Requijada



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Requijada is the name of our village, including the land around it for about 2 km in all directions. The village is small, with a handful of little streets each with a few houses: there are around twenty year-round residents, and only a few of them are under fifty years old; during weekends and holiday times there are many more people, including whole families from toddlers to grandparents. The only commercial outlet in the village is the small, quiet, hotel, often closed during the week. There is a church, used on Sunday mornings. There are many villages nearby, most of them as quiet as Requijada, some of them busier, with shops, bars, or markets.

Our finca is 200 metres from the edge of the village. The village is set in a piedmont landscape, that is at the foot of the mountains called the Sierra de Guadarrama, that rise locally to 1800 metres. These mountains are part of the larger cordillera called the Sistema Central that cuts accross the centre of Spain, in a north-east to south-west direction. Requijada is at 1000 metres altitude.

The climate is a continental-montane variant of mediterranean. There is snow and rain at times, but overall it is a dry, sunny, climate. Since we came here, we've had generally dry winters, with warm, sunny days and frosty, starry nights, and only two wet winters, when we had to keep a fire going most days, but with enough clear spells to get out in the country nearly every day. The summers are hot, with July temperatures frequently in the 30s, with peaks in the 40s and, from June to September, outdoor physical work is best done in the early morning, or in the evening. Most summer nights are comfortably fresh.

Typical landscape featureThe piedmont landscape is a beautiful mosaic of small hills with a scrubland vegetation of juniper, escarpments revealing ochre sediments, streams and small rivers, flat tracts of land, some of it cultivated with cereals, the rest used for grazing.