Survival game: How to outlive the Spanish summer

“We’re going to Spain for vacation. Awesome!!!”

Yeah, right. But you didn’t know you’d have to face an unbearable temperature with hot wind blazing on your face like an oven.  Especially if you’re travelling in August, get ready to get roasted like popcorn. Madre mía, hace un calor que te mueres… (Simple translation: the heat is unbearable).That, tourist pamphlets won’t tell you about it. So, Super Nuna is here to save the day!

The following advice also works if you’ve just settled down in the country and are learning the ropes of the local life. (I’m sharing with you all I wished to have been told earlier).

Here are some few things to consider when travelling to Spain in summer:

Schedule your outings to go outside at cooler hours

Want to take a stroll with some friends and enjoy the painting like landscape and its sunlight? No problem at all. You might just want to make sure you either go a bit early in the morning, or in late afternoon. In my town for example, the “most blazing hours” are between 4pm to 6pm more or less, so program your outing consequently to avoid unnecessary heat exposure. Don’t worry, the sun sets late (around 10pm) so you have all the time in the world.

Lower your curtains and close your windows

Yes; as funny as it may sound, that is the best way to keep your house cooler in this country and prevent the hot wind from choking you at home. Like a vampire in a bunker, we live in darkness during day hours and open back everything when the sun sets. Truthfully, this custom was funny to me because I am from a tropical country and there, we rather do the contrary. You have to open the windows as wide as possible… So I was quite skeptical when the locals told me about the closing alternative, and left my windows open. Then I went out of my room to realize that the rest of the flat that was closed up was way cooler… I learnt my lesson.

“Ice age hydration” required

If you’re taking a water bottle, freeze it. It will last longer, and frankly, warm water is not so agreeable to drink when it’s 45°C.

The early bird “cooks” the worm

Cook early in the mornings or in the evenings to avoid accumulating heat in the house. You don’t want to stir a saucepan while feeling dizzy. Like the natives, also include in your diet cold dishes like salad, or gazpacho (etc).

Check the opening hours of your favourite shops

Most shops and establishments reduce their working hours or even close for days. Especially during the month of August, many locals leave their habitual residences to stay at neighbouring towns with mountains and beaches. “Cerrado por vacaciones” (closed for vacation), you might come across that signboard on many doors, so do check the schedule of your favourite shop and prepare in consequence to avoid surprises.

Happy vacations y’all, and see you in my next post!

Nuna Blomevi

It’s not all about paella: discover more dishes from Spanish menus (Part II)

Hola CTTBies! Howdie?

In my last post I began a “profound”  journey, diving into Spanish cuisine. Today we’ll conclude with part II! In this article, we’ll be looking at some common items that are served in restaurants, or eaten at home.

In one of my previous posts, I discussed the Spanish custom of taking  strolls and spending a lot of time outside. I also talked about tapeo, which is going from restaurant to restaurant eating snacks. Because of that, many items on the local menus are designed to be quick, “portable” while remaining delectable.

Common home ingredients or restaurant items

Fideuá

It’s a sort of “pasta version” of paella. I’m personally not too fond of vermicelli in general (because of the texture), but the taste is good!

Huevos rotos

It’s a combination of fried eggs, potatoes and ham. Fun fact: in Spanish, the name means “broken eggs”.

Patatas bravas

Simple yet satisfying, this pommes sautées dish is topped with a colorful, delicious intertwining alliance of aioli sauce and a special, slightly spicy “ salsa brava” (some restaurants use ketchup instead).  It’s a perfect choice for a quick but savory and filling dinner.

Croquetas

Looking cute and lovely, they are crunchy on the outside yet soft, creamy, on the inside . A perfect match!

 They are usually stuffed with ham or mushrooms.

Bocadillos

¡Señoras y señores, más pan! (Ladies and gentlemen, more bread!)

Aside from potatoes, Spaniards eat a lot of baguette as well. Anything that can fit in it is good to go. There are therefore a variety of stuffings: chicken breast, chorizo, bell pepper, etc… Ta-da! A sandwich is born. I love how they are generously filled until they can’t hold it in again; it’s a nice way to show love to customers!

