“A man does not belong to the place where he is born, but to the place where he chooses to die.”
I remember seeing that quote as one, I believe, from the famous American film director, Orson Welles. Born in Wisconsin, he is buried on the Ordonez property in Ronda, Spain.
On June 10, Patrick, my beloved husband and fellow traveler in Spain passed away suddenly not more than a month after we returned from our most recent trip. “The trip of a lifetime,” he called it. Madrid, Sevilla for the Feria, Ronda high in the Sierras, Malaga, back to Madrid.
Pat and I traveled often to Spain. It had literally become our second home. Just before leaving this last time we sat in Plaza de Santa Ana discussing our plans to make Madrid our home. The children were raised; we were free to do what we pleased. I can tell you that that man loved Spain as much as I do, particularly but certainly not limited to Madrid. A true adopted Madrideno, I would say. His list of tapas places was so long this time we had to eat every two hours to try them all! And oh, the wine. He was always seeking new brands, new strains, comparing each but loving all of them new or old. A carajillo after dinner; a flan when he felt like desert.
Yes, Pat was a true liver of life. For him, Spain was the place where he could live it best, and to its fullest. He would always remark about the people, their friendly acceptance of us, the ease with which one can sort of float about in its open accessible environment. For Pat, the dream of living there will not be realized. As his traveler in spirit, I will have to achieve it for him, if I can. One thing is certain: Spain and the Spanish people have not seen the last of me. And I know that somewhere Pat will be smiling.
RIP my beloved intrepid traveler…
By Saffron Flynn
Plaza Santa Ana photo by Gryffindor: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Gryffindor, CC.By-SA 3.0. Cropped