|Thanks to Image of the Day for this beautiful phot|
There is a sense of déjà vu - of completing a full circle of life - as we find ourselves in Alcala la Real for a second summer. Last week, the fair came to town for four days of noise, unnecessary extravagance and fun - depending on your point of view - and I was reminded of our first visit last year and how it, and not the weather, marked the beginning of summer here.
I too am coming to my last week of teaching at the Academy after doing a full academic year. Teaching has its frustrations but also its great pleasures. I have a number of classes that are such a joy to teach, where the enthusiasm and engagement of the children is reward enough in itself. I also have a couple of classes - young teenagers - who are more interested in catching up on gossip with those at a different school, skipping the class or simply not engaging in the lesson. I try my best with them and have thought of all sorts of different educational games to try and encourage them and sometimes it works a bit and I have to be satisfied with that. And whilst they don't always concentrate in my class, if I see them in the street, they always give me a warm and respectful greeting - in English - which pleases me greatly.
FR is continuing his work with Escenica in Granada after his excellent month-long course in November. The work he is doing now is not exactly lucrative but we hope that it will pay dividends in the future - not necessarily in financial terms but in terms of establishing a group of people who believe in something and use theatre as the medium to share these beliefs. I do hope so as he has put such a lot of effort and time into it.
It has, on reflection, been a good year.
|I'm working on the 'patience' bubble...|
And yes, it's here in Alcala la Real!!
However, it is too small for us as it stands and the kitchen is in the garden but not joined to the main house.
It has damp walls in a couple of rooms and the staircase is showing signs of a problem and it needs a new roof and it only has a tiny garden.......it's not perfect. And the owner wants more money than we can sensibly pay him, considering it will need almost as much again spending on it once we get it. IF we get it.
The property is empty, so obviously it's not someone's home, it's a second (or even third) property and I suppose there is no pressure on the owner to sell. It's a buyer's market at the moment but in this town, there are very few properties for sale and what is available are the old, empty and, quite frankly, ruined houses in the historic centre. It is a lovely town, no doubt about it, but I have come to discover that its original houses are not of a very high quality or standard. There are some very well made new ones, but they are either for a standard family with two children (and no dog) or in a price bracket well beyond ours.
So, we are working on the owner and hope he will drop his price a little bit more - just a bit more - and if he does...well, I think I might be celebrating just a little! But let's not rush things - patience, patience, patience. Give me patience....now!!