The most baffling combination for me is baguette stuffed with a piece of tortilla de patata (potato omelette)Nice, but too much carbs at once (in my opinion)… Anyway! If it fits in the mouth, then it’s fine.

Calamares rebozados

I love these squid rings. Crispy, stretchy and delicious, they have everything to make me happy.

Just a by-the-way joke: I still remember the day I munched into a similar meal, just to realize they were onion rings. Moral of the story: onion rings and squid rings should not be confused.

Tapas

Tapas is anything that qualifies as a snack (based on the cook’s opinion). The requirement: be small in size.

From mini skewers to battered shrimp, majority of tapas are made of a slice of bread topped up with some salad, or a piece of meat, fish vegetables with some dressing.

Churros

Crunchy and cracky, It is a very common snack sold at any time of the day. On demand, it can be accompanied by a cup of thick, smooth hot chocolate a la taza.

Jamón

The Spanish national treasure that they cannot live (and even leave anywhere) without.

Gazpacho and Salmorejo

Eaten cold, the two following dishes are soups made of blended vegetables (mainly tomatoes, bread, oil and garlic). They’re really popular in summer when the heat wave strikes and one doesn’t feel like cooking with the stove making the house even hotter. Nevertheless, they’re eaten all year long ; they aren’t exclusively summer-specific.

Migas

Made of bread crumbs savored up with some chorizo, they’re one of the specialities of the autonomous community of Aragón.

Arroz con leche

A widely spread dessert, this sweet rice porridge is cooked with milk and flavoured with an exotic touch of cinnamon.

Those that cause international arguments

Queso y vino

Some say the French ones are best, others say the Spanish ones are best. I like both. I consume the product of the country I’m in.  Simple.

Though I must say that French pastry wins over the Spanish one. I said it! Now I’m out.

Take care, and see you in my next post!

Nuna Blomevi

It’s not all about paella: discover more dishes from Spanish menus (Part I)

Hola CTTBies!

It’s time for a new article! Today I’m going to focus on the Spanish cuisine. Just like the title says, paella may somewhat be the most popular dish internationally, but there are other  foods that are very appreciated locally. I divided this first part about the mentioned topic into the three following categories.

Vamos a comer! (Let’s eat)

1. My favorites of all times

Arroz negro

It’s rice made with squid ink and shrimps. Aside from seafood paella, this is my second rice-based recipe. I imagine you might be curious about the taste if you’ve never tried it. Hmmm… How to put it? It’s nothing out of the world, it only tasted very… seafoody. (Sounds like a bad joke, but I’m serious). It’s just the color that is particular. 

Tortilla de patata

Lika a Pacman made with potatoes and eggs fried together (some add onions), forming a cute yellow “cake”, this little guy stole my heart when I first came. It’s quick to cook and goes well with other “side characters” like salad or bread.

Chorizo

Made of pork meat and paprika, This lovely dried sausage goes well with a lot of meals. Sliced in thin rondelles, it comfortably rests down between bread layers for a tasty sandwich.  Diced, it flavors up your soups. At the beginning, I must say that I got highly addicted and suffered from withdrawal syndrome when I was out of Spain (it may be found in supermarkets abroad but nothing beats the local taste). Curiously, I don’t crave it much nowadays because I feel full already when I see lots of it while doing the grocery.

Ensaladilla rusa

Surprise! It’s… potato salad. Despite its foreign name,  this meal has fully settled down in Spanish menus and is often present during informal gatherings. Usual ingredients are potato, olives, tuna, some sausage or york ham covered with tons and tons of mayonnaise. An awesome treat.

Now that we’re done with my favorites, let’s look at the next category. 

2. The meditaranean “quick fixes” that save you when you don’t want to cook

Prickles, prickles and more prickles

Sold in traditional grocery  stores like Martín Martín ,  there is a lot of variety.  Shallots, cucumbers, olives, octopus, anchovies, eels,  shrimps floating in special seasonings and vinegar.  Of course, their canned version also exists in supermarkets but it has less glamour,  so I left that for the end.

3. Those important guests that must not be absent from the table

Baguette 

I’m always amazed about how anxious Spaniards are to make sure there’s bread on the table whenever I eat outside or I get invited for a meal. In restaurants, no matter what you order, they add bread alongside (except for dessert, of course). If you go for lunch and the host forgot to get some, he might get ansty and make you sit to go buy it before he serves.

