New season I’m leaving Thursday evening began with a classic story: a couple moves to Spain with a mountain of dreams, but no building permit. An update from Wijnand and Nienke Lemmers shows that they are still waiting to receive this coveted permission to build their eco-holiday park. Three years after their departure.
In this episode we meet Wijnand (42) and Nienke (39), who already dreamed of an international adventure before they met each other. They leave for Spain’s Arenas de San Pedro with their children Issa (age 10) and Lucas (age 8), dogs Jack and Moose, iguana Sippy, chinchillas Ernest and Bobby and their children, two goats, two horses and pigs. There, about an hour and a half drive from Madrid, they bought a 3.5-hectare plot of land for 150,000 euros. Their dream is to build an eco-holiday park with self-built wooden houses, a small campsite, their own house and a vegetable garden.
But yes, things will not go smoothly without obtaining the necessary permits. “It makes you desperate,” he says in the broadcast. This has not changed over time, the couple reported on the website I’m leaving. ‘This summer our permit application was submitted to the county again. The tension is building to finally get the green light again. We are quietly hoping that it will actually work out and that we can really get the holiday park going this winter, cross-legged!’
In the meantime, they are not sitting still. They are working in their vegetable garden, have built a greenhouse so they can grow their own vegetables in the winter and are already making preparations when the permit finally comes. “We have already started laying the foundation for the camping pitches and sanitary building. We will also ensure that we are able to collect all the rainwater this winter in the pond created for the purpose.
Life in Spain is “very good”. “We enjoy the peace and space we have here. We have beautiful weather every day in the summer, and we can sleep outside at night and watch the stars,” write Vignand and Nienke. Living here has helped us relax more and be less impulsive. We enjoy the moments, the weather and each other more. We have a few deadlines to meet. We know that if we get the permit, we will work hard again. But we’ll do it with a touch of the Spanish mentality: mañana mañana.
So they take their time, but the dream is still there. “Within five years, we hope to become an active holiday destination where our guests can have a great time.”
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