Europe | Spain | Andalucia | Sevilla – Reflections on Southern Spain
Spain has been an adventure. I have travelled to most of the towns here in Andalucia over the past 3 weeks with the exception of Cordoba. Sevilla is everyone’s favorite, it easily outshines them all. I loved Lisbon and central Portugal and just returned from a trip down to Tangier, Morocco and Gibraltor – both are polar opposites. After getting off the boat in Morocco, the signs are in Arabic and french and most of the women wear Muslim wraps with their heads and bodies covered. It is a whole other world there. Gibraltor on the other hand, is a bit of England in the midst of Spain which I just found it odd, slightly humorous as well as incredibly touristy. I have made many new friends here in Rota. Consequently, Ive been enjoying all the comforts of home including going to the gym, playing tennis, getting a Subway sandwich, drinking Mojitos, playing pool and having a regular grocery store.
Tomorrow I am taking the train to Madrid for the weekend before making my up to Barcelona. Here are a few comments…
1. I cant get enough sangria and olives. Green olives in garlic or herbs are served at most restaurants as a starter. I eat them daily and never seem to tire of them. Olive oil is served on most things rather than butter. For example, breakfast toast is eaten with olive oil poured on top. Specialty ham and fish are abundant and excellent, tapas reign. Southern Spain has many wineries and produces sherry, brandy and other liquors.
2. My time schedule has been thrown off and Ive had to allow the culture here to re-program me from my typical early to rise schedule. Nights are late; dinner is eaten well after 9 pm and more often than not, I have been eating around midnight and going to bed around 2 or 3 am. Since practically
nothing opens before 9 or 10 am, it is challenging to get an early start. The general hours for are 10 am – 1pm open, closed from 1-5:30 pm for siesta, open from 5:30 pm to either 7 or 9 pm. Consequently, you have to plan your day around siesta hours if you want to get anything done. No one is in a hurry to get any where or anything done. Life is just slow, relaxing and enjoyable in this culture.