Protection. Safety. A Place of Refuge.
The word BOLIMINI comes from the Valencian Language in Eastern Spain, and is a name given to the red soil that is common in the area, high in iron. The soil has been used since pre-Roman times for everything from painting to farming. There is a cave in this region called The Cave of Bolimini, which sits on my family's land. As you enter the cave, it opens up into a massive cavern, at the bottom of which is a man made basin, carved out of a large piece of stone. My grandfather made this basin, and placed it underneath a large stalactite, so it could capture the slowly dripping fresh water. In the years 1936-1939, the Spanish Civil War raged. Ceaseless bombing drove the 800 residents from the nearby hilltop village of Vilafames to gather their things, and take the 1 hour walk to the cave. One of these walkers was my grandmother and her sister, young girls at the time. The residents of the village lived in this cave for months, drinking water from the basin and seeking shelter from the war. Nationalist troops would occasionally knock at the cave opening and ask for someone, letting them know they would be led out and shot. The villagers always replied, "he that you seek is not here right now". Due to the sheer darkness of the interior of the cave, Nationalist troops would always have to concede and be on their way.