It’s a tradition I don’t get too much, but well, I adjust myself. I’m a simple woman: I see food, I eat. Bread is food, so I eat it, why not.

Coffee

After eating, your Spanish host or waiter will surely ask you if you’d like some coffee. They usually have it while doing sobremesa, which is sitting at the table and chatting for hours (it’s a bit exaggerated, I confess) while digesting. 

Such a wonderful country…

In my coming article, I will continue with more local dishes in the Spanish menus. Stay tuned! Don’t forget to like and share!

Warm regards and see you in my next post,

Nuna Blomevi

Disclaimer: pictures from the Internet ; no copyright infringements intended

5 reasons to visit Zaragoza, Spain

I’ve always said that among all the sites I’ve ever visited, Zaragoza is that one place that exerts a special unexplainable, magical attraction on people…

It’s a small city , not as well known as Barcelona, Bilbao or Madrid which are the great international poles. But once you come here, you either stay forever, or you end up longing for it wherever you go.

Compared to other places I’ve visited in Europe (here is the link to my travel gallery),  this is where I enjoyed my stay the most and consequently settled in afterwards. Here come the 5 reasons why!

1- It is a small town where the life cost is ereally low compared to other Spanish locations. Yet it has everything with everything you need: shops, entertainment, banks and food, etc.

2- The lifestyle rhythm here is more relaxed so the  level of stress the reduced compared to bigger European metropolis.

3- The town is extremely clean and there is less pollution.

4-  People are nice, easygoing and they take the time to attend to you when you need help, for example while asking for direction in a street.

5-  It has a unique culture, where medieval , mediteranean and modern trends blend in perfectly,  creating a special touch. You definiyely won’t be bored; there’s always something new to do or a new place to discover!

It’s a hidden gem, waiting for your visit. Cariño, cuándo te vienes? (Darling, when are you coming?)

See you in my next post!

Nuna Blomevi.

#ZaragozaEnamora #ZaragozaMakesYouFallInLove

For more photos of places Nuna has visited, please click here: Travel Gallery

Some of the photos are avalaible thanks to the courtesy of my friend S. I. (She took them during our strolls). Gracias por las increíbles imágenes, amiga! (Thanks for these incredible visuals, friend!)

We’re back!

Hola Cttbies!

I hope you’re doing well. Long time no write!

I’m glad to announce that I’ve returned to posting again. The past weeks have been somewhat hectic, but I managed to pull through by God’s grace.

Hence, I’ll be posting again on the website about my favourite topics: writing as a rookie author, and my stay in Spain. Also, why not, about special topics that draw my attention as I meditate about life.

On the other hand, the design of the website has changed. I modified the theme,  some colours and the font with the purpose of making it simpler, easier to read and browse through. I hope it is offering a better user experience. For any technical issues, please feel free to message me via this link!

I can’t conclude without saying a very big thank you for your patience and for staying in touch! Especially since June is a special month for me. Indeed, I decided to start blogging and officially launched this website a year ago, on the 5th June 2020. It hasn’t been easy. I have learnt a lot all this while. All your visits, readings and likes have been of great encouragement to me. I am grateful! I’m still a bit clumsy and in the process of learning, but I will keep improving and getting better.

Once again, a very big thank you!

Un abrazo fuerte! (Hugs)

Nuna Blomevi.

Spring and Window Shopping in Spain: Malls and Fashion trends

Hola Cttbies!

¿Qué tal? (How are you?)

It’s spring! (At long last). The weather is great here (an average of 20°C). The spring breeze is so sweet here, and the birds chirp so beautifully during the day!

On the other hand, it’s also good if you’d like to have a quiet trip, because there is less touristic affluence and hassle. I must say, the best months to visit Spain are March to early June, or September to mid November.  In summer it’s too hot, especially in August the temperature goes up to 40°C , and there blows a hot wind from the desert that is completely unbearable; in December to January it’s too cold and windy, not the best time either. All year long, it’s like the god of fire and the god of ice fight all year long in Zaragoza.

