It Was a Very Good Year

It is December 31, and I thought I’d take a moment or two to look back on the year 2012- and what a year it was!

We began the year with and intimate dinner at La Fórcola, one of our favorite restaurants.

This was followed a few days later with my birthday celebration, surround by friends and complete with an Arroz con Bogavante at Carosel.

Ofelia and ZahavaArroz con Bogavante

Then it was time to join the celebration of Pepe’s 50th birthday at La Cuchara Mágica.

And if that weren’t enough we ended our month in Pedreguer with Pepe’s family and a traditional puchero.

 

Pepe´s family

February we joined Ofelia at La Matandeta in celebration of her birthday.

We enjoyed the magic and antics of Jandro.

February brought bit sadness at the passing of my father at 94.  While we will miss him, how wonderful that we had so many years to enjoy him and that he was in good mental and physical health until end.

March, of course, was filled with Las Fallas and a wonderful visit by our daughter, Rachel.

 

The Ever Delightful Rachel

A quick trip to the beach to toival the pots and pan and we were set to cook for our kosher daughter.

The Mercado Central provided all the food items she needed. She loved Valencia and will be back for a visit.

April was the wedding of our good friends Ramon and Juan Diego.  We have known Ramon for nearly 20 years and were delighted to be able to attend this very special event.

Marty and Ramon

Virginia Sampere

We also got a chance to catch up with old friends from the Institute International Sampere.  I also did my first restaurant blog on our neighborhood restaurant A Nou.

In May we found ourselves giving serious thought as to where our  home would be.  Maintaining two homes seems silly in that we were spending most of the year in Valencia.  It was decided that in July we would return to Los Angeles and sell our condo, our cars and furniture.    I began the search for a larger apartment and we contacted our realtor in Los Angeles to begin the process of selling our home.  Marty celebrated his birthday among friends at Carosel as we sat on the terrace and had yet another great meal prepared by Jordi.

I interviewed Mike and Santi and wrote about their restaurant Ginger Loft.

Mike

June I did two restaurant interviews and photo shoots for the blog – Carosel and La Comisaria-Tapas y Copas Ilegales.

Jordi Morera of Carosel

 

Eddie of La Comisaria

My friends from Pilates Class introduced me to the Mercado de Jerusalén.

July we moved into our new apartment.  I fell in love with it on first sight.  The kitchen alone would have convinced me I had to live there.

We celebrated the 4th of July  at the home of Linda Casanovas.

Dressed in red, white and blue for the occasion

And,  with our very ample apartment we were able to entertain our friends from Westridge days.  Hillary and her son as well as Juliet spent several days with us.

Juilet

The month ended with Melanie and Andrew, also from Westridge, bringing a student group to Valencia.  We had several opportunities to visit with them and their adorable sons, Tommy and Robbie.  We ended our month with a great Jazz concert at Jimmy Glass.

Melanie and Robbie

August found us in LA, getting rid of things we could leave behind, packing things we couldn’t live without and trying to sell our house.  Sorry, no pictures, too busy packing.  I did continue with the Dynamic Advantage Strength Training and my frequent walks with Mary.  It was also a good time to catch up with friends.  At the end of August Rachel came to visit.

In September, Rachel and I drove back to Boulder together where I would help get a few things organized.

On the way to Boulder

Rachel making sure we had enough gas to make it to Boulder

I then went on to Nevada City to spend some time with my family.  It was a great way to relax before the final push before we returned to Spain.

Brother Bob enjoying a glorious day

 

The last week of September our worldly goods were picked up and shipped, we closed on the sale of our condo, and our furniture and two cars were sold.  We packed our few remaining belongings in our suitcases and checked into the Westin Pasadena for a couple days’ rest before starting our journey home to Valencia.

October we got settled in.  A few days after our arrival we hopped a train to Madrid to catch our friend Jorge Blass in his latest magic show.

We also got a chance to see Ramon and Juan Diego.   Back in Valencia, Nacho treated us to a homemade  Arroz al Horno.

Arroz al Horno

We began the month of November with an excursion to the Bodega Hoyas de Cadena in the Requena-Utiel area with Brian.

Marty and Brian

Klaus and Zahava invited us to join them on an excursion to Benisanó to the Restaurant Levante and a paella cooking class with Rafael Vidal.  What fun!

We celebrated Thanksgiving in our new home with 13 of us gathered around the table.

And so the year is coming to an end.  Klaus and Zahava invited us to their home for latkes and the lighting of the menorah.

I joined the ladies from Pilates for our annual Christmas lunch.

We caught up with Dani Daortiz, another magician and old friend of Marty´s.

Marty did his first school  magic show in Valencia .

Sofia and Marty

 

An enthusiastic audience

Ofelia and Brian shared their family Christmas Eve with us.

Christmas day was spent with Pepe in Pedrguer enjoying yet another wonderful puchero.  This evening we will be heading out with Jordi and his wife Carol to end this year and begin our next.

I look forward to 2013 and wish all my friends and family a new year filled with health, joy and prosperity.

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  1. What a wonderful year. On the verge of another year of new adventures for both of you. Thank you for sharing and hope to see you and Marty soon in our own adventures in this small world. Besos y abrasos.