I´m at an internet cafe in Jerez, Andalucia, which is in the south of Spain. It´s difficult typing on a Spanish computer, so please forgive any typos, lack of caps, etc. It´s gorgeous here, the streets are ancient, beautiful, with cobble stones and people strolling everywhere. I arrived last Friday in Madrid, which was a bit overwhelming at first, but I managed to find my way alone on the excellent subways. I will say that my idea of putting fun on my list is not easy for me, since I almost never drink alcohol, I try to watch what I eat and get plenty of exercise. Since we´ve been here I´ve been drinking beer, wine, sherry (that made me the most drunk). I´ve eaten chorizo, ham, pork, steak, eggs, desserts and I have to say that the food here hardly resembles anything I eat at home. Is everything fresher? Whatever the reason, it´s delicious.
We went to Segovia on Saturday to visit friends of Steve´s and Segovia is a gorgeous city. We went out at night to a bar and restaurant a few miles out of the city and the castle and cathedral on the hills were lit up and stunning. I will add some photos as soon as I can figure out how to do it.
It´s been very interesting meeting all the friends Steve has had for years - Gines and Vicky in Segovia (and their cute beagle, Sparky, who made me miss Lucy and Lola.) We met a curator one night in Madrid who had had a few too many drinks, so that was challenging. Steve couldn´t understand a word she said, but I did pretty well. Last night we met Steve´s friend Norman, an American who recently moved to Jerez after twenty years in Madrid and today we had lunch with Estella (she´s from the Bronx). She recently published a book about the origins of flamenco. Each meeting generally lasts about three hours and includes a great deal of eating and drinking. I was feeling a bit stuffed every day, so I´ve cut back on the alcohol and food consumption, but it is a very interesting way of life. Work is generally considered something that is done a few months a year and hopefully doesn´t get in the way of socializing. As an American, I feel a little guilty. I read the Times on-line and worry about everything that´s happening in the world, even though I know that I put fun on my list and for the next six days I should just have another tapas and a beer.
More to follow. Tomorrow we go to the White Towns in the mountains. We are spending the night in Ronda. This is all a dream for me, having never been to Spain before. Friday through Tuesday we will be in Sevilla. I feel very lucky. Spain is muy fantastico!