Busking at Paseo IIndependencia, one of the main streets in Zaragoza’s town center.

From 24°C to 11°C on the same day,  Spring is the time of what I call “quitaipón de ropa” (remove and wear clothes). Temperatures in my town are very unstable, with very high differences in intervals. at one moments you’re sweating buckets and at another, you’re freezing. The wind here (the infamous “Cierzo”) is mortal so you can catch a cold if you let your guard off.  It’s advised to take a light coat with you even if you don’t end up wearing it. Yesterday on my way home, I couldn’t walk properly because the Cierzo kept pushing me from behind. That’s how strong it is!

When the weather gets warm like this, I feel like I’m reviving after a long slumber. I’m in a good mood nowadays, and so are many others, seeing how the streets are busy with plenty of people. The covid 19 incidences have lowered so the authorities lessened the restrictions.

What a better way to celebrate than to go to window shopping or visit a mall?

I am mostly working from home nowadays, so every chance to go out is fine. I met up with a friend and we paid a visit to Puerto Venecia, the most beautiful shopping center in Zaragoza. Built in 2012, it caught the hearts of thousands of buyers and even caused the death of one of its predecessors, Plaza Imperial Mall, which was deserted. Puerto Venecia is bigger, more beautiful, closer in distance and even has a pond with Koi fishes. Sorry, you can’t beat that. The other malls luckily survived because they’re close to the town center and, very importantly, because one can’t go to the same mall all the time. We humans need variety…

This time, I only went window shopping because the economy is kind of low (Ahem). My heart was breaking as I saw all those beautiful things from afar… But still, I had a lot of fun. Actually, I’ve never laughed so much at clothes in my life. The fashion here is a bit peculiar, usually a lot of colours with a touch of eccentricity. Trend wise here, youth clothing is gradually turning Kpop-inspired or anime-inspired. It seems kanjis and dragons are in season. and nowadays, teens here are into colourful bob cuts or “anime skirts” (my bad, I don’t know the exact name).

In the perpetual quest for creativity, some brands went a bit overboard this year. I took some pictures of the clothing I found the most bizarre… Ahem… striking (pictures below). After a long, harsh year, maybe they’re trying to lift our mood… I’ll just take it that way. I just hope they’re confortable to wear…

Is it Spring where you live as well? How is it in your country?

Warm regards, and wishing you a wonderful week!

Lady Justice and Lady Liberty: law, relativism and power struggles

Si, dans le nombre infini de choses qui sont dans ce livre, il y en avait quelqu’une qui, contre mon attente, pût offenser, il n’y en a pas du moins qui y ait été mise avec mauvaise intention. Je n’ai point naturellement l’esprit désapprobateur. ” Charles de Montesquieu, Préface “De L’Esprit des Lois”

If, among the infinite number of things that are in this book, there be any which, against my will, happens to offend, there is , however, none mentioned with a bad intention. It is not in my nature to be a disapproving person.” (NBPT: Nuna’s Personal Translation)

Today’s meditations brought me to the area of law and personal freedom. I enjoy reflecting on serious topics, but adding to it a pinch of humor.

My recent meditations brought me to cogitate over the concept of law. First, I wrote a previous article on storytelling and politics, then on power and influence , now I am drawn to talk about law and liberty. Mercy…nowadays,  I feel too rapidly compelled into adulthood …

Ultimately, I hear a lot on TV, the Internet and on the news a great mention of different topics related to freedom. Everybody is giving their opinion about what should be done or not, and sometimes there are so many different opinions about the same issue (my head hurts a lot because some say “do this”, others say “don’t”, it’s confusing).

It made me reflect on the notion of freedom in general, and on the role of the law in the regulation of society.  “Can Lady Justice and Lady Liberty be friends?“, I asked myself.

To understand better the concepts of law and liberty, let’s retrace them back  to the notion of good and evil and to the concept of authority.

1- The notion of “good and evil”

Human beings are social creatures bound to share time, space and resources within a community. There are things we want to do, and things we don’t want to do, and we wished we were free to live according to what we want. However, the acts posed by one person may affect another. In order to regulate society, the law was created, and actions were defined under the notions of “good” and “bad/ evil”.

