The nine see baths tradition

Beach at the occidental coast of Asturias

September arrives and with it, a tradition very settled by these lands. The 9 bathrooms.

Do you know what it is? It is said that if during the month of September you take nine baths in a row, of at least 9 waves, you protect yourself from colds throughout the year.

Do you know what the reasons are? Well, there are several opinions. Some say it's because in September the sea has more iodine. In other cases, because the sea temperature and the ambient temperature is very similar. In others, because September is the time when the sea has the highest temperature of the year, and has a certain thermal effect.

A bit confusing, yes. The truth is that we have found no scientific basis to support this rite. But it is true that sea baths are healthy. And it is customary for spa treatments to last about ten days.

I knew it as a local custom. But searching, I have seen that in many parts of Asturias and Galicia there is this tradition. And looking for even more, also in the South, in Almeria.

And you, do you have any similar tradition?

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Horreos and Paneras


Today we want to tell you about one of the most typical constructions of Asturias, the horreos (and paneras)

It is not the only typical Asturian construction, but perhaps the most famous. There are thousands of them. Rare is the town where you do not find some horreos.

What were they for? Mainly, for storage. Above all, to store grain, and other non-perishable foods. Its elevated and ventilated structure (the walls are not normally sealed, but there are slits between the boards that form them) without light, allows food to be kept dry for a long time.

Come on, like a very big pantry.

It is important to know that this use has been the main one, but not the only one. It has also served in a more or less punctual way as housing, workshop, accessory stay ...

A curious detail. Legally, it is a mobile property. That is, like a car. In fact, it is designed to be able to be disassembled and assembled if necessary. In fact, you could buy yourself a horreo and ride it back in your garden. As long as it is not catalogued. And as long as you have a garden.

That has made that, in many occasions, the horreo belongs to one person, but it is on another-s land. For hundreds of years. Curious, don't you think so?.

And that has to do with the photo that opens our blog. Mainly, the horreos were elements of economic power. Whoever had a horreo, had some wealth in the village. It has a build too, and things to keep, you know. Ostentation of wealth, come on. But of course, time passes by and not everything always stays that way. Sometimes your money dwindles, or you do not need as much space. And, what do you do? You split it halfway with someone else. You open a second door, mount a wooden partition in the middle, and build a new "subidoria" (in the photo you see 2 stone stairs) for the other access. Now, people call it timesharing. You see that everything is invented ...

Of course, if we Asturians wanted to take advantage of our uniqueness, this is not the time. Although this construction is clearly Asturian, there are similar models in other areas of the peninsula (Galicia, Cantabria, León, Portugal, Biscay, Navarre...), and also in the rest of Europe (France, Belgium, Germany, Great Britain, Norway, Sweden...). Even in other areas of the world.

We bring you a photo of an horreo in Iran that has its resemblance to our  Western Asturian ones, with vegetal cover.

You see, that at some point building aloft became fashionable, and this was a non-stop.

Globalization, they want to call it. now....


Original resources:

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Asturian local breeds. El Asturcon


Today we would like to tell you about one of the breeds of native animals around here: “Los Asturcones”.

Within the native asturian breeds, it is perhaps the best known. They are small horses, but strong and sturdy, and very hairy in winter.

Although there are representations of horses in these land since the Paleolithic, it seems that the Asturcones began to come here around the VIII-VI centuries a.C. There are several theories that make them related to other ponies or small Celtic horses, although with origin in the Caspian pony. In fact, these theories indicate that they have common ties with other ponies in areas as long away as Sweden, Iceland, Ireland, Britain and Germany. On the peninsula, they are family of Galician Facos, Basque Pottoka or Portuguese Garranos. You know, then we think that we travel a lot...

Like many other indigenous races, the modern and above all contemporary age did not sit well with them. Being small animals and "less productive" than other foreign breeds, their breeding became a jam. But the hardest time was the time between the 1930s and 1970s. The Asturcon was no longer valued for meat or draft animals, and was on the verge of its disappearance.

In the 70s it starts a revival, thanks to conservative associations and the Ponis Breeders of the Asturcón race Association.

Today the Asturcon is not only a horse of ancestral roots, but represents purity, nobility and freedom. Don't forget that it lives free on the mountain, and has a lot of resistance to adapt to harsh climates and rugged terrain.

Since 1980, in August, the "Fiesta del Asturcón" is celebrated, dedicated to exhibiting, taming and marking these horses.

Next time somebody tells you something's small and "it's worthless," think of the Asturcon.

Oh, if It could talk...

Sources used: A. ALVAREZ SEVILLA. Les races autoctones del Principáu d'Asturies

Photo: La Cerecina (web

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