photo challenge: Beyond – appearances

By: roughseasinthemed

Jan 21 2013

Tags: , , ,

Category: Life, Photography, Spain


Focal Length:3.85mm
Shutter:1/0 sec
Camera:iPhone 3GS

Or beyond fashion and pride too.

Let’s start with the main subject of the photo, Partner enjoying a beer in our kitchen in Spain.

On the Costa del Sol (sunny coast) it was bucketing down as it does in winter, so there really isn’t much to do apart from sit inside, look at the rain, and drink beer. (no TV or internet, library books all read up)

What does the well-dressed finca owner wear on a day like that? Oh, and no heating either, which may go towards explaining the outdoor clothes, sitting inside.

On top, he has a jacket given to him along with a few others by one of the residents in a block he was working on in Gib. Next, a shirt, about 20 years old from Hawkshead (bought). Underneath a free T shirt from a friend who worked for an ambulance trust and had far too many T shirts.

Next, woollen mix climbing trousers, given to him by a customer in Newcastle, who could no longer go climbing. Partner doesn’t either, although he used to. The socks were bought from Morrisons in Gib. The safety boots were provided by a firm he worked for last year in Gib. They weren’t really very good for work, so he wore his own and used these for dog walking.

Beyond him in the corner, is the sink. Well, sort of. A plastic bowl on top of a slab of marble (from a previous job) sitting on a Black and Decker workmate, with a cold tap coming out of the wall.

When we told a friend some years ago that we had a bowl on top of the workmate, for some reason she had visions of a dead workmate (ie a person) lying in the corner of our kitchen. She obviously thought we were pretty eccentric to even consider that we would do that!!

There are no tiles in that corner because we’ve never agreed how to finish off the sink part of the kitchen. Anyway, it works perfectly well, so there is no rush. It’s only been like that for ten years or so.

Next, what does the well-dressed campo (countryside) woman wear?


In a break from the rain, I nipped down the town to the veg shop. While Spanish women may be known for their exuberant and extravagant flamenco dresses, when it rains in the campo, they wear extremely sensible clothes. Flat boots, trousers, pullovers and jackets. Pretty much like me.

Like Partner, I’m also dressed in a motley selection of (warm) freebies. One of the many jackets he was given, and being brown, it matched my (bought) leggings (ยฃ10 from M&S). Underneath, a fleece top from a Gib neighbour (didn’t fit him) and a free San Miguel T shirt when they were doing a promotion a year or two ago. I bought the boots, but you can’t see those.

Back in the UK if anyone had told me I would be wearing second-hand clothes, I’m not sure if I would have slapped them in the face or fallen on the floor in hysterics.

This, after all, is the woman who wore Jean Muir and Cerruti to work, and made her own designer clothes using patterns by Donna Karan, Armani, Calvin Klein, and countless other international fashion designers.

My life has changed so much that I am beyond fashion, pride or appearance these days. Whether it is my kitchen sink or my cold weather clothes.

Perhaps not the landscape shot intended for this WordPress challenge (that may come later) but it’s always fun to put a different spin on these.

17 comments on “Weekly photo challenge: Beyond – appearances”

  1. What really comes across in this post is happiness ๐Ÿ™‚

    We can have all the riches in the world, beautiful clothes and a big flash home to brag to the neighbours about, but without happiness those things are worthless.

    You sound so content and happy, you remind me a bit of an old British TV program…..The Good Life ๐Ÿ™‚

    Just have to comment on partners calf muscles ๐Ÿ˜ฎ definitely a cyclist!!


    • i didn’t want a big flash home (or anything) to brag about, I wanted it for me. OK, I wanted a bigger garden and he wanted a double garage. Right now he has what could house three landies in one garage (but no space for anything else) and I have no garden, but have terrace, can garden ๐Ÿ™‚

      I thought I had written a post where one of my Newcastle neighbours asked us if we thought were were the Goodes. It was when I was growing veg in my fairly small terrace house garden.

      We obviously must be like that though, as it is so not the norm these days ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I’m no Felicity Kendal though. She’s shorter than me and I don’t have the husky voice ๐Ÿ˜€

      That’s his best leg ๐Ÿ˜€ His other leg is half the size (polio) but still got calf muscles. I was going to say, he’s always had them, but then, he’s always cycled. Gotta love cyclists legs ๐Ÿ™‚ Much better than footballers legs.


      • Don’t you think our ideals change as we get older too?
        When I was younger, more often than not I’d buy clothes that were in fashion, nowadays I buy for comfort and warmth.