The morality of an act and its level of  gravity can be measured based on various variables. For example; the circumstance in which it was committed, the level of the damage incurred and the intention behind it. For example, killing someone with premeditation isn’t dealt with in the same way as self-defense. Stealing food isn’t the same as robbing a bank.

Personally, I define “doing wrong to someone” as an act caused towards an individual that resulted in causing them a sort of damage. It may be physical, emotional, or related to material properties. Doing good, on the contrary, is posing an act that will bring the receiver some contentment or benefits.

Both “good” and “evil” can vary in levels; they can increase or decrease. Something or someone can be described as “very bad” or “very good”, or also “not so bad” or “not so good”.

A “punishment” can be applied to keep people in check by letting them know that something not very pleasant, or something painful will happen to them if they don’t follow the law. A “reward” is the opposite, it is a pleasurable return on an action committed.

On a macro level, the Law (a set of rules) is a summary of the most recurrents crimes (acts that cause a high level of damage) and the corresponding punishment that a certain society has agreed to apply to it. Those rules are based on morals, values and principles that govern a particular community. For example, some countries apply death penalty for certains crimes while other nations considered that no life should be terminated, so they rather applying a life sentence . In some past civilizations, they cut your hand if they caught you stealing. Nowadays, you will go to jail or pay a fine.

On a micro level, the term “law” can also be related to the set of rules that govern a household or an individual’s life.

2- The concept of authority

The concept of authority has always existed. It is the strength that enforces the law and can manifest in different forms. For example, parents have authority over their children, a boss over his employee at work, or a president over a country.

When two voices are raised against each other, the louder one silences the other. As the stronger voice leads, those who agree with it are happy and those who don’t… have no choice but to submit (or rebel, and wait in silence until the opportunity comes to overthrow the leading voice).

In the hand of humans, power takes turns.  (That’s why we humans are jealous of God and wished we were deities, because only He gets to do what he wants).

On a macro level: to save society from drowning into chaos, the world needs a strong figure that will superimpose its supremacy on other opinions. In the contrary case, it will be morselled and each part will constantly be clashing, one trying to overthrow the other. It doesn’t only refer to gunshots and bombing. It can also refer to“unrest”, the absence of peace. It’s a natural human need to seek for a leader, “someone who can show the way”. In our relativist era, I wonder who will be able to assume that position now… Our modern society teaches us that we’re all free to think and do what we want. However, it is impossible to accept every single opinion. The majority’s voice will always prevail…

so that kind of backfired on keeping order.

3- Lady Perspective: a friend or a foe?

If we follow the logic that it’s a free world, then why does the law exist? We should all be able to do what we want. Well, the law exists to establish limits to our actions and to ensure that we cohabitate peacefully with each other. However, it has the unique but great flaw that it can be modified at will: either, the principles behind it become obsolete, or when one has enough power to bend it. The Law is therefore directly linked to authority, and is one of the main causes of all power struggles and society uprisings, summarised in a nutshell: “You dn’t agreed with a verdict? Then get enough pwer to shift the tables and overrule it”.

The law can be altered at will according to the changes in opinions, perspectives and other variables that are relevant to each society (and personal gains of influential individuals). Even more, power dictates a lot in whether a law will be passed or not. The stronger opinion gets to have the law it wants approved, and if those against are weaker, they have no choice but to submit. The tables keep changing as power also changes hands.

The current society has taught us that we were free to do whatever we wanted to do (that’s what some higher ups said to compel our votes during the electoral campaigns). However, that grand promise has come to backbite them, because they didn’t tell the second part of the concept of freedom. I enjoy very much this particular quote in French that expresses it pretty well : “La liberté des uns s’arrête là où commence celle des autres”, meaning: “One’s freedom ends where others’ freedom begins” (NPT: Nuna’s Personal Translation).

Nowadays, when the people of law want to punish them, a common justification is: “It is my belief. We live in a free country, so I have the right to do what I want, and you must respect my choices”. I’m not sure why, but I’m hearing that excuse a lot nowadays… As long as the action done doesn’t harm anyone, probably. But if not, then there’s a problem.

