En alabança de Finestrat

Rubí writes her Tuesday blog:

Oh dear, Mariano Rajoy: it is not going so well since you left Finestrat.

I am a Valenciana donkey.  I was born in Parcent in the Marina Alta and I now live in the Marina Baixa in our lovely field near Finestrat.  Some residents of Finestrat appreciate us when we walk up to the village. The tourists always like to see us and to photograph us.

That is me, Rubí, on the left.  We are wearing our 2015  Santa hats. Finestrat is behind us, just under Puig Campana the Jurassic mountain you can see from Benidorm.
I am a burra Valenciana.  I was born here and I belong here.  Just like my beautiful grey Valenciana companion donkey Matilde, with part Andaluz blood.  Our foals Morris and Aitana were born in this field in 2011.  This field is all we know.  It is our life.  It is our security.

Our life here is supported by a man – an Englishman – who goes to work every day, after he has spent an hour seeing to our daily needs.  He teaches in a school.  He is a Geography teacher.  I think that means he teaches boys and girls how to find their way around if they get lost, but I don’t know much about it and I will have to ask Morris to read me a book about Geography one day.

Sometimes we are visited by Juan Aparicio from the Madrid donkey sanctuary, who advises our owner on how to care for us and he visits us every year when he comes to stay nearby.  Juan Aparicio says I am too fat, so I am not very sure our owner should be listening to him, as that means my diet may have to change…

Our owner is registered as a “ganadero” (a livestock keeper) under all the legal requirements of the Generalitat de Valencia. Even our manure must be disposed of in an officially recognised manner. Donkey arrangements are strict under European law, and we have to follow them.  Our web blog (called a “blog”, apparently) is even visited by Queen Sofia, who is the Patron of Spanish donkeys.  We are a disappearing species in Spain. Donkeys need to be cared for.

A few weeks ago our owner posted a video on YouTube showing a very unpleasant visit by people from Finestrat.  These people shouted and made threats towards our owner.  Luckily our owner recorded it all on video and took it to the Guardia Civil, resulting in a legal action.  The video has now been seen by more than 2500 viewers – mostly in the village of Finestrat – and local people have been appalled at the attitude of the hunters.

Our owner had a meeting with the Partido Popular Mayor of Finestrat about this incident shortly after the video appeared on YouTube.  Oh those happy days when Mayor Juanfran  had the Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy visiting Finestrat, by the coincidence of having an interesting symbolic mountain that went well with speeches about climbing electoral heights.

Phone downloa 25OCT 295
Presidente del Gobierno Mariano Rajoy and Juanfran on his right, arriving for speeches in Finestrat, with Puig Campana as the electoral symbolism

Yes, our owner had a meeting with Mayor Juanfran, shortly after he replied to an open letter on this blog.  Read what mayor Juanfran said on this blog.

In the meeting with our owner, the mayor said that “certain individuals” acting in an irresponsible way were not representative of the hunters of Finestrat.  Oh dear…

It has taken four weeks for the truth to emerge.

The man who gets out of the second car in the video and makes threats of violence is no less than the secretary of the Finestrat hunting association.


I am a burra Valenciana.  My companion donkeys are animals of this region.  When people come to our field and disturb us with threats of violence, we are afraid.  We are donkeys.  Our life here is quiet, enjoyable, philosophical.  When the hunters of Finestrat come here to pick arguments and disturb our Sunday, we are distressed.  They use the countryside for violence, not enjoyment of nature.

But one thing doesn’t quite add up.  Why did the mayor of Finestrat not mention to our owner that this man was the Secretary of the Finestrat hunters’ association?  The mayor seems to be a long way behind his own citizens. More than 2000 people have seen the video.  Most villagers are appalled by the behaviour of people “representing” the village.

The mayor, Juanfran, told our owner he is a fan of hunting… “Responsible” hunting.  Ah, that will be the “responsible” secretary of hunters then?

And who will safeguard OUR interests?  The mayor of Finestrat? I am a burra Valenciana.  You may not respect my owner – as he is a mere “foreigner” not born in Finestrat – but I want my rights respected.  Can we rely on the present mayor or is he a little too biased towards those who would threaten our Sunday peace with threats of violence?

You cannot shrug off the answers Juanfran.  Nor can the PP in office.

Thanks, Rubí donkey.  A Valenciana.


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