REDONDELA, SPAIN – This week Giving50x52 goes international…and not $50, but 50€.
My wife and I just returned from a fantastic trip to Spain to visit our daughter, Alia, who lives and works in the Vigo area in northern Spain. Alia met us in Madrid and we travelled throughout Spain, spending time in Madrid, Barcelona, Zaragoza, San Sebastian, Zarautz, Bilbao, Oviedo and Vigo.
The trip was vacation, but I had considered making a Giving50x52 contribution while in Spain…if the opportunity seemed right. This was right.
On Easter Sunday, we took a bus to Redondela, near Vigo, and met up with Mingos. Mingos is a teacher in the school where Alia works. He also is Alia’s advisor and mentor during this school year.
Mingos (on the left in the the photo with Alia) showed us around Redondela and we walked to the school. We then met up with his partner, Marisa, and Marisa’s daughter Noelia for a wonderful seafood lunch at a restaurant overlooking the bay.
After the 2+ hour lunch [note: lunch in Spain is the primary meal of the day and commonly begins around 2:30pm or so and has multiple courses.] Mingos drove us to Pontevedra where we walked throughout the central area.
Mingos speaks very good English and was easy and enjoyable to talk with. He is 50 years old, like myself and has lived in the Redondela area all of his life. For several years he has been a teacher who fills in on an annual basis for an available position at a school, so every year he is in a different school and often teaching a different subject. This year he is teaching art. He played football (you call it soccer) as a youth and coached team handball.
I really enjoyed being with Mingos and laughing at his jokes and talking football. Meeting Mingos was a real opportunity. He has a great sense of humor and a wonderful spirit.
UPDATE May 13, 2013 – Mingos had told us that he wanted to use the € 50 for a favorite charity and he just provided me with an update, shown on the next page: