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2015 in review

2015 was an excellent year for Maria and her Spanish School Avancemos. She was busy throughout the year but even more important: She is absolutely thrilled by all the encounters with her students and the fun and pleasure she gets out of her classes. It gives her great pride to see them all progressing, not withstanding were they come from (contacts from 49 countries!)

Many thanks and hope to see you all again in 2016: ¡Avancemos!


The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,200 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 37 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

A sound language from a sound mouth, combine your classes with dentist visits.

Already 3 students this year have combined a couple of weeks Spanish conversation classes with some visits to a dentist very near our school. Carlos was the first, sticking very much to a strict daily pattern of first classes, and in the afternoon the dentist. I guess a fine  Flor the caña was his reward in the evenings.

Dennis turned it around, starting the day with the dentist and classes in the afternoon:  “I loved that Salinas is a ample user of anesthesia, but sometimes my pronunciation during the classes in the afternoon was dramatic! But the results were excellent and I could have never afford it in the USA.  And Maria is a keen listener, also in times of numb”

Richard combined a filling,  2 crones, a canal treatment and extracting a wisdom tooth in just a few weeks:” I went from anesthesia to anesthesia, but I preferred to have it done fast and appreciate his quality work!”


We were surprised, but Dr Jaime Salinas happens to be a very popular dentists within the expat community living here in Granada as well. Time for a visit. Jaime Salinas explains that often it is more comfortable for clients to communicate in English. Which is not a problem for him, as he lived for more than 5 years in Miami and speaks it very well.  He graduated and specialized in Managua and Mexico, by which he followed the path of his father, who was also a dentist. With more than 8 years experience and specialized in oral rehabilitation and oral cosmetics, he is perfectly focused on many problems of the expats and tourists that can stay here for at least 2 weeks. Jaime:  the prices we charge here, very often make up sufficiently to pay for the flight trip. For example, a crone will set you back (all in!!) 300 USD, a root canal treatment also 300 USD, normal fillings between 20 and 40 USD.  If you want more information, contact Jaime himself (when he cleans up his email box, you can reach him on :-))

Visit the Ecotourism station of butterflies, halfway up the Apollo. Also a very fine walk in the park

A nice trip of 2-3 hours to nature and feel good might be the Mariposario, the butterfly station 2 miles outside Granada. Original built by Jerry and Jane Foulds, originally of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on 10 acres of fertile volcano ground.

from the website of the butterfly station

from the website of the butterfly station

They started it in 2004 with the aim of helping nature a bit by cultivating and studying locally butterflies.. Elevated it not only gives you beautiful views but also that fresh atmosphere, once in a while so needed here.

When we visited it, the butterfly expert Julio wasn’t there, but the gardener/caretaker was more than pleased to break the silence and we had a amusing chat with him (I guess he might sometimes be the most lonely man in Granada).

If you can’t get enough of it, 2 cabins are available for staying a few days or weeks. Don’t expect abundant luxury, but the basics are there and the beautiful environment, silent (except for the birds) and scenery. You might even put those arms at work and help the caretaker.

Don't touch

Don’t touch

Btw: We liked even more the perfect walk on the terrain. With good signs and even nameplates for strange trees, it is a true moment of relaxation and splendid isolation.

On google maps you can find it at  or visit the website