        • Yes, I think a lot changes as we get older, or as we change our lives. And sometimes the two go together which = even more change.

          I actually didn’t buy fashion clothes as such. Just expensive ones. I mean my mum would take me to the Jaegar shop in Harrogate for clothes in my teens ๐Ÿ˜€ And later, I tended to buy expensive for work, because it was that sort of job.

          One of the reasons for not being keen on getting a job here, wearing silly clothes, instead of leggings, boots and pullover (current clothes, although a different pair of leggings to the photo, well, same but different pair).


  2. Your take on beyond is great. We enjoy the world beyond appearances also. We have a close family member who is an extreme case and lives for appearances and to consume conspicuously, and then whinges when the experiences don’t live up to hype-expectations. It drives us mad.
    It’s nice to see others – you – also valuing & enjoying simply being. Drinking beer and watching rain, looks very attractive.
    I enjoy the stories behind the beyond, not those awful “I bought this new big name this from big name there and it cost big dollars…
    If you can’t relax and not worry about appearances in your own home, environment, where can you?… I’m also not fazed about taking my come as I am appearance & attitude out into the world, these days, either.
    I think there’s a self-reward in not getting sucked in to consumerism. I love the feeling that I bucked the system/fashion when I re-use, re-invent, re-cycle or just plain abstain from the ‘temptation” of this is new & wonderful, you NEED it to be SOMEONE.
    Both of your appearances look perfectly fine to me ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Thanks for the empathy, sometimes it feels like I am the only one in the world bucking the trend, but obviously not. As V says, it may be an age thing …

      In Spain, you have to worry about the outside of your house because that is what everyone sees, and in our part of the pueblo it is a pretty tidy area. But as no-one ever gets inside, who cares about that? But you are one up on me, at least you have a sink at TA ๐Ÿ˜‰

      The big bucks thing is interesting. Some people buy things because they like them, and they are expensive. Others buy them for show. I buy Apple (iPhone, desktop and laptop) not because it is expensive (I wish it wasn’t) but because I like the OS, the design – it’s in my home, I don’t want an ugly box – and historically, they were always the computers in journalism and graphic design. I consider them a better product to windows, but that’s just my PoV. My keyboard needs cleaning ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      When we buy anything, A and I do tend to buy expensive. Not for the sake of it, but because we try and buy quality products that will last longer, or that we particularly like, Land Rovers being another example. If I can’t afford something, or don’t know what I want, I do without and wait until I can buy. Easy really.


  3. […] Weekly photo challenge: Beyond โ€“ appearances ยซ Every picture tells one […]


  4. You are right, a very similar DT colour. Congrats! But that aside, i think that time which – although it does include getting older – allows one to realize that some things simply do not matter, or at least not nearly as much as they once did. When I think of the shoes I used to wear, and the height of the heels that I could manoeuver quite successfully in, I have to shake my head. I was able to do it, however I can’t say that all of them were actually comfortable.
    And I certainly couldn’t do it now! I agree with V above – and usually dress for comfort and warmth these days.
    Anyhow, must run. Have a good night, er a good day! ๐Ÿ˜€


    • Absolutely – what on earth are you doing up at this time!!!!!

      I was pretty good on high heels too, but soon stopped. Don’t think I wore them after my teens.

      Oh and the DT was originally a pale grey, apart from anything else I find the grey so difficult to read text. So a little easy fix was called for. I’m sure you can work out what it was ๐Ÿ™‚


  5. […] Weekly photo challenge: Beyond โ€“ appearances ยซ Every picture tells one […]


  6. […] Weekly photo challenge: Beyond โ€“ appearances ยซ Every picture tells one […]


  7. Love it! Beyond all expectations. Do you think you had any hint of the life that you would be living now when you were in your mid- late twenties? I am struggling to keep up – because i have been disconnected from blogging – but is this a holiday home that you guys have in Spain or is it a move from Gib?


    • Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚ No. But Ever since I went on my world trip, mid 20s and then got married in Aus, the urge to ‘drop out’, live elsewhere, Do Something, has always fought with the must have a good job/career urge. You can see which one won!

      We bought in Spain first when we left the UK. Then we bought Gibflat which has become the main home, but we try to get back to Spain as often as poss. Not exactly the right time to sell given the state of the Spanish economy, nor do we particularly want to. It’s basically flat life in the city with the small house in the country scenario. A lot of Spaniards do that. They have a very high rate of home ownership interestingly.


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