Summer holidays are undeniably linked to Spain in our family. We left a piece of our heart in Madrid when we moved on to Lugano in December of 2006 and have been coming back here every year since.
The Expat Exodus is when you travel back to your home town/country for the long summer holidays which in our case happens to be Spain. Full house would be the most appropriate definition of our life-style here but I like to call it home.
The kids' friends come for sleepovers the day we arrive, the neighbours turn up at our doorstep with margaritas in hand to welcome us home (yes, they know me well!), birthdays are celebrated and girlfriends' reunion lunches organized (with lots of pink cava flowing!), friends and family come to visit from Switzerland, Italy, Sweden and England. Even the gardner was happy to see us again and brought us a big platter of his wife's home-made couscous yesterday! We were ten people at the table and camp beds were pulled out later that day to accommodate all the friends who wanted to stay into the wee hours of the night. My Italian mother-in-law tells me it feels like a family hotel.
Kids know that the breakfast buffet is open between 10am and 1pm, however, no one is allowed to sleep past midday. Lunch is light and home-made and served around 3pm. True to Spanish style dinner is not before 10pm. We all gather the chairs around the wooden table on the terrace at the end of the day when the heat decreases and temperatures invite us to stay up late enjoying good company, scrumptious food and refreshing drinks.
So, when I go off for a run before dinner it not just for the exercise, it is to give thanks for all the lovely moments in life I have been blessed with.