For example, I saw on the news, that some folks organised a party to celebrate the New Year with about 500 people gathered in a closed place, with no mask, in the middle of this Covid pandemic . In the name of liberty, should their celebration be permitted? or in the name of law and the greater good, should they be sanctioned?

This is just one example out of many others.

Phew… Lady Justice and Lady Liberty must be having a hard fight up wherever they are. “The law was supposed to maintain order in society. Now we are told that every opinion is valid and we are all free to think and do what we want. Then, if the law is an impediment to liberty, why does the law still exist? ”

In conclusion… our world is a free world, but at the time, it’s not. It’s all about reaching the proper balance.

Oh, charismatic leader who will subdue chaos and at the same time ensure the freedom of all, the world is waiting for you…

I’m out for now… See you in my next post!

Forever meditating and forever overthinking,

Nuna Blomevi.

Sources consulted (click on the word to follow the link):

defintion of “law” and liberty

5 reason to abolish death penalty

New Year party

A letter to my older-self: age well

They don’t have all the answers, but at least there are certain things that they know better”.

In my culture,  we are taught from childhood to respect our elders, for they are great sources of wisdom. As I grew older, I came to understand that even more. (I am a lovely woman who is between 20 to 30 years old, hehe).

Since I live alone abroad, I don’t have any family members I can interact directly with as much as I wished. Lately, I had the idea to search on Youtube for influencers who were 60 years old and above. I am usually brilliant (I don’t mean to boast) but that was one of the best ideas that ever came to my mind. I highly recommended it, especially if you’re a long-term planner like me. Who can give us better heads up about life than those who lived a little longer?

Of course, young people have fresher ideas that are more up to date with their times, and old people don’t always have it all figured out. Some of them might have even failed us or didn’t leave a good exemple. In any case, I like learning from whoever I can learn something good from, be they young or old. Kids are innocent, youngsters are passionate and  innovative, and older people have experience.

On the other hand, I made myself a little chart summarizing certain things I observed about life. They might not be completely accurate, but I found them interesting.

0- 25~30 years old: the time needed to learn about life as much as you can (theorical and practical knowledge) and prepare for adulthood . Trial and error are still allowed somehow and more easily forgivable.

30-60 years old : time to implement what you learnt and work to save money to prepare for your retirement. Try to avoid major life mistakes. If you mess up too big, you’re screwed cause you have less lifetime to turn things around (depending on what you got yourself entangled into).

60- 100 ~ deathday: time to start thinking about how you’ve lived so far, and to try to making up for some mistakes you’ve made. The body starts failing more around this age and it makes you more conscious that you won’t be on earth forever.

Yes, I am that atypical young lady who says we should listen to our parents. I still remember two good advices mine gave me,which saved me a lot of headaches.

First: do not fall for just any guy who tells you you’re beautiful and that he likes you.

Second: Never get tired of doing good to those around you. Your kindness will come back to you, one way or the other.

Mom, Dad, thanks for those heads-up. I haven’t been on Earth for so long, but I’ve lived long enough to experience how accurate those tips are…

By the way; a common mistake we make as young people is to think that we won’t grow old.

One of the worst days of my life was when I  woke up one morning, went to the bathroom and got the shock of my life when I looked into the mirror. “Who is this?

My reflection looked so mature that I thought I had seen a stranger. I wondered if that face was due to lack of sleep, or if my skin lacked hydration. The following days, I tried to sleep better, and I also got some face creams. But… it was in vain.

Then, when I got on the bus or walked on the streets, I started paying more attention to older people. Skin spots, cracks, wrinkles, I discreetly observed a lot. That’s when I understood what was happening to me. “I see… so, this is what it means to start growing old…”. I was shocked, and angry as well (not towards anybody in particular…) because I wasn’t prepared for this.

In regard to this week’s meditation, I felt inspired to write a letter directed to my older self. I should check it when I turn 60, haha.

Zaragoza, 19th March 2021.

