Thank you to everyone who responded to the request for Christmas housesitters. The dates are now taken - but there's always next year : )
I have a 2ha farm and half-restored farm buildings in a beautiful rural area of hills and farms near the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park. I produce my own olive oil, pomegranates, figs and oranges, and do the maintenance work, grow vegetables and work on rebuilding projects when I get time off from my job as a journalist. There's a mature garden which needs overhauling. I'm often here on my own but part of a close-knit Spanish-speaking community. My neighbours are all farmers who are doing interesting things too.
DIY and building projects
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I'm English but all neighbours are Spanish and have worked the surrounding land for centuries. I've learnt a lot from them - about farming, nature, food, life - and so will any visitors. The area is quiet and deeply rural but close to two villages with plenty of cultural events (long walk, short drive) and a language school. We are just under 1hr from Jerez, 40 mins to Ronda and Arcos, and just over 1hr from Seville.
Help would be appreciated with gardening and landscaping (watering, weeding, clearing ditches, creating a raised garden, planting, fencing, pruning) to maintenance (painting, plastering, chopping wood) and maybe fruit picking depending on the season. If you have any experience in carpentry, building, plumbing, electrical work or know about building outside ovens or designing compost toilets, even better!
Some months I travel for work and so sometimes need mature, self-reliant, responsible house-sitters who can look after the farm, house, dog and cat for short periods.
A big bed-sitting room with open fire and two beds, and sometimes a double room. Shared bathroom, shared kitchen, but plenty of outside space with tables and outdoor cooking in summer. I write for a living so it's best for people who are quite independent and like their own space. I don't have TV - unless you can put the aerial back up - but there are lots of books and DVDs. Internet access is steady but limited ie its for emails not streaming.
This is a fantastic area to explore with good walks straight from the door, and river walks and mountain walks a bit further afield. Jerez, Ronda, Arcos and Sevilla are all easy day-trip distance. The nearest villages are Zahara de la Sierra (officially named one of the most beautiful in Spain) and Algodonales (famous for hang gliding). There's a reservoir nearby with kayaking available, and plenty of adventure companies offering canyoning.
Although best with your own car or mountain bikes, even if I'm not here, it's easy to arrange lifts into Algodonales (15 mins drive away) and from there you have good bus routes.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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