Sunday, July 12, 2015

Final Day in Valencia

The trombone festival was over, and Doug was finally available to do some sightseeing.  We both had tired feet from all the walking we'd done the day before, so the first thing we did was ride around the circuit on one of those open air tour buses.  We peeked inside this lovely church before we got on the bus.

The Bullfighters Ring next to the train station, shot from the bus

Nothing in particular, shot from the bus.

Another view from the bus

Some door texture leading to the church below

Another beautiful old church

A statue outside the church

A human statue

More church carvings

This is not turning out to be a very interesting post.  We saw the entire town from the top of the bus and then we got off and had some crepes, and then we walked around the old town section, and I took a bunch of photos of the old streets, doorways, and graffiti, which is the same old thing I always do, but it's fun and I could do it for days on end.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

In Search of Paella...

Everyone we asked said that the place to get paella was at the beach.  They didn't say which restaurant, just "at the beach."  So off we went one evening during the time between the exhibit hours and the evening jazz concert.  We saw this rather remarkable looking synagogue on the way to the subway:

Here's the top of the building - I wonder if it is upper floors of the synagogue, or apartments.  There are lot of buildings that look like this in Barcelona - not so many in Valencia.

So we arrived at the beach and walked around for a bit before we started looking for a restaurant.

Since we didn't have any particular restaurant in mind, we had to randomly pick one from the many that were there on the south end of the boardwalk, fairly near the port.  Our paella experience was rather unremarkable.  We got the "traditional" version which has rabbit and chicken and green beans, and of course rice, among other things.  I didn't like the idea of eating a bunny, but it tasted okay I guess.  It was kind of difficult to tell which was the chicken and which was the rabbit because everything was cooked together to the point where everything had exactly the same flavor - the chicken, the rice, the rabbit, even the green beans, believe it or not.  It was a very nice flavor, but since I am the type who really enjoys little bursts of flavor variety in a mixed dish, it was somewhat disappointing.  But we still had fun.

This is the child prodigy trombone player from Spain who will probably be famous one day. Actually she's 16 years old, but looks like she's 12 or 13.   Right now I can't remember her name.  She played a set with Bart Van Lier from Holland.

Shame on me for not remember her name either, but this is an excellent trombone player from Britain who leads a group called the Soul Tubes.  She definitely knows how to work the crowd and get the audience partying.

Her group includes four other excellent trombone players from England.  They play mostly funk and rhythm and blues.  And they were great!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Valencia, Day Three

I spent most of the day wandering around in Doug's grandmother's old neighborhood, walking through part of the Jardines del Turia, and visiting some of the old town section of the city.  Most of these photos are of nothing in particular, just a bunch of pretty buildings I saw that show the beauty of the city.  I feel no need to be one of those scholarly tourist types because . . . I'm on vacation!!!

Beautiful Architecture

and palm trees

Valencia has some very wide boulevards and huge traffic circles.

In the Jardines del Turia with some of the towers from the old town section in the background.

Interesting trunks on these trees.

Roman ruins in the Jardins del Turia.  A river used to run through the center of the city and it flooded all the time and was a huge problem so they diverted it to a more convenient location and built these gardens the river had formerly been.

I'm probably not the only one who finds this amusing.

This is the Torres de Serranos, an ancient fortress on the north end of the old town area, near the Jardines del Turia.

The Valencia Flag

Fort carvings

Some views from the top of the fort

The next four photos are all in the same plaza where the Fountain "des Virgenes" is located.  There are four or five sidewalk restaurants there, the pink building above, the old cathedral, the fountain, and some orange and lemon trees.

Some more excellent graffiti.  Who knew I'd be seeing Gomez and Morticia today?

and this!

These flowers were EVERYWHERE!

Train station and bullfighting joint means that I'm almost back in "my" neighborhood.