Dear older me,  

If humans are said to live up to about 100 years, I am about a quarter far on the road of life. I am still young, yet my eyes have seen and understood more things than the peers of my age who are still innocently carefree, merry and jolly. I grew up being the youngest  in most of the social circles I belonged to. Thus, I have had the privilege to learn from their stories instead of having to go through certain experiences myself. I learn from older people as much as I can whenever I have a chance,  I hope it’ll help me avoid unnecessary  mistakes and pave a softer way to make my future life better. What better way is there than to listen to advice from someone who has walked on earth longer than I and seen more things than I will ever catch up to? Of course, they aren’t always right and don’t have all the answers, but what they have to say does make the life of us youngsters better. If only we cared to take heed. Sadly, On the other hand, the elderly’s health gets weaker and weaker, sometimes preventing them from teaching as much as they wished. Also,  youth is blinded by passion and vigor,  and they think they can take on and conquer the world based on that alone.

I have a young body, but the heart of an old lady. It sometimes makes me stand out among my peers, and my sermonings makes them uncomfortable at times. I either sound too known or too holier-than thou.Yet, I do not regret at all, and I cherish my way of life. It is not my aim to sound lofty. I simply desire to have answers, to know the way, and to gain wisdom. That is the best way to live comfortably here on this earth.

I don’t have great ambitions. I simply wish to live comfortably, and help those in needs, within my possibilities.

By the way; it seems that the romantic quest finding a life partner and the professional endeavour to secure a stable job to make a decent living is what keeps us young people busy and gives us purpose. Now that you’re 60, you’ve probably achieved those, or given up. In any case, what are you focusing on? What is driving you through the days? I hope you’ve not falling to the excuse that you’re old and can’t do much. I hope you’re still living to the fullest and staying active. I’m sure there are still things you can do.

So tell me, dear old me; With all the lessons I learnt through the years, are you living a better life? Have you achieved your goals? What stage of your life have you reached? And this one is to make fun of you: how is your frantic and ferocious battle against wrinkles going?

I’m sometimes scared about how I’ll look when I grow old and my body starts to decay. But, for the sake of my own peace- and yours, I have reached a certain level of acceptance; there’s nothing we can do about the passing of time. And also, I want to stop worrying about what hasn’t happened yet. Ever more, lately I’ve been seeing a lot of beautiful older women, and it reassured me that even though our body changes, one can look good at any age. I was greatly encouraged.

Therefore, I’ve decided to not be afraid of aging and live in anxiety, worried about how I’ll look when I grow old. I’ve resolved to be confident about myself and look my best no matter what age I reach. I’ll grow to be a cute, delight-looking granny. So, I’ll take care of our body, keep fit and eat healthy.

I’m not in a hurry to meet you… But see you in some few decades.

Warm regards,

Your younger self.”

This marks the end of today’s post. What are some of the good pieces of advice that have marked you? Do you think the gap between generations is an obstacle or a blessing?

And if you’re facing the same worries as me, I hope this post brought you a little comfort.

Forever overthinking,

Nuna Blomevi.

Spanish ravishing strolls: discovering the city of Zaragoza

Hola CTTBies!

I hope we are all doing well, and that we’re all safe!

In today’s post I will be sharing more about an important aspect of Spanish social life: the art of taking strolls. I’m also taking you on a visual tour of Zaragoza, the town were I live!

In a previous post, I mentioned that Spaniards spend a lot of time in social interactions, and therefore, it’s very common to come across “improvised hangouts”. It does not necessarily refer to parties or meetings over meals. Spaniards also spend a lot of time outside their flats, walking, chatting or just having fresh air. Their cities are designed for that purpose. For example, in my town Zaragoza, there are a lot of public spaces of various sizes: parks, squares, green spaces or playgrounds between buildings. There are always public benches on every street. You can see families with kids, lovey-dovey couples, young people chatting with their friends, eating snacks or listening to music, or old people getting fresh air. It was really funny for me to that even the University’s park is visited for the same purposes and even to walk their dogs. 

They also go for “tapeo” which is going from bar to bar eating “tapas” (snacks or hors d’œuvre) and having a drink.

On weekends, after church, I like walking home. I sometimes take a detour to enjoy the view. There are days when my  friends tag along. We walk, enjoy the view, sit or squat somewhere for a while, there continue wherever our feet lead us too. If we’re hungry, we go to any supermarket nearby and grab some snacks to keep us company. My town is small and very safe, so we stay out until our legs give out (before Covid-19 started, sometimes till 1 or 2 am ).

