A2 – Writing: Description of a place

The town where I live
I live in El Chaparral, a small village near Albolote, a town in the province of Granada very near Granada city. El Chaparral is about 12 km to the north of Granada, next to the motorway to Madrid, just on the highway exit to a well-known reservoir called, in Spanish, Pantano de Cubillas. El Chaparral is very small, as it only has, approximately, 1,500 inhabitants, while Albolote has about 20,000, including the population of El Chaparral.

El Chaparral has nothing special, but maybe its history does, and it’s a really recent history. In 1956 there was a very hard earthquake 5.1 — Richter degrees—, and Albolote was practically destroyed. After that, the government ordered to build a new small village near it, for the people who had lost everything.

Three hundred houses were built for three hundred families. They were big houses with an orchard and a kind of shed for animals.  Each family had a big plot of land for dry cultivation, and a smaller one for wet cultivation. In addition, each four neighbours shared a curious kind of building for drying the tobacco plant called, in Spanish, «secadero de tabaco». This kind of construction was very typical then, but all of them have fallen into disuse.

The streets of El Chaparral are all in the shape of a net, and its houses are no more than two storeys high. Nowadays there are only two or three new blocks of flats with one more floor.

Actually, in the village where I live, there are no old buildings or historic monuments to see, so the most interesting thing you can see or to go to is the Cubillas reservoir. There you can practice some water sports like boating, surfing, jet skiing and fishing , or you can spend a nice day in the countryside and enjoy its sports areas, have a barbecue, or simply walk around the reservoir and enjoy the nature.

The weather in the area is the typical continental Mediterranean weather: cold in the winter and really hot in the summer. The autumn and the spring are very short and sometimes too similar to the winter or the summer. The rain is concentrated especially in the winter, less in the autumn and the spring, and none in the summer.

El Chaparral isn’t specially famous, except for the Cubillas reservoir, and recently for some of its restaurants, where it’s more and more necessary to reserve in advance if you want to go for lunch or dinner during the weekend.

The best thing about El Chaparral in my view is that it’s a really quiet small village, very near Granada city.  There, life is very nice and, at the same time, you can enjoy almost all the advantages of a bigger city like Granada.
Julián García Díaz. 2º Básico C

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