Friday night Ashley and I went out with some friends to a small bar. We were crammed into the back corner in the upstairs, the ceiling just about touching my head. Ashley and I have to basically crawl to get back there. The walls were wooden with framed pictures of friends of someone's on every square inch of it. At the table next to us were two men, one of whom pulled out a guitar. We got a private concert of classic Spanish guitar playing. Ashley and I had to look at each other often for reassurance that we were not in a dream. We met some UGA friends at a dance club and boogied on the dance floor. The waiters we had gone out with from the night before were at the same club and had a mutual friend with the friends we had come with. Small world! Un mundo pequeno! It was a wonderful night.
Saturday's day trip to Requena was also wonderful. Requena is a small village about an hour inland from Valencia. We took the train through the Spanish country side, passing what looked like sink-holes. There were mountains in the distance and an overall desert-like landscape, orange sand and rocks with scrubby bushes scattered around. We went to a wine-tasting, my first. The whole complex smelled like wine and we were led into a room with stacks and stack of barrels, patiently holding the future products of the next room. Stacks and stacks and rows and rows of corked wine bottles. The wine waits there some more and then goes to the tasting room. We walked around the village and there was a small outdoor market. There were tons of people dressed in costumes to celebrate Carnival. The little fellow in the pictures is dressed as "Spiders man". We walked around the historic district, which in this case means it's THOUSANDS of years old. So much to see every day!
Last night, three of us went to a small concert of a band called Emma Get Wild from Valencia. I had read a review of them in a small magazine and reportedly they sound like Wilco. We had to check them out. The pub they were playing in was small and packed. They did kind of sound like Wilco, but the lead singer was a girl and she was Spanish. They sung in English, great lyrics with no accent really. They had a country, folky feel. I was reminded of home, being in a small bar seeing this band. We called it an early night and I feel completely rested this morning. Later today we are going to the beach, and hopefully back to that restaurant we went to last time. I look forward to the good food and good company!
The cathedral picture is in Valencia. This cathedral is about a five minute walk from where I live. It houses the only officially recognized Holy Grail. Pretty unreal...