Sun, Ski & Sangria...

I’m currently on a ski holiday in Spain, yes, it’s a bit of a mind bend but yes there is skiing available in Spain. It usually throws people when you tell them where you’re off to. 

On the plane over I got chatting with some very beered up chaps that were off to spend a few days in the sun. One of them said “if you all come down to La Zenia beach tomorrow morning I’m buying the champagne!” 

I said it sounded like a great offer but we’re off skiing, dumbfounded and utterly confused (might have been the beers of course) they thought we’d caught the wrong flight! Hahahahaha.  

Skiing in Spain isn’t well known. Spain is known to us Brits for sun, sea and sangria.  

But down in Granada is the mountain range of Sierra Nevada. And up that mountain is a village called Monachil, where there is some very good skiing. 

We usually fly to our little villa (and I mean little, it’s just a tiny two bedroom house). This trip our tiny little house was bursting at the seams. Chris and I decided to get his ski fix. Ben and his girlfriend Kaitlyn decided to join us as she’s been learning to ski. And some of Ben’s friends kept saying they wanted to go skiing again, I offered them to come with us and they accepted. So the 8 of us flew to our little house, stayed there the night and left for skiing first thing in the morning. The ski resort is about 3 and a half hours drive from our villa, the last half hour of that is the climb up the mountain road, great fun in a well ladened transit van with 8 people with 8 people’s ski luggage. :o 

Chris only started skiing 3 years ago but has quickly become addicted to it. I have tried and I have failed to learn.  

I usually come on the trips to spend the week in the spa, meeting the others for lunch and dinner. It’s not ideal, it can get a bit boring but as I don’t ski and don’t like being left home alone in the U.K. it’s the better of two evils (Don’t get me wrong I know I’m lucky to get to come along and spend time in beautiful scenery). 

This is the first time I’ve stayed at this resort, I only came down for the day trip last time. 

I didn’t realise that this resort was only geared up for skiing. When I’ve been to Austria on previous ski trips there’s been places to walk, spa treatments dawn till dusk as well as swimming pool facilities.  

We booked the best hotel we could find here. There’s not that many to choose from as it’s not a very big resort. We went to our room and as we walked in my heart sank. For a non skier on a ski holiday it’s important to have pleasant surroundings, this particular room was probably the most depressing I’ve seen in a long while, dated decor, radiator hanging off the wall,  minuscule, not that I brought a cat with me but had I done there was no way you could swing it here! And the view was awful. There were no redeeming features. I swear to god the rooms at the Bates  Motel were more appealing. Hahahahaha 

Dissappointed but not distraught I headed up the mountain with the others for them to ski and for me to have a hot chocolate in the sunshine. The weather has been glorious, that is one good aspect of skiing in Spain. That and they have some amazing award winning zero alcohol largers. 

Anyway they went off to ski and I came back to go to the swimming pool.  

Turns out this hotel doesn’t have a swimming pool. And the spa treatments are only available from 1 in the afternoon.  

Back to the room I trudge, heavy hearted. I walked in, looked around and walked back out. Back down to reception and did something I’ve never done in my life.  

I said to the lady on reception I hate my room is there anything I can do about it. She informs me I can pay to upgrade, I was on my own at this point as Chris was up the mountain having a blast, so I took the executive decision to go for it and pay for the upgrade.  

I walked into my new room with a very happy heart, it was much better, welcoming, modern and spacious (comparatively speaking).  

One of the reasons I wanted the upgrade was the view from our original room was dreary and somewhat depressing. 


The irony was not lost on me when I looked out of the window of my newly upgraded room that I was now staring straight at my old room!! Hahahahaha 


I give up! Hahahahaha  

Handily with the upgrade comes access to a day lounge that’s stocked with food and drink all day. And somewhere pleasant to sit and read. And because this isn’t a resort to come to if you don’t ski I had the place to myself. Absolute heaven.


The spa only being open from 1 is really restrictive and disappointing but I did make the most of it by having a few treatments. 

They don’t have a pool here, but they have this massive thalasso spa area.  It’s all jets and fountains. But again as I was alone here I made the most of it by attempting swimming in it. Not an easy task, as it’s like swimming in a force 10 gale in the North Sea! And in parts it’s only about 2 foot deep. It was a challenge but I managed, it would be a great place for training for a the cross channel swim! Hahahahaha. 


Making the most of a difficult situation (no, I don’t suppose I’m going to get much sympathy on this one “oh diddums is your lovely holiday to a gorgeous resort not to your liking?”  Hahahahaha)  

I managed to keep myself occupied till the others were available for lunch and beer breaks up the mountain.  


let it snow...


