Our stay in Donostia [dɔ’nɔɕtija] started very stormy, but afterwards we could all enjoy the pleasant temperatures. While some blc-ers took advantage of 17 degrees and sunshine to wade barefoot through the bitterly cold Atlantic surf, the other blc-ers preferred to walk through the old streets of Donostia. In addition to culture, architecture and the beach, culinary delicacies such as pintxos, cider and Jamón Iberico were of course also explored.
A nice side effect was that all blc-er could refresh or extend their Spanish knowledge. Only the Basque language remained an indecipherable code full of ts and xs for us until the end. Except for ongi etorri (Welcome) or eskerrik asko (Thank you very much), not much Basque escaped our lips.
In addition to all these cultural exploration tours, we also held our annual blc workshop. In beautiful surroundings and with friendly Basque support of a culinary nature, we allowed ourselves the luxury of an all-day workshop. Here we did not only take a loving (even quite critical) look back on the past year. Especially the coming year 2020 was on the agenda: blc strategy, goals, tasks and things we want to do better were discussed and many a good idea was brought forward. We were able to discuss all these topics, learn a bit of flexibility along the way and reflect on where we can integrate agile working methods even more into our everyday work. All in all, food for thought for 2020 – we are really looking forward to getting started!
Following food-for-thought was of course food-for-mouth (and feet) during our city tour.
Do It Yourself: City Tour
If you are travelling as a group, there is a good alternative to a “professional” city tour: you simply do it yourself! So every blc-er had a sight he or she presented to the others. The only challenge: navigate and do not lose the others. From the Plaza Cervantes (of course with Don Quixote including donkey and compagnon in the middle) we went through parks, past museums and churches up to the historic city hall on the promenade. The whole city has a Christmassy atmosphere and many places are decorated or nicely illuminated.
San Sebastián – a culinary world capital
In one word: PINTXOS! In Donostia you can’t get past them, and that’s just as well! The small, delicious appetizers are offered in almost every bar and café, we even made a tour out of them and had our dinner in several, very special pintxos bars one after the other, a very recommendable experience! But actually, culinary highlights were to be expected in a city where there are (with a total of 16 pieces!) more Michelin stars per inhabitant than in Paris and Tokyo together.
The unpredictable Atlantic coast
Storm Veiko brought us spectacular waves. With gusts of wind of up to 140 km/h it regularly blew us into the beautiful pintxo bars, but we didn’t find this too bad. And only one day later we had beautiful sunshine and feet in the sea.
With this weather, nothing stood in the way of a safe journey home and we went back to our home town of Düsseldorf on Sunday!