Today was one of those days where one had a choice. Hang around in the hotel, or go in to Sevilla, using Antonio, our driver, as a large taxi service, paying him 4 € a head for the return journey (he was supposed to be having a day off), leaving at 10 a.m. and returning at 3 p.m. However, the lure of lucre was strong – he must have cleaned up in excess of 150 €. Nice work. Enough probably to pay his speeding fine…..
We’d been dithering about which option to go for, but what swayed it was the thought of being stuck in the hotel for hours. So we decided to go into town, but vowed that we wouldn’t stay in Sevilla for 5 hours. We’d return to the hotel earlier by taxi or Uber. So many others said that.
How wrong we all were.
We’d been tempted by the thought of a cruise on the Guadalquivir River, the same one as in Cordoba. Colin led us all down to the riverside and got us booked in for the 11 a.m. cruise.
Paying for this cleaned us both out of cash, so we went ATM hunting. Found one, but got ripped off with fees, much to my disgust. Not exchange charges, just bank fees. Bastards.
Boarded the cruise boat to find it already packed. We could only find two seats on the port side, which meant that I was sitting partially in hot sun.
Fortunately, the boat moved only about a quarter of a mile upriver before turning round and heading in the opposite direction, so I was then in the shade.
Pleasant enough, but not really worth the 20 € we paid, in my opinion.
It was about midday when we disembarked, and it was once again very hot. We had the vague idea of revisiting the Alcazar to see the gardens…..
We found a nice shady spot in a little square on the way to the Alcazar, and settled down for a drink. Behind us was a party of American lads who had obviously been refreshing themselves for a while, so were fairly boisterous.
We were served very promptly, and I asked for a large beer. The waiter pointed at one of the glasses being used by the Americans and said “Larger than that?” I assented. Jean went for a fresh orange juice.
This is what I ended up with…..
We then started to feel peckish. Guess which way this was all going…..
I wasn’t feeling particularly hungry, but the waiter mentioned that they offered a “very nice” steak and chips. I went for that, and Jean had a tuna salad.
The steak was absolutely delicious, one of the best I’ve ever had. Jean will confirm that as well…. A red wine was also offered and partaken of. Fabulous.
So passed a lovely mellow hour and a half.
Reluctantly, we left and decided to try and visit the gardens, even though we only had an hour left before returning to the coach. There was a large queue outside, and there was no option to just visit the gardens. Tickets would have cost 13.50 €, so we walked away.
Just a little further on, we discovered a very nice little park.
Made it back to the bus and, unsurprisingly, found that virtually everybody else had occupied the 5 hours in Sevilla in various ways.
It’s a really nice place. Historic and atmospheric.
The bus took us back to the hotel. Jean had a kip whilst I wrote this up.
After dinner, we, plus another 20 or so, departed for a flamenco evening, held in a theatre on the Expo 92 site. As usual, places like this are simply neglected after the event, and it was sad to see the weeds growing up between the flagstones.
We entered this very quaint old-style theatre and found ourselves very cosily seated on really quite uncomfortable chairs.
What followed was an enjoyable, well-executed, energetic and noisy show. I didn’t have a clue what the plot was, and the guitars, although well played, sounded very samey. The singing, which was presumably describing what was happening, merely sounded like caterwauling, but the dancing, to my untutored eye, was superb. Nobody seemed to put a foot wrong, and there was very appealing sexiness to some of it.
There was a large group of Orientals in front of us, some of whom were illegally videoing the proceedings and obstructing our view rather. Still, an enjoyable night seemed to be had by all, although the seats were uncomfortable and far too close together.
Back to the hotel for a final nightcap and bed.
Tomorrow should be a less full-on day. We will see.