San Isidro and a little walk around the village

16 May

The 15th May is the Feast of San Isidro Labrador, the Patron Saint of Farmers. He´s also the Patron Saint of Madrid, do pop over to BlueJellyBean´s blog and check out her beautiful recipe in celebration of this feast day.

One of the three village bars (and there are only about 250 inhabitants!)

Summer has arrived like an explosion. No gentle easing into gradually warmer days. It turned overnight from Spring to Summer and temperatures in the 30s just a few days ago.

View from the village

The celebration of San Isidro is one of the first big summer celebrations, and is particularly important in villages like ours.  Most of the inhabitants rely on the land to employ and feed them to some degree or another. Things are tough in Spain right now and work is scarce. Today is symbolic for many of these land workers and planting today hopefully carries a blessing from San Isidro for a good crop. Tonight we finished planting the last of our vegetables garden…well, we´ll take help where we can get it!

Main Street!

The statue of the Saint was blessed in the little village church and processed down through the village to our little sports centre which has a large building used for village gatherings.

It´s a Pueblo Blanco, a white village. Perhaps not the quaintest or prettiest, but it has a certain charm. The streets were quiet today as most people were in the church when we arrived.

Obligatory Old Boys sitting on a bench in the square

Although our village celebrations were scaled down from previous years, there was still time to enjoy a plate of rice together and have a few drinks.

The cooks did a great job!

Oh, and a little dance of course.

Little Dancing Queens!

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66 Responses to “San Isidro and a little walk around the village”

  1. idiosyncratic eye May 16, 2012 at 00:21 #

    I wonder if that Is that the same guy that the Tuscans base their planting calculations around, the name seems familiar somewhere. Looks like you’re having beautiful weather, here we’re not committing to any particular season for more than a day at a time. 😉

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:32 #

      Could well be – I think it´s a Catholic thing, so very likely! The weather is amazing here right now, it´s been hot for a week…

  2. tedgriffith May 16, 2012 at 00:24 #

    Thank you so much for sharing the celebration. I love the look of the village, and especially the location! That view from the village is terrific. To me, small towns and villages with country folk are so much more appealing than the city. 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:34 #

      I love our little village, although we live in a Hamlet about 7km away. The views round here are pretty incredible – the area is known as “The Pyrenees of the South”!

  3. Bluejellybeans May 16, 2012 at 00:24 #

    ¡Qué bonito!
    Me ha gustado mucho tu post, Tanya. No tenía ni idea que el Santo también estuviese por allí 😉 Seguro que os dejará una muy buena cosecha.
    Gracias por el pingback, eres un encanto 🙂 !!

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:35 #

      Hola Giovanna – si San Isidro es puy apreciado por aquí y muchos de los pueblos pequeños celebran. El fin de semana al final de Mayo, tenemos también la romería de San Isidro!

  4. niasunset May 16, 2012 at 00:27 #

    Happy Celebrations… seems it was a great fun. Thank you dear Chica, I loved your photographs. Love, nia

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:35 #

      It was lovely, I really like the little village celebrations!

  5. Michelle May 16, 2012 at 00:54 #

    Thanks for sharing the celebrations. I’ll keep fingers crossed that San Isidro Labrador helps the farmers this year. And, I love your photos—glad to see that new camera getting a workout!

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:44 #

      Yes, I felt like the local press photographer yesterday, great fun! We planted some runner beans last night which looked very sad and limp from the sun, this morning they are looking very perky. Not sure if it was the Saint or Big Man´s gardening skills, but we´re doing something right!

  6. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide May 16, 2012 at 01:17 #

    Looks so much fun. And very tasty!

  7. Simply Tia May 16, 2012 at 02:56 #

    Is that paella that the cooks made Tanya?

    And I truly enjoyed reading this post. Very informative and interesting. I love the view from the village. Those mountains are breathtaking.

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:51 #

      Yes, it was paella. They made two like that! It´s very typical food for a fiesta here and so tasty! Glad you liked the views, I have a similar view from my garden and I never get tired of looking at it 🙂

  8. Mad Dog May 16, 2012 at 04:16 #

    Your village looks fantastic – I especially like the mountain, the food and the look of the bar! Good job they don’t have to carry San Isidro up there 😉

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:57 #

      It´s tiny, but they do know how to party! Our Big Fiesta is for San Miguel at the end of September….you´d be amazed at how much fun we have 🙂 Our hamlet is about 7km away from the “hurly burly” of village life … can´t take the pace of these big cities 😉

  9. Karista May 16, 2012 at 05:35 #

    What a wonderful glimpse of San Isidro, such a beautiful place to live! And the little dancers are adorable. Thanks for sharing your part of the world!

