The Old House
It was in the 1930s that our grandparents came from Batet and bought the house.
In the 40s there was a great rain storm. An enormous rock came crashing down, breaking through a very thick wall, making a hole in the roof and falling on our grandparents' bed, from which they had got up just ten minutes before.
In the 50s, after getting married, our parents settled in the village. Our grandparents' farmhouse was big, but it wasn't really a family home as more space was devoted to barns and cowsheds than to living in.
Father, even though he didn't like it very much, farmed. He worked the vegetable garden and the fields or picked potatoes and cut the grass in the meadows. Our parents had chickens, rabbits and about ten cows.
Life was not easy at all in those early years. When their children came into the world, the world of the village of Queralbs was not a very warm place. Winters were long, cold and with a lot of snow, they earned little from their harvests and selling milk and added to this was the fact that some of their cows died over the years due to lightning while they were out on the mountain: it was clearly not a very encouraging situation.
In the circumstances, it is not so surprising that our parents decided to go ahead with what then seemed a peculiar, even eccentric project, to convert that house, with so few comforts, into holiday accommodation for people from the city.
Bearing in mind that potential guests were practically unknown in that part of the world, far from civilisation, four hours' drive from the city of Barcelona, the idea may have seemed completely crazy, or at least that's what their friends and neighbours thought.
We'll probably never know how Father found his first guests, but we do know about his tenacity, strength and perseverance, and above all his belief and confidence in this dream. These, together with Mother's hard work and support, were what allowed him to carry on.
And the guests began to come along. Father went to meet them at the railway station in Queralbs. He told travellers on their way to Núria and acquaintances in the village and in other villages in the area, everybody, about the house. Slowly the house became known and slowly it changed. The barns and cowsheds were turned into rooms... the dining room was extended, they kept less cows... the first families to come spread the word, bringing other families.
The old farmhouse grew and grew and became an attractive guest house which our parents called "Pensió Masia Can Constans".
Today we, their children, carry on their work and try to keep up their spirit of hospitality and friendliness towards visitors.