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"When I bought an apartment in Ronda in 2001 and a house in 2003, Paul was an invaluable help in my dealings with estate agents, lawyers, at the bank and at the notary. It’s too risky to do it all without a competent interpreter. Many do, but I would strongly advise against it."
Dr J Burgess, Warrington, UK, January 2010

New Year’s Eve PDF
Friday, 01 January 2010 00:00
 

New Year’s Eve

What a great night! (I think!)

I’d arrived back in Spain, after spending Christmas with my family in the UK, early on 31 January, absolutely shattered after an uncomfortable and sleepless night on the chairs at Bristol Airport. After a three-hour siesta in the afternoon, however, I was awake again and raring to go, and what a thoroughly pleasant evening was in store.

 

Invited for dinner at English friends and neighbours, Brenda and Jeremy, ten of us started toasting the new year at around 9 pm followed by a delicious dinner of boeuf bourgignon, before we decamped armed with umbrellas (it was still pouring!), bottles of cava and tins of grapes to the village square to welcome in 2010.

The entire police force was out – the two local municipales, Paco and José – to ensure good order! Local youngsters in suits and ties made lots of noise, but were no trouble. After scoffing our grapes, kissing everybody in sight and wishing everyone a ¡Feliz Año! we transferred to the local hotel, the recently taken over and renamed El Elefante Amarillo. Well, the place was full with foreigners like ourselves, but also lots of local Spaniards, who have taken to heart with alacrity the generous and reasonably priced approach of the new owner, Chris Risbey. Drinks were on the house all night, so we over-indulged but the craic was excellent. Much rubbish was spoken, I’m sure, but it was all very good-natured! At 3 am it was back to B and J’s for sloe gin, Christmas cake and a game of Dingbats! Try explaining how that works to a non-English speaking partner!

Then it was bedtime (way-past, actually), before an unheard-of long lie-in this morning!

Now we need to recover, for there’s another party tonight at Roz and Paul’s! Maybe I’m getting too old for all this drinking and partying! But, hey, what the hell...!

 

Paul Whitelock

Paul is a Joint Honours graduate in Spanish and German, a qualified teacher (PGCE) and has a Member of the Institute of Linguists (MIL) qualification.

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