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 08:58 #

      Thanks Karista, it´s a lovely place t olive, I am very lucky indeed!

  10. ChgoJohn May 16, 2012 at 05:54 #

    What a nice little town and it explains why you are so self-sufficient — or is there a large shopping mall just outside of view on Main Street? And with 3 bars for 250 people, it’s good to see it’s a community that has its priorities in order. I bet those little girls stole the show wherever they went. How cute are they? I hope you all enjoyed the holiday!

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 09:01 #

      Glad you liked it John! There are two little shops in the village which are like stepping into someone´s living room. They stock pretty much everything you need to survive! In the next village, a couple of extra kms away there are 2 butchers, a fish shop, a little hardware store, 24 hour medical centre, dentist…you get the picture…and only about 600 residents so we are well looked after without needing to go far. We do have a Mall though about 50km away, so when I get desperate it´s about 45 mins drive down the twisty mountain road!

  11. Food,Photography & France May 16, 2012 at 08:28 #

    It’s extraordinary how our society has such faith in saints. They certainly haven’t got a great track record for putting things right. Maybe it’s because painted statues don’t make promises that they cannot fulfil:)

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 09:05 #

      I agree! Was bought up a Catholic, but here there is a tendency to lean very much towards what I would term “idolatry” and it´s turned me the other way. I think a lot of the feasts round here though are also tied into planting times, months, the moon etc…those I have more faith in! Mind you, I´m not one to turn down a good fiesta 😉

  12. rsmacaalay May 16, 2012 at 08:45 #

    Wow look at that paella, makes me wanna grab some now

  13. thecompletecookbook May 16, 2012 at 09:25 #

    How fun for you to take us along with you, thanks Tanya and would you look at those little poppets dancing – too cute.
    Enjoy the summer – we are heading into winter – not my idea of fun!
    🙂 Mandy

  14. promenadeplantings May 16, 2012 at 10:14 #

    I’ve fallen in love with your village – the views, the old boys on the bench, the white houses, that frenetic main street, plus I’d get to be a ancing quen 🙂 I hope your vegetable garden gets all the rain and sun it needs 🙂

    • promenadeplantings May 16, 2012 at 10:14 #

      that was meant to say Dancing not ancing ….

      • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 10:19 #

        Or maybe Prancing?!

      • promenadeplantings May 16, 2012 at 10:21 #

        Yes Prancing Queen! More likely to be sitting there with the old boys, I can wear wrinkly tights and sensible shoes 🙂

      • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 10:27 #

        No tights, you´d melt! But yes, sensible shoes recommended as it´s all cobbles and steep paths 😉

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 10:19 #

      I fell in love with it too…if you´re ever in the area would be happy to give you the tour (will take about 7 minutes!) and if you´re here at Fiesta time you can be a Dancing Queen too and then take a breather on the bench with the old boys!

      • PendleStitches May 16, 2012 at 13:12 #

        Your village is very charming and I love these traditional celebrations that bring communities together. They are particulaly important during harder times like we are all experiencing at the moment. And just how adorable are those little dancers? Glad you had fun.

      • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 13:54 #

        Thank you – and I agree, in tougher times we appreciate a Little cheer, even if it´s on a budget and scaled down. I think everyone had fun!

  15. gardenfreshtomatoes May 16, 2012 at 14:02 #

    Love the glimpse into village life, Tanya!
    I have the feeling that these celebrations pre-date the church and the saints…people aren’t good at giving up their traditions, especially if there’s a party involved! So, the old festival got a new face, and life went on as usual…

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 17:09 #

      I think you´re right, these celebrations go way, way back! And we are always keen to get together and raise a glass and share some food…howveer humble it may be.

  16. zestybeandog May 16, 2012 at 16:21 #

    Ohhh paella! I love the look of all of this!

  17. bitsandbreadcrumbs May 16, 2012 at 16:30 #

    That’s quite a paella there, and what a pretty little village! I love the mountain view from the village, so beautiful. Looks like it was a very happy feast day, and may all your crops be bountiful. What’s with the early summer this year? We’ve been in summer for a month now!

    • Chica Andaluza May 16, 2012 at 17:11 #

      It was a biggish one – but you should see some of the pans they use when it´s a big village! Summer is here and it´s weird..too hot, too soon. Fingers crossed that we all have bountiful crops 🙂

      • bitsandbreadcrumbs May 16, 2012 at 17:16 #

        I remember seeing an episode from a travel show that Jaime Oliver did in Spain where he helped make a paella for a whole town in the biggest and most amazing looking pan I’ve ever seen. It was the size of a round about! They had to use oars to stir it.

