Welcome to my blog. A special welcome if you are not me. If you are a member of my family or one of my friends, judge me kindly. If you are none of that lot, then an even greater welcome, though you must be lost.

We made it, we’re on holiday, we fucked up the booking and were en-route to Alicante with nowhere to stay, but after some messages and calls we have found ourselves in our favourite quiet spot in Les Deveses not far from the beach, in a casa that the new owners had no plans for renting, and we are very grateful that a bunch of unlikeliness fell together, perfectly. It’s familiar, unadventurous, thirty-eight degrees Celsius, I’m under a friendly palm in the company of my girls and a handful of other holidaymakers. This urbanisation is owned by a bunch of retired firefighters from Seville, and they know what’s what. They won the lottery with a syndicate waaay back and had it built to their dream specifications. A bit of a hectare of the stuff that passes for grass here, with a pool at one end and low-rise dwellings on two sides. It’s about the space, and it is friendly, uncrowded, you often get the pool to your family, but not always, but it is always social. When we (unexpectedly) arrived we got a bunch of ‘Hola’s from the elderly residents, the ones who see it all, the firefighters and their families, we don’t chat that much as there is a bit of a language barrier, but I think we understand each other. I guess they are getting older, these ex-heroes, there used to be more of them, middle-aged men, once fit but slightly looser in retirement, a close-knit gang with such Spanish machismo, so much hairy tanned skin and loud genial arguments, foreign but familiar. I miss them as they apparently dwindle in numbers, their children and grandchildren are friendly but less ebullient. And here I am, in the space that they curate, laying, looking up at this familiar palm, with a familiar sun roasting my pale parts. The palm next to me is the Clock Palm, we tell the time by its shadow. It’s usually gin o’clock though. Love it here…