EVER MEET A WOMAN cured of disease by visions of the Virgin, a blind beggar who rides a motor-bike, a phantom who terrorises a whole community? You’ll find them all and much more in Sunny Side Up, David Baird’s nostalgic — often humorous, always moving — book about life in rural Spain.
It may read like fiction, but it’s all fact. It’s the Spain that Hemingway never saw and never wrote about.
“Baird’s ironic glance back over the past 30 years is recommended reading for anybody who has ever wondered what happened to ‘the real Spain’,” according to the Sunday Times.
When you travel the back roads of Spain, it’s easy to imagine that nothing ever happens in those whitewashed villages you pass, slumbering in the sun, forgotten by the world, far from the rat race…
Dream on. Behind those white walls you will find more drama and passion than you could ever imagine. All human life is here, in all its varieties.
British journalist David Baird and his Dutch wife found that out fast enough when — after travelling the world — they settled in an Andalusian village, seeking “the simple life”.
Soon they found that things were not so simple. The sub-title of Baird’s book is The 21st century hits a Spanish village. It’s the tale of a rural community as its shifts from a medieval way of life into the computer age.
There’s passion and pathos, humour and tragedy. And also an insightful dissection of local ways, as well as a wicked glance at expatriate eccentricities.
Baird’s other books include Between Two Fires, a highly acclaimed account of a largely unreported guerrilla war in Spain in the 1940s, as well as travel books and two works of fiction (Don’t Miss The Fiesta! and Typhoon Season).
Sunny Side Up, distributed by Maroma Press, is on sale through English bookshops in Spain and via Amazon and other Internet sellers. It has been selected by several Spanish schools as a set book for its pupils.
The German edition, Leben im Pueblo, translated by Uwe W. Paulsen, is available from the publisher, Verlag Winfried Jenior, Lassallestr. 15, D-34119 Kassel, Germany. Tel.: 0561-7391621, Fax 0561-774148. E-Mail: Jenior@aol.com. Homepage: http://www.jenior.de