I was invited to so some hiking, where I live there are several mountains to go check out.
But this one in particular we had to drive about 1h and a half and get to a tiny little town called “Cortes de Arenoso”, the town was extremely small when I asked how many people lived there they told me only 60 do, there is one bakery,one grocery shop,one bar.
By the end of the day I realized how small it was since I saw the people from the bar, in the bakery then in the park, running into the same people over and over again and greeting them each time.
Up the mountain we went, while listening to stories, about back in the day waking up very early to go to school, then taking care of the sheep and having lunch with their friends under a tree, telling stories, playing games to pass the time.
We were heading to a house, a house that had been abandoned for 40 years, on our way the scenery was beautiful and there where abandoned houses everywhere, up here there is no light or water, back then it was candlelit, and the water taken from a well, people started leaving this place to find better opportunities in other places.
The first thing I did when I saw the house was run to see inside, the windows where open, that’s when they asked me if I wanted to go in, and we did, there where still old tools for picking up wheat, old mirrors, wine bottles.
It was so interesting to see how they lived, specially while narrated like this, by someone who lived this way, telling me about how they made their own wine, how in the afternoons in that window up there, the same room where they were born, they would braid their hair, do their homework at candle light.
I could imagine every single thing, it was like going back in time and imagining this place as they told me it once was.
I took bunches of photos, then sadly the card of my camera decided to die, the poor thing has been with me 4 years. And puff! all gone.
Here I am paying attention, with my 2 sweaters and pale as ever.
After getting back, we went past a truffle farm, oh myyyyyyyy!! I just loved this, they told me how the dogs go sniffing around and they tell you where the truffles are, then also learned a little bit about how snails are raised for selling and it is just so interesting, to see the products of each place.
Back in the little town (I wish my camera didn’t died) a great lunch in the bar, and some more conversations with people who have lived there their entire life.
Right before leaving, when saying the goodbyes, I mentioned how I love tiny bitty towns and told Mr.Primitivo about Antigua and how it was also very small and smiled as he told me he wouldn’t change that place for the world.
I can see why.
While some people would just go mad in such a small place, surrounded by mountains, seeing the same people every day, for some reason I think it must be an interesting experience to rent a little room for a month and be in one of these small towns working with nothing to bother you at all, just peace and quiet and fresh air.