It’s the 7th of November and I’m finding it hard to believe that here in Aguadulce the temperature is still mid-20°C every day. Though the mornings and evenings are cooler now, I’m still wearing short sleeves and sandals, and summer just goes on and on. I wasn’t completely convinced by our winter choice of Aguadulce when we first arrived, but now that we’ve settled in, it’s quite grown on me.
So here we are in early November and the sky every day is of the deepest blue, and the great hulking orange rocky hill that rises up behind the marina is like a cardboard cut-out from a Western movie set against the impossibly blue sky.
Hardly a day goes by without a visit to the beach, only a brief two-minute walk from Carina. We don our swimwear, walk to the beach and plunge into the warm Mediterranean water without hesitation. It’s invariably warm. The water is crystal clear and most days is as still as a mill pond and, as I swim, I see small fish swimming beneath me.
At night we sleep under a flimsy sheet and until a couple of nights ago, we kept the cabin hatch wide open all night. Some locals have told me it’s unusually warm for the time of year, others have told me it’s perfectly normal. Irrespective of who to believe, I’m certainly enjoying this extended summer.
Hallowe’en this year was a long way from the Hallowe’ens of my childhood. Growing up in Ireland, we did the rounds of all the neighbouring houses, then went to town to visit my Nana’s neighbour’s too. I remember adults and children dressed in home-made Hallowe’en costumes, performing on doorsteps, for sweets and money. We sang, told jokes, played musical instruments, often in the rain or the cold October wind. Then we would return home and play messy Hallowe’en games in the kitchen.
This year, we attempted to recreate those Hallowe’ens of my childhood. All week, we crafted ghosts and spiders and other festive decorations to hang around the boat. The girls dressed in the costumes Grandma gave them last year. Before leaving Carina we practiced some songs, accompanied by Julian on the recorder. Then we went around to visit some other boats in the marina, and entertained our neighbours with songs and some rather bad jokes. Our neighbours weren’t expecting Hallowe’en visitors, but they found rewards for our efforts nonetheless. Afterwards, back home on Carina, I introduced the girls to the various crazy and messy games that were such a huge part of my childhood Hallowe’ens.
What was strange was that Julian and I undertook our Hallowe’en visiting dressed in shorts and t-shirts! I’m not expecting to celebrate Christmas similarly attired!
PS…my latest published article ‘Learning by doing: Lessons from my Inuit teachers’ can now be viewed here on this blog.