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This year as the result of a fortuitous wedding invitation we embraced the idea of spending the last week of the financial year working remotely in the quaint village of Vejer de la Frontera, in Andalusia, Spain. Our Air BnB was at the highest point of the whitewashed village which itself was perched on a hilltop, with stunning panoramic views of the surrounding landscape and the nearby Atlantic Ocean. The village’s architectural charm reflected its Moorish and Spanish influences and despite a strong cultural scene with art galleries, craft shops, and traditional artisan workshops, the village was far enough off the beaten track to avoid large tourist numbers.
“Perched on a hilltop” is amazing when you are kicking back with a cup of tea surveying the landscape, however several times I made the mistake of leaving the hilltop. Once was an early morning run in search of the sunflower fields I could see on the horizon, 3km straight uphill on the return is no fun in any language. Another time I hired a mountain bike and rode to the coast at Cape Trafalgar (the site of the Battle of Trafalgar 1805) this time conquering the hilltop in the heat of day.
The south of Spain gets very hot in the summer and air conditioning is a rarity, you soon understand why the siesta starts after lunch and doesn’t appear to end until around 8pm. Around this time the locals emerge from behind their heavy wooden doors, plonk themselves in an outdoor bar, beer in one hand, cigarette in the other contemplating the idea of what’s for dinner at 11pm.
We soon learned to adapt our patterns and it kinda worked given we were trying to work during Australian Eastern Standard Time Zone.