Goodies de Espana

My husband lived in Spain for a year and a half after high school and during college. Most of that time he spent in Valencia, with the most wonderful people in Spain–Joaquin y Ana. (The rest of the time he spent with people whose names I will not speak aloud, since they were horrible and mean to my sweetie.)

Although it has been ten years (!) since Miguelito moved out of their apartment, they remain close friends. We spent ten days with them when I was preggers with the Bean, and they spent most of last summer either here with us or driving across the Pacific Northwest.

Anyway. A couple of days ago, we received a package from Joaquin y Ana, by way of Washington. Took a moment to figure that one out (one of their friends brought the package to the U.S. with him and sent it domestic mail, since it weighed a friggin’ ton). And inside–ah! Dark chocolate and 2 liters of Spanish olive oil and saffron and anchovy-stuffed olives and…mmm. Boy, they know me.

For the Bean, there was a kukuxumusu dress. Kukuxumusu, if you have never heard of…it? them? Whatever. Kukuxumusu is a very Spanish “drawing factory”. They have the funniest, most irreverent little drawings, some of which are a bit raunchy as well, so be warned. (My favorite is Little Red Riding Hood kicking the Big Bad Wolf in the groin. I have it on a keychain, and Joaquin y Ana just sent it to me again on the cover of a little notebook.) Bean’s dress is long and magenta, with a fun nature scene covering the bottom 6 inches all the way around. Lots of butterflies and snakes and bugs for my nature girl.

They also sent us tapas dishes–little round terra cotta bowls with flat bottoms. Perfect for olives…and the chorizo- and jamon-flavored potato chips they sent. Alas, no jamon. Those customs officials can be so touchy about uncooked pork!

The coolest part by far were the pictures of Ana dressed up as a fallera! In the spring, Valencians celebrate a festival called Falles, which I am too lazy to explain. Google it. As part of the celebration, young women dress up in very fancy, very heavy, very traditional dresses and present offerings of flowers to the Virgin Mary at the cathedral. Each neighborhood has a whole group of young women, or falleras, that represent it during the procession.

Several years ago, Ana was the fallera mejor, or falles queen, for her neighborhood. And this year, her old neighborhood celebrates its 150th anniversary! So the neighborhood called as many of its past falleras back as it could, and thus, Ana got to wear her gorgeous fallera dress again and walk in procession to the Virgin with her sister and friends and lots, LOTS of other falleras. Once I can get Miguelito to surrender the photo CD, I’ll put a picture of her up here, so you can all admire the resplendent Ana.

UPDATE: here is Ana, muy guapa in her fallera dress:


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One Response to “Goodies de Espana”

  1. Ana Says:

    Beautiful blog, Holly you’re a very good writer. We have got a little car seat for your visit. A fantastic weather started a week ago after a very long winter. Lucky you! Lots of hugs and kisses for you, Miguelito and the Bean.

    P.S. Tell Michael that we already have the game Sorry! (Sorry…)

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