Caceres fiesta of San Jorge

Saint George or San Jorge (haw-hee) is the patron saint of the city.
Last night, muchas excitement. A reenactment of the story (which we don’t really know). It involved Christians, Moors, a dragon, Esmerelda, maybe unrequited love and st Jorge galloping in on his steed and setting fire to the poor dragon that had been paraded through the streets.
It was all very exciting.
Then there were fireworks in the square which were so exciting coz they were right overhead, colouring everyones

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Sexy Sevilla Saturday

A reflection on coincidences……
Tourist office at train station not open, so….
Went into hotel for a map.
She’d never heard of avenida da Sevilla (the road our hotel was on) and when she googled it, it was in a suburb 30km away. Bloody booking.com.
But (bloody booking.com) the booking hadn’t gone through, so we stayed at the hotel.
Just outside the hotel was a bus stop where these women in all different coloured and styled flamenco dresses were getting on the bus.
Our jaws dropped and we just watched for a while, thinking they must be off to work as dancers.
I couldn’t believe the dresses, earrings, make up and hair even in the kids. The little boys were all smart too in braces and with a red scarf as a belt.
We walked on, I saw these cool retro postcards, and while I was browsing c asked a lady where they were going.
“The ferry”…. Or something.
As I paid for the cards c said “feria?” As the cards were old adverts for Feria de Sevilla -a week long celebration in April. Biggest night- the Saturday!!
We got a Spanglish run down from the guy in the shop but still didn’t really know what we were going to. An expo? A trade fair? A competition? No. The Easter show but muy muy cooler!
On the bus, still not quite sure what we were going to, we met manuela, her husband and baby Juan. Manuela had a gorgeous green spotted dress on. They honeymooned in Australia. She explained it to us.
It is a week long celebration, set up like an old town with streets and casetas (little bars in pavilions).
Most casetas are private, bought by people who invite their friends or clubs.
We wandered through the “streets” admiring the horses and carriages, costumes and casetas and saw these two women putting their money away.
The flamenco dresses have a purse sewn into the ruffle. We admired it and began chatting as they spoke English. They have known each other since they were 10 at scouts, who meet at the feria every year. They said it is a festival that is about the beauty of the women so they all take the chance to wear the dress. The men just accompany.
They dance the sevillanas (a type of flamenco) eat and drink “too much” and it is a celebration after the solemnity of Easter.
They invited us into the caseta (a big privilege) introducing us to Angel. He was the informal boss of the caseta, a policeman by day. He bought us ribolitos the traditional drink -white wine and sprite. But strongly cautioned us (in Spanish) that we should be careful and eat. The girls told us traditional food was fried fish (marinated in vinegar first) and flamenque meat rolled with egg and peppers and, yes fried.
That was our food because so far all we had seen was candy floss for sale unless you got in a caseta.
Anyway, it was brilliant, we ate, watched the dancing, listened to the music and castanets. Colette had a quick castanet lesson from these 2 other women inside. They were amazing, dancing and playing, really playing the castanets.
We headed out after an hour or so and saw the posada-big entrance door lit up – it has a unique design each year, then headed home (at midnight as everyone still flooding in).
I remembered as well that we weren’t even going to go to Seville I just had a lot of trouble booking the trains.
Heading home, again very lucky. Which hotel were we staying at its not on the key (fortunately near the station) which bus do we catch? where’s our map? What street is the hotel on???? How do you even say station in spanish???Whoops.
Anyway, with luck and miming we got on the right bus, went past the station, recognised the street, got off the bus right outside the door. You can’t ask for more than that!
For breakfast at 1pm we were a bit limited. Went to a cafe where you ordered the coffee, but went across the road for the food. Mmmn fried again. But C found a new word churros!

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Oh my Gaudi, I love Barcelona.

Yes, I am trying to find a pun for every entry.
Spent the morning at guell park, Gaudi designed park just up the road. Did a bit of camino training with vertical climbs and stairs through the back streets (and I made C carry the backpack!)
We are staying in a little flat in Gracia a cool suburb about 15 min walk from centre. This flat is warm, has natural light and room to swing 3-4 cats, much better than palazzo in Genova.
We had a wonderful night last night wandering into town, after mooching and doing washing (yay!!!) we came across an antique market and did a bit of bargaining lashing out on a folding corkscrew (we have been poking corks in like we are at uni) our only souvenir so far (apart from the scorpa cards, current score R 61, C 57)

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Museum orgy begins….. Our challenge, should we chose to accept it. To see 22 museums in 48hours.

Well, we managed 11!

First we had a wonderful walk from Genova central to Nervi- about 12/13 Kms. Mostly along the seaside and it was a beautiful day. We walked past all the begni- private beach clubs where a few brave souls were sunning themselves despite it still being pretty chilly. we walked for a while then had a packed lunch stop at a beach where we watched kids being kids; throwing rocks into the sea, getting their shoes wet and being told off by their mums.
Then after another hour C declared it could be gelato-o’clock. Now we have been very restrained on the gelato front, I’d like to say because I’ve been flexing my “will power muscle” but really because its been so cold.
We went into the shop and C said she wanted the same as this girl had just had-stracciachella (possible miss-spell) or choc chip.
The guy said “we’ve run out” C’s face fell
“But if you can wait 5 minutes, I’m making some more” !!!?!?!!!!

He bloody was too (see pic) he melted choc on the stove and stirred it into the fresh vanilla he’d made. Amazing!
We were two happy girls, coz when you lash out, you want it to be good!

-Genova gallery of modern art- modern art from Liguria
-Wolfsonian-furniture, advertising and propaganda art from 1920-1950s.
-Palazzo Rosso, Bianco, Tursi- art and lush palaces.
-Antarctic museum of Italy- apparently their speciality is meteorites (you learn something everyday!)
-Galata Maritime museum including submarine visit.
-Maritime museum of Pegli again in a lush palazzo.
-Ligurian archeological museum in Pegli – Neolithic to medieval (and where the guide asked us if the aboriginal cave paintings included pictures of “ooofohs” AKA UFOs or aliens. We didn’t want to disappoint, so said, yes probably!
-Treasures of the cathedral including the arm of st James and st Catherine, a piece of the true cross and some of Mary’s hair. Love it!
-Diosese museum in an amazing medieval building with the “blue jeans of Genoa” blue dyed fabric pictures of Jesus’ life. The material thought to be predecessor of denim.

Today just spent getting to Milan (ah trenitalia) for our flight to Barcelona tomorrow. Ciao italia it’s been bueno.

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