I spent a couple of weeks in Orgiva, and surrounds, last summer, highly influenced by Chris Stewart's books and a recommendation from a colleague who holidays in Orgiva every year. I'm 60 so what I say may be highly age-biased but I'll post it for those who read this to take as they wish. First of all, a quote from Stewart's 'The Almond Blossom Appreciation Society, p243: 'I looked at the low whietewashed house with its thick stone walls, the hens scratching about in the dust, the magnificent vine drooping with fat green grapes, the geraniums bursting exuberantly from old pots and tins and was reminded of the simple unselfconscious beauty that I had first loved about the Alpujarras. It's true that it isn't to everybody's taste - the poverty and apparent shabiness put some people off - but there is an integrity to this beauty that has to be sifted from the rubbish and the thorns and dust.' Sadly, I'm one of those who cannot divorce the rubbish from the beauty, finding it hard to understand how people can live in such a potentially beautiful place yet allow a heap of old, used household appliances to accumulate around their house with apparent unconcern. How on earth can the Spanish put up a massive sign, just outside of Orgiva that welcomes you to the Sierra Nevada when the first thing that hits you is a massive juggernaut depot, spread in a haphazard jumble across both sides of the road. This is followed by ugly wind farms and so many electric pylons and cables criss crossing the mountains that it's hard to spot the attractiveness. Frankly, I find Spain, or what I've seen of it after( admittedly) only 2 visits, as little more than a massive quarry. I know it's a poor country, with a recent broken history and now a currrency crisis, and I'm sure that doesn't help, but all this is reflected in the people, too, and while I didn't get any hostility or unkindness, neither did I get the feeling anybody was bothered whether I was visiting the place or not. Orgiva is undoubtedly an 'alternative' place and especially on market day you'll find hundreds of new age and old-new age folk who find a certain peace in Orgiva or its surroundings. Actually from the hills on an evening, as the sun is setting it does look a magical pink hued place but the reality is rather shabby and couldn't care less. By the way, the market is fabulous, so if you do go, get there early in your stay and make the most of the fresh produce at bargain prices. My previous holidays have been spent in Provence and the Lake District; if you too are partial to the well keptness of these two places then you may share my difficulty in appreciating the Alpurrajas. On the other hand you may look at it with Chris Stewart's eyes and see the magic; if you can enter the town and see any beauty in a huge electricity generator, however, then I take off my hat to you.