Weeks eight and nine – An Albarracin Christmas

This will be our last post about Albarracin, i don’t think we really wanted to leave, but the sub-zero nights and the relentlessly burly climbing has taken its toll, so moving on was the best choice. We’ve already decided to come back for a week or two on our way to Barcelona, so we won’t be gone for long! 

Anyway, these were our last two weeks of 2016, and they were really great. In the last few days we both managed to get some good climbing done, although we both left with projects that we really need to finish, so a return trip is essential.

Before we arrive Beth and myself were bouldering at V1/V2 and V4/V5 respectively. During our time in Albarracin Beth has managed countless V2’s around 8-9 V3’s and has about 5 V4 projects which are super close to being done. As for me I’ve done 9 V5’s and 9 V6’s which I’m really pleased with. I didnt really spend much time trying anything harder, maybe on the next visit.

Overall we’re both a lot stronger now, Beth even has something that resembles proper bicepts now. In terms of a bouldering destination is really is up there with font, might even be better in my opinion, but I’m waiting til we go back again at the end of the trip to confirm that rather large claim.

I’ve had a few people ask what having Christmas day in the van was like, unfortunately I’ve not been able to give an answer as we spent almost no time in the van at all on the day. Our friends Miia and Emil had an apartment for a week or so, as they had family visiting, but on Christmas day it was just them, so they let us stay the night and use the kitchen to cook as close to a proper British Christmas dinner as is possible.

The cooking part was a pretty successful, we had a roast chicken, roast potatoes, carrots, peas, sweet corn and most importantly gravy. It seemed to go down really well, everyone went back for seconds, and at one point Emil had the entire chicken carcass on his plate looking for any remaining scraps. 

The apartment they had was really nice, albeit crazily decorated with axes hanging above the beds in one room, we slept in the other room. Two double rooms, both with ensuites, a decent lounge/dining area and a separate kitchen. The contents of the kitchen were perhaps a little sparse. There was just enough of everything, pretty much four of everything in fact which wasn’t too much of a problem, but the lack of baking trays were an issue. There was only a drip tray and some glass tray like thing. Combining these with some tin foil construction resulted in exactly what we needed to get the job done, which was lucky! 

On new years eve we’d heard that the locals get together in the town Square to see in midnight, so we headed up there about 11:30, Beth wearing nearly every layer she owns and found around ten people in the square, not what we were expecting. Within 15 mins the square was full of people, children, families, young people all having a drink and waiting for 12. At midnight the place went deadly silent, apparently the tradition is to eat 12 grapes within the times the bells chime, so 12 seconds, which was great to watch, we only wished we’d brought some too! After we had a toast with Emil Miia and Emil’s family and the music started from the speakers in the square. At first playing Spanish music we all had a dance to but that quickly changed to the YMCA and Ricky Martin, everybody was dancing and having a great time, turned out to be one of the best new years we’d had. 


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