This morning I came across a very evocative piece on The New York Times website about the Costa Brava, one of my favourite places in Catalonia.
In this case, I found the author’s admittedly socialist lifestyle and tastes, present throughout the piece, not to be particularly irritating, and thought that, on the whole, she “got” it, as a result of lines like these:
In Llançà we stopped at Platja Grifeu, one of the village’s perfect beaches, with clear tropical-looking water to swim in. At the beachside restaurant, I ordered a tortilla española, the ubiquitous potato omelet of Spain. It was, improbably, the best tortilla I had ever tasted. I savored it, facing the sea and the local families sunning themselves, in this tiny village about 10 miles from the French-Spanish border on a road that looked like nothing more than a scribble on the map.
My parents go to the Costa Brava town of Begur every autumn, and take a break from children, spoiled pets, and the like. They stay in a lovely hotel overlooking the sea, built high on a cliff outside of the town. Their room has a large terrace where they can sit in the sun, read or nap, watch distant ships, and feel something like what I imagine the ancient trading Phoenicians or Greeks who settled in this area must have felt, observing the beauty around them. Though of course, after weeks away, when they return home there are mountains of fallen oak leaves in the front yard to deal with – something with which those trading Phoenicians and Greeks presumably did not have to contend.