  18. Just A Smidgen May 16, 2012 at 19:18 #

    What a lovely way to spend a day.. a pretty celebration and I loved your dancing queens.. so sweet! What a massive batch of paella.. how ever does a person learn how to do that?!

    • Chica Andaluza May 17, 2012 at 10:51 #

      It was fun and I think the guy who cooks the paella has been doing it since he was a child!

  19. Karen May 16, 2012 at 19:49 #

    Your village looks as charming as I imagined it would. I do hope that Saint Isidore looks kindly on all of Spain.

    • Chica Andaluza May 17, 2012 at 11:00 #

      Thank you Karen – we´re all keeping our fingers crossed for bumper crops!

  20. chaiselongue1 May 16, 2012 at 21:32 #

    It looks fun, with a great paella and the village looks lovely. I like all those white villages and towns with the black balconies and window grilles.

    • Chica Andaluza May 17, 2012 at 11:04 #

      Most of the villages round here look like that and (the women usually) folk take great pride in whitewashing the houses and planting their geraniums!

  21. TBM May 17, 2012 at 09:28 #

    Wonderful…I love to witness events like this. It is such a wonderful way to get to know a culture. And I’m jealous that the weather is warm. The cold and rain has stopped off in London and doesn’t really want to leave. Thanks for sharing the event!

    • Chica Andaluza May 17, 2012 at 11:47 #

      I love things like this too! My best pal is heading over from London today – she said she´s all wrapped up and I´m melting right now 😉

  22. Tandy May 17, 2012 at 14:39 #

    Those little dancers are too cute! It is so tough here as well but we can only hope Europe comes out of crisis soon!

    • Chica Andaluza May 17, 2012 at 15:57 #

      Here´s hoping – we´ve all been through it before & out the other side – let´s hope it´s not too long!

  23. foodblogandthedog May 17, 2012 at 19:12 #

    I love the processions here but not the noisy rockets (cojetes) in the early morning, do you get those where you are? I’m so annoyed that I still haven’t manged to capture any processions to share on my blog it always rains and spoils everything!! Doesn’t look like we’ll be getting much more rain though! Your village looks pretty btw.

    • Chica Andaluza May 19, 2012 at 09:19 #

      Oh yes, we get the rockets too in the early hours of the morning! Fortunately we live away from the village so if we´re not at the fiesta we usually only hear them in the distance 😉

  24. spree May 18, 2012 at 22:38 #

    Oh Tanya, I l o v e these excursions into your world! It feels good to “place” you, to see the people and the mountains that surround you there, to see the processions that pass through your streets, the experiences that make life what it is for you there, with Big Man on the mountain. Thank you for sharing you (and that) with us! And man would I like a bowl of that steaming paella!

    • Chica Andaluza May 19, 2012 at 09:21 #

      Glad you enjoyed it Spree – I love to hear that people like these posts and it´s nice to share them!

  25. Charles May 19, 2012 at 01:01 #

    Hi Chica – what a wonderful little village it looks. It seems like it must have a really relaxed pace of life with so few residents… and the views from there… you weren’t kidding when you describe your life as being half-way up a mountain sometimes. Beautiful! Thanks for sharing the photos 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza May 19, 2012 at 09:22 #

      Yes, despite the tough economic climate, life it still relaxed and happy. Especially now the warm weather has arrived – Andalucíans live outside in the summer!

  26. Michi May 19, 2012 at 12:21 #

    I love ferias, and the little girls in their dresses are too adorable!!!

  27. rowena May 19, 2012 at 17:17 #

    Thank you for visiting my blog, and leading me to yours. That looks like a fun festival, I hope it bodes well for your vegetable garden!

    • Chica Andaluza May 20, 2012 at 09:36 #

      Thank you to you too! It was a fun fiesta and fingers crossed we all get plenty of veggies this year 😉

  28. nature in love May 22, 2012 at 04:30 #

    Lovely pics, y hablas español también. cuidate y buena suerte.

    • Chica Andaluza May 22, 2012 at 09:21 #

      Muchísimas gracias, y si, ¡hablo español!

      • nature in love May 23, 2012 at 00:50 #

        El espanol es la lengua mas romantica that I know.
        Nice to meet you, and you have a nice blog, I will come back to see it. Take care.

  29. kathryningrid May 25, 2012 at 06:42 #

    Ooh, I love it all!

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