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Puntos de vista - a personal Spain blog

Musings about Spain and Spanish life by Paul Whitelock, hispanophile of 40 years and now resident of Ronda in Andalucía .

Ollie and Lily
Sunday, February 13, 2022 @ 6:11 AM

“Hallo. My name is Oliver and I live in Hohenklingen, near Knittlingen, Germany. I’m a friend and colleague of your stepson Johannes and, since we are going on an extended trip to Spain in 2022, he’s suggested we might come and visit you in Montejaque, which is of course twinned with Knittlingen.”


Twin town visitors

This message, in German, popped up one day last Autumn in Messenger.

I got back in touch immediately on behalf of myself  and my wife Rita, Johannes’ mother.

It turns out that Johannes, when aged 15, attended a carpentry/joinery workshop being run by Oliver, a member of the guild of joiners, and was so inspired that Johannes trained to be a joiner, and is now, 25 years later, also a member of the guild and an experienced and talented joiner. Johannes and Oliver often work together.

When Johannes found out that Oliver, his partner Lily and their four children were planning an extended visit to Spain, he suggested getting in touch with us.

Now, after several messages and phone calls, the “Summers” (their surname – Lily is half-Scottish) are living rent-free in Casa Real, my recently “re-formed” house in Montejaque.

Why rent-free? Because Oliver’s “rent” is to complete a number of carpentry jobs we have in our three properties here.

Having arrived at the end of January in their adapted Renault Trafic after a month on the road, they have already asked to extend their stay from one month to two. They love it so much here in the Serranía de Ronda that they are now considering extending at least until the summer if not longer.

Their three girls, Alice 7, Amy 8 and Leyla 10, are already settled in the Colegio Público in Montejaque, and Lily has enrolled on the weekly Spanish class in the village.

Lily and Oliver are currently on maternity/paternity leave, as their fourth child, baby Cailan is only six months old (baby leave in Germany is very generous), but despite still getting some pay from their employers, they need to work to supplement their income.


Joinery – German style

As a joiner, Oliver is in great demand here, where carpenters seem to prefer to work with aluminium. As well as the jobs he’s done/is doing for us in lieu of rent, his order book for the next few weeks is full. Two kitchen renovations, a terrace roof, a large bookcase and some bespoke spice racks are some of the commissions he has already obtained.


Physio – a la alemana

Lily is a trained and experienced physiotherapist and can offer a range of treatments, including reflex therapy and Dorn method. She already has four patients: two English residents (back and shoulder respectively), a Spanish hotelier (back) and me (my 71-year-old spinal column suffered a lot during the reform of Casa Real!)

Both speak English, as well as German.



And as if that wasn’t enough, they’re both talented guitarists/singers.

They were both experienced performers before they met, but now, they have developed a joint repertoire to add to their individual ones.

They’ll be making their Spanish debuts this coming Sunday (tomorrow) at Bar Allioli in Jimera de Líbar (Málaga) from 2.00 pm.

Reservations on 606 69 27 53



Contact information

If you need a massage or a wood job, please contact:

Paul on 636 52 75 16

Lily on +49 1517 0017586

Oliver on +49  173 6739131

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