Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunny Sevilla

We arrived in Sevilla after 10 whirlwind days travelling about some of the biggest cities in Europe and all I wanted to do was rest and so after we checked into our hostel we proceeded to take the day off, simply eating some greasy tapas washed down with red wine in a sweet little plaza filled with orange trees and going for a walk through the labyrinthine streets of Sevilla. This has been our first stay at a hostel during this trip and possibly Ashley’s first hostelling experience. It was a great relief having other people around to spend some time with and allowing us to have some time away from each other ;) The garden backpacker became our home for what was originally supposed to be two but grew to four nights. It is a lively, brightly coloured place with sky lights, a roof top terrace, a large kitchen, beautiful garden and free sangria every night.

It was not out of an indescribable love for Sevilla or the garden why we stayed for four days, but for the pleasurable opening of the skies and an intense down pour for two days which allowed us to rest and rejuvenate in a relaxed and warm city in Southern Spain. Though perhaps our drinking a little too much one night with an American and a French man subsequently leaving me in a brutally hungover state which not even the exquisite Arab baths and there different pools and steam rooms could relieve. My only cure was some ibuprofen and rest followed by some tv watching.

After these days of recovery, we set out to discover Sevilla and all it had to offer. A truly enchanting city, the quintessential picture of Spanish life filled with slow days mixing large portions of booze with tapas and small portions of work. The buildings are amazing and everything seems more exotic than most European cities. This is no doubt to the fascinating history between the Romans, the Barbarians (aka the large white people who came from the North and could not speak latin, which I am clearly one of according to our tour guide), the Muslims, Jews, and Catholics. Each people built upon each others successes and mosques were turned into churches as the Jews and Muslims were thrown out by the inquisition. This city tells a fantastic tale of acceptance and fear of the other. The free historical tour we went on was excellent and my inner anthropologist was completely enthralled as I walked from room to room in Alcazar as it’s room change from Arab to gothic and on and on as different rulers had controlled the city.

The one thing I must say I found lacking in Sevilla was the food, tons of ham, cheese and white bread. It was just too much for my body to handle and I was incredibly thankful for having access to a kitchen where I lovingly and joyfully prepared food for Ashley and some of the lovely people we met in the hostel from the four corners of this marvellous world of ours.

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