Ficklish Blog

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Agua de Valencia

(There´s something in the water here).

A few posts below, I talked about my plans for Spain - arrive in Barcelona, then spend all my time in the south. Well, it hasn´t exactly happened like that. I´m still in Valencia.

There just hasn´t been any reason to move on just yet. I´m in great hostel with excellent people, the weather is spectacular, the beaches are beautiful and the town is one I could (and have) spent hours wandering around in.

I´m actually having a holiday!

Mr Canadia (again, see below), was looking for a word the other night to describe that incredible serendipitous luck that befalls a traveller every now and again. You know - when you miss a train, but meet a stranger and get taken somewhere fabulous. Or when someone gets sick and stays longer in a place just so you can meet them. That kind of thing.

Well, I couldn´t think of a particular word for it, but a mad German we met gave it to us in German: "gluck einen Reisender", the luck of a traveller.

Whether or not it´s actually a term Germans use doesn´t worry me, I think it sounds cool.

I feel like Valencia is riddled with Reisegluck for me. I can´t believe how lucky I feel to be here, right now, having such an incredible time with such fun people.

A few highlights from recent days:

- The beautiful cathedral and the Holy Grail (yes, they chose poorly), some excellent galleries (including one with some installations you would love, TJ), more spectacular markets, and many hours spent sitting in front of fountains in sunny squares and gardens. Looking up as I wander the streets and gazing in quiet awe at the beautifully ornate architecture against the bright blue sky.

- Swimming in the cold, clear Mediterranean.

- The amazing food: tapas, paella, sangria, countless oranges.

- Sampling more of the excellent Valencian nightlife, and marvelling at how perfectly my body clock is suited to the Spanish way of life.

- Being taught how to pronounce the sentences on the dirty page of my phrasebook by a Portuguese geologist.

- Becoming an accidental chaperone to a bunch of sixteen year old Italian schoolgirls, only to have one of them hit on my 38-year-old English friend in a startlingly aggressive manner.

- Learning about the historical linkages between the Rastafarians and Hasidic Jews from a Jamaican architect (and having one guy say, ´and did they come up with that story before or after they started smoking pot?´).

- A lengthy discussion on the best way to achieve good sex while in a hammock.

- Discovering that one of our group is a very talented songwriter, and spending an evening drinking Spanish wine and listening, entranced, as he played for us.

- Being reminded that good people are everywhere, and that when something happens that knocks you around and fills your head and the people you love are far away (and you can´t get your stupid phone card to work), one of your new friends will see it, understand and step up with a hug, a chat, a drink and plenty of welcome distraction.

- Did I mention the hours in the sun on the beach? The sand is so fine that it gets everywhere, but it´s totally worth it. And the opportunity for people-watching is exceptional.

There´s a cocktail here called Agua de Valencia. Officially, it´s vodka, orange juice and cava, but in reality it differs from place to place. As I discovered while out with two Scottish girls and a Swiss guy of my acquaintance, it basically involved the bartender pulling down as many bottles from the shelves as she could carry, then mixing them all in some secret manner so that the end result tastes like the best orange juice of your life, then knocks you out. I loved it.

I´m trying to come up with ways I could keep drinking it here forever.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, jLo. I'm going to have to stop reading your blog so I don't just up and leave my life. I don't know anyone who deserved this more than you.

11:06 PM  
Blogger Veggie Friendly said...

It sounds like you've found more than one holy grail...

1:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Swimming in the cold, clear Mediterranean"

This reminds me of when I was travelling with Lindy and we were in San Sebastian having our first swim in the sea in god knows how long following a London winter. We jumped in the water and exclaimed practically instantaneously how warm(me)/cold(Lindy) the water was.


11:45 PM  
Blogger Greeny said...

Hey now. Baby, hey now.

6:24 AM  
Blogger lindylou said...

hey jules - so jealous of your fab adventure!! I was thinking of amy too as thats who I went to valencia with. I alway still have the coolest brown hand bag that I bought from zara in valencia! We really need more zara stories from you jules - first hand accounts of whats in stores at zara this year!!??

9:02 AM  
Blogger Jackie said...

J-Lo, your holiday sounds awesome. I too am going to have to start reading your posts with one eye half shut, so as not to have to see the full view of your holiday. The temptation would be far too immense and Ed would probably walk out on the docco - for real this time - if I pished off to check out beautiful people and cool installation art on the other side of the world to Darebin International Sport Centre. Please take pictures with words and/or cameras for me. And I can't wait until we read your NEXT blog from an undisclosed European location...;-)

7:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Be fair, J, t. (Geez, that looks weird innit?) There are many people who schedule a visit to Darebin International Sports Centre (or DISC, as those in the know call it) into their round-the-world trip.

12:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm even more jealous than your last post.

7:58 PM  

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