The autumn of carob beans in Sant Pere de Ribes

* The author is part of the community of readers of La Vanguardia.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
08 December 2023 Friday 15:55
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The autumn of carob beans in Sant Pere de Ribes

* The author is part of the community of readers of La Vanguardia

"Autumn was in the air, with its penetrating smell and its spasmodic winds that blew and then died in the midst of their momentum" Steinbeck (The Meadows of Heaven).

In autumn, carob beans are collected in the Sant Pere de Ribes stream. The large spread cloths are filled with this fruit. The morning walk has begun along the Paseo de Circunvalación. The sun was trying to break through some indecisive clouds. A willow offered its yellow and red beauties in full bloom. The carob beans provided a warm, bittersweet and familiar smell.

A dog - a German shepherd - studies me briefly and does not hesitate to approach, wagging his tail. They smell affection very well.

- "Tom is very docile and good and I apologize for not keeping him restrained."

- "Of course, of course, there is everything. They are very smart..."

I discover a new path that leads to the Los Viñedos urbanization, where I have good friends. Wild cacti grow. I carefully and without gloves pluck some chitos for my terrace.

The walk runs through large spaces, solitary, suggestive and full of life, silence and plant beauty. In the distance I can see Sitges and the blue Mediterranean and the endearing silhouette of the town of Puigmoltó where in another time it was my favorite spot to paint watercolors "au plein air" with Ricard Passarell.

Coming back coincided with Tom. He has come like an arrow and has allowed me to give him all kinds of caresses and games. Friends forever...

- "You have a dog, right? You know how to treat them very well because they understand it," your owner tells me.

- "I had one in my childhood..."

I notice the sweet smell of fennel with small snails that choose these branches. Curiously, many make their last journey there and leave their shell attached.

Upon reaching the center of town I am greeted by the smell of freshly baked bread. I discover an early morning cafe -La Riera- with a good menu of teas such as Ceylan, Djardeling, Earl Gray, Rooibos...

In the distance the Ibai Hotel, with its own and very organic garden. Las Parelladas is very close, with the silhouettes changed since the 90s when he painted them from life with his friend Passarell, and there was a car at the door...

The beautiful silhouette of the castle, where the dancer José de Udaeta lived, and the hermitage of Sant Pau adorn the landscape of Monte Montgrós.

"There is a book always open to all eyes and that is nature" (Rousseau)

A good coffee at Cavaller helps along the way. It is decorated with photographs of The Beatles... I have taken notes for future drawings of El Cosidor (a vintage shop), Un altre món, La Trobada, La Riera and La Premsa, a bar and art gallery, which Josep María directed, where I did some watercolor exhibition and I hope to repeat it.

I have been walking for several hours and it is prudent to return to the base. The morning air has brought renewed aromas. Breathing in the field calms the body. Good ideas arise when the day is born, with the pink fingers of dawn, which Homer described. An avenue of mulberry trees escorts my return home.

On the terrace of my house after the cactus transplant I open a book:

"The characteristic of normality is finding happiness both in reality and in the imaginary, both in the evolved and in the most primitive."

I think nature has given me her hand this autumn morning.