Monday, October 11, 2010

Our day in Seville

Today we decided to head out early as we wanted to find a Laundromat.  We met for breakfast and then went back to our rooms to get our dirty clothes.  The desk clerk yesterday had told us that there was a laundry in the shopping center, about a ten minute walk from the hotel.  We arrived at the shopping center just prior to 10 AM.  Most of the stores opened a t 10.  We didn’t see a laundry listed on the shopping center map, so we asked the lady at Starbucks.  She said “right there” and pointed across the mall. 
It wasn’t open yet; there was a canvas “curtain” across the front of the store, so we waited a couple of minutes until it did open.  Oh dear.  It was a dry cleaner.  Kristina and Lori asked the lady if she spoke English; she nodded no.  They showed her the phrase book for self service laundry and she shook her head no.  So, we lugged our bags with our dirty clothes back to the hotel.  Rick Steves is going to hear about this!
Lori and I tried searching online for a Laundromat, but we did not find anything close by.  We were burning daylight, so we dropped the clothes washing idea and headed for the metro.  This metro is NOT nearly as easy to use as the one in Barcelona.  First of all, the person translating for the ticket machine is not a native English speaker.  It was very confusing.  We finally bought a ticket for 8 “jumps” and watched other people enter the gates.  In Barcelona, you inserted the ticket; here you just placed it on the lighted logo.
Down we went, into the earth, to find the train.  We needed to go two stops to the station nearest the Seville Cathedral.  We managed to board the train and exit at our stop.  However, we could not exit through the gate.  ???  We watched others and they scanned their ticket, like we did to enter the station.  Huh?  You have to pay to get OUT??  Well, apparently you do, so we scanned our ticket and it released us.
The Cathedral was fairly easy to locate.  We went in the direction we thought we should go for about a block and then you could see the spire, so we knew that we were on the right track.  This is a much busier area than where our hotel is located.  Lots of tourists, gift shops, horse drawn carriages and such.   There is an above ground train that is electric and very quiet.  One has to watch for it as you walk down the street.
We stood in line to enter the cathedral.  A couple in front of us started talking to us.  They were tourists from Madrid.  I think that he was having fun using English to talk to us.  We asked her about Laundromats and she said that they did have them, but as she was also a tourist, she didn’t know where one was in Seville.
We entered the cathedral, the third largest in Europe.  It was very beautiful and very big.  For a bit, we lost Danielle, but we luckily, we found her.  Kristina, Lori and I walked up the ramp 35 floors, to the bell tower.  Oh my gosh!!  I had to stop a couple of time, but I made it.  I would NOT have made it if there had been steps.  I think they should do segwey rides to the top!!  The view was great and I was glad that I made the effort to hike up.  Plus, it was a good workout for my legs, which are very sore after all of the steps and down hill hikes in Barcelona.  Next time we plan a trip, I think we should all go to St. Joe twice a week for about three months and go up and down the bluff stairs about  three or four times each visit, to get in shape!
We were now ready for lunch.  We exited the cathedral via the gift shop (of course) and found a restaurant across the street.  When we asked about a table inside, the waitress said, “Arriba”.  Hey, we knew that one, it means “Up”.  So we followed the waiter upstairs.
We all ordered agua, another word that we all know now.  Kristina and I shared some chicken paella, Lori had a salad (not the one she wanted, but apparently the waiter didn’t understand) and gazpacho; Danielle had chicken.  Oh, Kristina also order olives and I tried one.  I must say that I didn’t like it any better than the one I tried in Greece.
When we finally managed to pay for lunch (it just doesn’t work to try to have a quick lunch in Spain) we headed out for a park to find a geocache.  Jay had entered the coordinates for this one prior to our departure.  With a bit of searching, Lori found it!!  Hurrah!!  Watch out Mel Fisher!!  We are on the job!
We went from there to find another geocache that was very close by.  We searched and we searched and we searched.  Mel, your job it safe…we never found that one.  After finally admitting defeat, we headed for the river.  It is sure a good thing that Kristina and Lori can read those maps.   We found a beautiful river walk and strolled along it to the bull fighting ring.  We were not able to actually get in to see the ring, but we did see the gift shop.
After that we sat and enjoyed the river front for a bit.  Then we walked back towards the cathedral to find the location for our flamenco show.  We located it but still had some time before the show, so we walked up the street and discovered that we were at the cathedral on the street we arrived on.  We sat and watched people go by until time to go back for the show.
The flamenco show included a drink and tapas.  We sampled sangria again.  We had a cold plate of pork “things”; then three hot dishes.  We think one was fish; one was perhaps cabbage and scallops and the other was pineapple wrapped with ham.  For dessert we had orange sherbet on a cookie with a red sauce under it.  The show was very good.  There were three female dancers and two male dancers, three men who sang and three who played the guitar.  We all thought it might be more interesting if one could understand what the singers were saying.  It was all very anguished, energetic and fun.  The audience yelled “Ole” and clapped loudly after each performance.
Once the show was over, we headed back towards the cathedral and found our metro stop. We had to buy another ticket (because the 8 jumps we bought were used up due to having to PAY TO EXIT.  That is sooooo stupid).  So we bought another ticket and jumped back on the metro for the ride home.  The stop is about two blocks from the hotel, so it was a nice walk from the metro stop back to the hotel.
Tomorrow, we pick up the car and then Danielle will be driving us around until the day we fly to Madrid.  Buenas noches from Seville.


  1. I shall be eagerly awaiting the next post, to hear how the "driving around" goes. It does sound like you've gotten a LOT of exercise and have had some good meals. Take care and do enjoy!

  2. Food sounds delish on this trip. Hope the driving around goes okay!

  3. I'm looking forward to your description of driving. Will it be city or countryside?

    Have to agree that you are getting your share of excerise along with great sounding food.

    Ann, got the postcard today. There was no stamp on it. It did have a postmark stamp from Barcelonia. Maybe that is all they use. At any rate. Thank you for the effort.

    Haven't seen my other comments so I must be doing something wrong.

    Have fun.

  4. Que tal? I would think driving in Spain isn't all that different from driving in upstate New York or wherever there are some mid to small size mountains. At least you don't have the confusion of England or their former colonies, like India, where the driver sits on the right side of the car. And some good skills at reading directions in Spanish.