Posted by: travelrat | September 2, 2011

Villacarriedo: Flags and Bread.

Villacarriedo: 29th March 2011.

It was only when I tried to look something up on the Internet that I realised I’ve been spelling Villacarriedo wrongly. I suppose it was being brought up on the rule of ‘I before E except after C’  (Then, they taught us ScIEnce! ). That’s a rule I break every time I sign my name … and one my friend Neil Jameison-Reid drives a coach and horses through when he signs his!

Anyway, the rain stopped, and we were finally able to extend our explorations. Most of us still wore raincoats, though, and carried umbrellas, although, after only a short time, we wished we hadn’t.

The first thing I saw was a line of four flagpoles outside a hotel annex across the road. From them flew the flags of the EU, of Spain, the junta of Cantabria, and …

‘Why are they flying an Italian flag?’

‘It’s not Italian; it’s the flag of Mexico! Do you see the coat of arms in the middle?

The reason was that the consortium that owned the hotel had some connection with Mexico, although my informant wasn’t quite sure what it was.

On our walk, I found the reason for the canvas and jute bags I had seen hanging from most doorways on the way here. A little van was driving from house to house, and from it, the man was delivering … bread. A little further on, we saw a lady carrying an old-fashioned milk can. Could it be, I wondered, that they delivered your bread, but you had to go and collect your milk?

Exactly the opposite, in fact, to what we do at home!



  1. HI Keith,
    That is astonishing that they deliver bread. It wouldn’t be allowed here because of our hygiene laws, it would have to be well and truly wrapped I think. What on earth happens to the bread when it rains?

    • I had the same thought about the milk. I vaguely remember those milk cans; you’d leave them on your doorstep, and the milkman would come round with a churn and a measuring ladle.

      I think I vaguely remember bread deliveries somewhere in UK, but they wouldn’t be left on the doorstep; the ‘boy’ would come around on a bike with your order, and knock on the door. But, where did I see that?

      I should imagine the bread is brought indoors pretty rapidly, The Spanish are rather like the French, in that bread more than a few hours old is only good for making toast … and definitely not after the birds have been at it!

      (When I lived in Germany, I often used to cycle down to the bakery to buy croissants for breakast, or, if I was on ‘nights’, pick them up on my way home. But, here, he doesn’t open till 9 a.m.! :()

  2. I Love that they deliver the bread and leave them in those bags. That is so charming!!

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