The Situation in Spain

Monday 11 May. 51% of Spain moved on to Phase 1 of the exit of the lockdown. Of the 8 provinces of Andalusia, 2 stayed in Phase 0: Malaga (where we used to live) and Granada (where we live now). This decision was met with a lot of criticism. The province of Malaga is home to the Costa del Sol, one of the most popular regions in Spain. And tourism is one of the biggest sources of income (and not only in the province of Malaga).

Here in Iznalloz – a small town to the north of the city of Granada – reactions were very negative as well. Indeed, so negative that the Ayuntamiento (municipality) had to publish an official statement on their Facebook page declaring that it was not them who had taken this decision. The reason for this outrage was simple: in Iznalloz the number of infections was/is very low. And people felt they were punished for no reason at all.

To be honest, Lars and I were disappointed as well. Sunday 10 May was my birthday and we had hoped to go to a bar the day afterward. But no such luck… We knew we had to do something so as not to feel depressed…

The Pre-Festivities

In my opinion, you always feel better when you have something nice to drink and eat. So, we started our pre-festivities on Friday evening with a BBQ. Steak, French fries, salad, and a bottle of red wine. Maybe this sounds like a simple meal for you… But ever since we came to Spain, we have been having trouble finding a nice steak! Was it the quality of meat? Not sure, since pork and chicken tend to be tastier here than in Belgium. Was it the cut of meat? Probably.

Anyway, the butcher in one of our local supermarkets had exactly what we had been yearning for. The feeling to have a good steak again after 2 years was… indescribable. I was so overwhelmed that I forgot to take pictures.

And on Saturday, yours truly had an excellent Belgian abbey beer. Also available in our local supermarkets.

See that look on my face? Pure happiness!

The Birthday Itself

Sunday. The day started like this:

Rain. And lots of it! Didn’t do much during the day, just streaming movies. And watching paranormal videos on YouTube.

I had come up with a special menu: healthy, cheap, tasty, and easy to make! For once, I was not the cook.

This is a Viking who cooks. With a glass of cava, of course.

The starter was a simple classic: melon with ham. I am not so much a fan of watermelon, but I do love honey melon!

Only 2 ingredients, but so delicious. Melon could have been a bit riper. By the way, we only ate half of it that evening, the rest ended up in a fruit salad with bananas and oranges.

The main dish featured an Italian specialty: polpettes. Italian meatballs!

Yes, I know, Lars is a messy cook.

Empty bottle of cava in the background…

Meatball, slice of tomato, and mozzarella. A couple of minutes in the oven. Served with rice mixed with grated Parmesan cheese and capers.

Strawberry ice cream for dessert.

Presentation is not The Viking’s strong point…

Lars the barman, about to mix whiskey and cola.

And… last but not least: this Monday, Malaga, and Granada finally move on to Phase 1. I hope the bars in Iznalloz are ready for us…

Bye for now and see you somewhere next week!


  1. sad situation in Malaga and Granada dear to me as many friends there and honorary member of the peñas or supporters group of Real Madrid CF ::)


  2. The economy here is totally tourism too but it’s madness to open the floodgates so soon. We need to see how it goes locally first. And you didn’t go hungry 🙂 🙂


  3. I just had my bday too, my first bday in covid times. Since we couldn’t have big celebration, we had an online party with the kids joining via zoom. Happy bday, friend!


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