There’s always something new to discover, or things that capture our attention… We have a local saying here: “Zaragoza te enamora” (Zaragoza makes you fall in love). Indeed, I have been here for years, but it is constantly fascinating.

After the Filomena snowstorm left us covered in white, San Valero’s strong wind gushes nearly blew us away, and now… Valentine came with love in its wings. The weather is pretty more merciful these days. We’re transitioning to spring so the average max. temperature is 14°C.

As it’s getting warmer and warmer, talking strolls around the city becomes even more agreeable. It is pure goodness to see the trees bloom and to feel the sweet rays of the sun slowly warming up… I love Spanish Spring very much, I feel like I‘m reviving after the harsh winter.

I know it’s still far, but as the tropical bird that I am, I can’t wait for summer to come.

Warm regards,

Nuna Blomevi.

“Expo” Zone

Valdesparterra” and “Arcosur” residential areas

I recorded traces of the Filomena snowstorm on my Youtube channel

To love… or not to love: how much of myself do I invest in others?

Happy couple, happy family. Happy family, happy society. Happy society, happy world! 

Rewind… First of all, how do we get to the happy couple stage? 

Backstory: I was comparing today’s pre-marriage processes with how it was done in other eras. People of the past used to investigate and carefully select the family of the bride or the groom before choosing a spouse for their children. Education, heath, values, and morals, they checked every detail they deemed necessary. They knew well that every individual comes with their own background, and what they bring with them affects marriage life and even their future children.

Nowadays, people choose based on “tingles in the chest” or “heartthrobs”. Anecdotally, I’ve heard in a K-drama that it takes only 3 secs to fall in love. Well, it’s possible. However, for a relationship to last, it will take more than just butterflies in your stomach. 

 1- Love: From us to others

 At first, dating was a “preliminary process” where lovers met for different activities to know each other better. In modern times, falling in love seems to not be the only reason why couples are formed.

The original purpose seems to be disappearing. People look more focused on choosing a person they deem cool to hang out with, share meals, exchange gifts, have fun and entertain themselves. 

Peer pressure in schools sometimes pushes young people to date because it’s “ trendy” and they don’t want to be the odd one out. It’s “cool” to have a boyfriend/girlfriend, a.k.a “your special person that is special to you and that treats you specially as well. You don’t have one? Bummer”.

On the other hand, society teaches us how to impress others by looking good, kissing good and developing our attractiveness etc… But…  it hardly teaches how to genuinely care.

One time, I heard an interesting reflection that has left me quite impacted. It tells about how we make our list of requirements: how we want them to look like, what we expect them to do for us etc… It’s not a bad thing. Nonetheless; as we set the bar so high for others… What do we have to offer them?

That hit me… I immediately reexamined my standards. I resolved to improve daily as a person, in accordance with the qualities I would ideally like to receive.

Why are you attracted to the person you like? Is it a “heart tingle”, “butterflies”, “trend”? Or are you genuinely in love with them, and you want to be by their side to make them happy? Introspect in your heart and check your motives… 

2- Love: From others  to us

Humans beings are complex and constantly changing. There is no fixed formula to handle social relations, and there is no way to fully grasp who a person really is. Your loved one may try to “fix themselves” for you; however, their nature might be stronger and more unmoveable than you think. Old habits die hard. Make sure that at least the majority of what you perceive or know about them is not fake.

When you allow somebody in your life, you are investing your time, your body, your mind, your heart, YOURSELF. Be sure that the person receiving is worth it. Enquire about everything you WANT to know and NEED to know about them. Check what you’re getting yourself into, and ask yourself: “Can I bear with this for the rest of my life?”

Anytime you see something that you consider a red alert, don’t ignore the signs. It might come back to bite you later. Love with your eyes open! Don’t lose yourself to someone else. You’ve got only one life to live, so take care of yourself and choose what’s good for you. What is healthy for your body and your mind.

In a nutshell… Love yourself, and also love others. Loving oneself is different from being selfish, and loving others doesn’t mean they should prosper at the cost of you. It’s all about balance.

Also remember: Love is not a feeling, it is a decision.

Happy Valentine’s day!

Forever overthinking and forever meditating,

Nuna Blomevi.