One of the great things about living in our rural community, where some of the properties are holiday homes, is that the arrival of their owners – for a holiday or some essential finca maintenance – provides us with an ever-changing local social scene.
We’ve enjoyed getting to know other Europeans in our valley – in particular, one very amusing German couple, who used to vacation sporadically at their finca until they realised that the property maintenance awaiting them meant it wasn’t much of a holiday after all. They sold up and bought a hassle-free second home in Germany. But when the new owners, a Swiss family, came to introduce themselves, we knew we’d like them. Well, they did come bearing Toblerone . . .
Our Swiss friends do things differently to other Europeans we know. For example, they greet each other with three kisses on alternate cheeks (we always forget and withdraw after the second kiss, leading to a clumsy clash of noses) and – as we discovered one afternoon – when they invite people over for a drink, there’s often lots of delicious food to go with it!
On one occasion, they invited us for brunch at the beautiful home they’ve created. At ten in the morning, we were sitting on their terrace in glorious sunshine, enjoying authentic Swiss muesli, delicious breads, cheeses, ham and fruit, accompanied by orange juice, good coffee and a glass of Cava.
When we entertain friends, it’s usually over dinner or lunch, but brunch is certainly an appealing option for the future. Not only is there something quite civilized about it, you can get away with not doing any cooking – and, in the heat of a Mallorcan summer, that has to be a bonus.