Although learning to ski was beyond my capabilities...and let’s face it even if I had been able to learn I wouldn’t have been able to carry the equipment as it would have angered my little pet hernia. Skiing is a non starter for me. But I do love to see snow. 


Ski coat and hat from Moncler. ( I’m a firm follower of the all the gear no idea mantra). 

Like I said, I managed to fill my days. I did have a couple of massages. The first one I went to was a bit of a rush to get to as I needed to shower & bag change to get ready for it after my “swim”. I was in such a rush that when I got there I completely forgot to mention that I have a stoma. I’m never really quite sure what the etiquette is for such eventualities.  

Do I blurt it out before I’ve even got into the room or do I wait till they get to that part of the massage?  Well on this occasion I didn’t remember that I even had one at all so it never got brought up.  

It’s a good thing for me that I was married pre stoma surgery. My forgetting to mention it to the masseuse had me laying thinking about dating and stoma-ing, very relaxing I can tell you, my mind racing about what ifs that aren’t even in my near future (...hopefully, as one can never take that for granted), When would you broach the subject? I’m pretty open about mine, if you stand too close to me in any queue I’m likely to give you the ins and outs of all my cancer/poo issues. So I imagine I’d mention it straight away, but even with my blasé attitude towards my colostomy how do you start that conversation? And were I to be rejected for one of the many and various reasons, the dating game never runs smoothly from what I recall, it was a series of rejections till one stuck. Hahahahaha. But would I always assume it was because I had a stoma? I can appreciate that dating with a stoma isn’t easy, dating is stressful enough but with something that societally is incredibly misunderstood, misinformed and foolishly deemed yucky it must be hard. 

But the best thing about it is it really sorts the wheat from the chaff. If anyone rejects you because you have a stoma it’s a blessing. They’re not the sort of people you’d want to be with. Thank your lucky stars for that lucky escape. 

Anyway, on my second massage I did remember before we started to mention that I had a stoma, it was actually quite funny, I opened my robe to show her that I had a colostomy, I could have just used my words as it’s colostomia in Spanish as far as I’m aware...but there I am robe wide open, bag on show, telling her that I have a colostomy and that it’s not a problem...this time forgetting I’m not wearing a bra, seriously am I ever going to get everything right at the right time, of course she’s now aware and fully informed that I have said stoma....all whilst exposing myself to her like some flasher from the 80’s with a dirty old rain mac on! For the love of god! Hahahahaha  :) 

The massage was nice, although she did avoid my abdomen completely (where as the one I didn’t let know did actually massage my belly albeit briefly, I’m not sure if masseuse training cover ostomies at all).  

It’s been an ok trip. Ski and non skiing doesn’t really sit well perfectly together but as Chris loves skiing there isn’t really much that can be done, after all he does enough lovely things for me throughout the year. :) 

I packed for Spain really well, I took everything I needed for the time away. Unfortunately when I got to our villa I unpacked some of the things I did actually need for the rest of the holiday. I forgot to bring the little black sacks for putting used colostomy bags in. They were sitting safely on my chest of drawers at the villa. 

I didn’t panic too much as I had 3 with me, and I thought I’d just simply buy some in the supermarket here. Well, the best laid plans and all that. They don’t sell nappy sacks here, I’m not sure if that’s an all over Spain thing, I’ve never needed to look for them before as I bring my NHS ones. But here three thousand metres up a mountain they don’t sell them, not in any of the supermarkets or the pharmacy. 

Needs must and all that I had to improvise as best I could, not terribly eco friendly but then having a stoma is the least eco friendly hobby you can have  really. 


The worlds biggest nappy sack/stoma disposal bags you can get. This was preferable to the only other alternative which was clear sandwich bags they had in the shop, and no one, NO ONE wants clear colostomy refuse bags do they! Hahahahaha 



The ski group had a blast. Sun, Ski and Sangria.

And most importantly of all, Chris has had his ski top up and Kaitlyn has learned to ski before our big 50th birthday ski trip for Chris in December.  

There’s more than one reason why I don’t ski or board, I’m way to clumsy. 

This is the result of my very experienced snow boarding son’s last run of our last day.  


  A very broken clavical. It’s a mess and we speak very little Spanish, and certainly not enough to easily navigate the Spanish hospital system. 

Currently awaiting treatment. Poor poor boy, he’s in a lot of pain.