Saturday, March 13, 2010

Friday, 5 March, and we’re off

The day of our Seville holiday to celebrate my 40th birthday finally arrived. We'd already taken Cat to the cattery the day before and had decided not to work today, in order to be able to pack and make sure we had everything we needed... including, unfortunately, a Jack In A Pack from Millets. This fold-down-into-a-small-bag raincoat is what we used to call a cagoule back in the day. They are super-sad, but those of you who remember the great wet Seville trip of 2008 will know we had to go prepared.

We left home at about 1:30pm after an early lunch, allowing plenty of time to get to Stansted airport. We were due to be there at about 4pm, and it usually takes about 90 minutes, but I wanted to leave an extra hour because the M25 on a Friday afternoon fills me with dread. As it happens, 90 mins was adequate, so arrived an hour early. Still, better early than late, I like to say. We kept as occupied as possible and finally boarded the plane at 5:45. I was the first passenger to board the plane, which I thought was fitting for my birthday trip.

On arrival, since we travelled hand luggage only, we were able to dash through customs (if one can ever really dash through customs) and grab a cab straightaway. While on the ride to the hotel I was able to practise my first bit of Spanish. "No es posible abrir la ventana?" I asked, noticing on this hot evening that I wasn't able to open the window to get some air. It seems he didn't quite understand ventana as car window, so I guess there must be a different word. Even so, he knew what I meant, flicked a switch up front, and I was able to breathe again.

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IMG_1476We arrived at the El Rey Moro hotel, checked in, checked out the room, and headed out for food. Cerveceria Giralda, formerly a hammam, is always our first port of call in Seville. By 11:30pm we were eating our first dishes of the trip: tortilla en salsa de comino (delicious), tosta de queso de cabra (also delicious), and huevas fritas. But the huevas fritas don't look anything like the fried eggs we've had there in the past. Bit odd...

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Ah, nota bene, my friends: Don't order huevas fritas if you want fried eggs. I've suddenly had the realization that it's a set of bollocks, fried. But they taste weirdly fishy, both in taste and texture. Red decided she can't eat them, but I plough on, aided by another cerveza. But even that didn't help me to finish them. As the waiter came for our plates -- only one of which was unfinished -- I asked him for clarification of what we had only half eaten. "Fish roe," he said in English, possibly embarrassed that I was pointing at my balls. "Ah, fish roe..." Phew!

Huevas fritas (detail)

As we sat there, chilling, we noticed people were starting to get turned away. It was only 11:50, so we guessed they must close at midnight. This was a surprise, but it forced us to get off our arses and have a wander around and back to the hotel. It had been a long day.

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IMG_1493On returning, we noticed for the first time that what should have been a double bed was in fact two singles pushed together. This isn't totally unusual in hotels, but they weren't even made up as a double; they were made up as two singles pushed together. A request to reception didn't yield much success due to a lack of Spanish on my part and English on his. "Ask tomorrow," I was told. "I've not been here long."

"Okay." Hasta mañana, then...

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7 Comments:

Blogger furiousBall said...

beautiful shots

13 March, 2010 13:45  
Blogger Milla said...

Ahhh so you are like Zorro and me, that as soon as we arrive at our destination, we go for food! Sorry about the bollocks in salsa, though.

Beautiful pictures. I like the first night shot VERY much.
Looking forward to read and see the rest!


Word verification: "promisen" -great!

14 March, 2010 10:38  
Blogger Candy Minx said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!

wow and what a treat...you know how I like hotel pictures!

What a beautiful looking spot and holiday.

Great to see you back...I've missed you!!!!

14 March, 2010 16:03  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Thanks fB.

Milla: Gotta eat immediately! Well, it put me off, thinking it was bollocks. Roe turned out to be slightly better, but by then I was already too schiffed.

Candy: Thank you! There will be more hotel pix. Watch this space!

14 March, 2010 16:07  
Blogger Four Dinners said...

Seville eh?

Well? I got The Five Bells in Harmondsworth for my 50th! So there...;-)

Crackin' pics mate. Some'at to treasure when you're no longer a youngster...;-)

14 March, 2010 19:37  
Blogger Milla said...

AHAHAHA *Aste
You wrote 'schiffed'!! Such a wonderful word :-D

15 March, 2010 20:21  
Blogger Martha Elaine Belden said...

gosh... i forgot how much yours and red's travel posts make me ache to travel. it's been so long for me. one of these days i'll have the money again.

and happy (belated) birthday, btw. i hope the rest of the trip was amazing! :)

18 March, 2010 15:23  

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