Thursday, November 22, 2007

Seville - it doesn't have pigeons, it has doves!

After the disaster that was Budapest, I was hoping Seville would turn out better. And I have to admit it really did. No rushing to get to the plane, a few drinks on it and bugger all non-EU residents making passport control a breeze, we were in Seville, Spain.

Seville, Spain
Sevilla es gran y las mujeres hay, a pesar de todo son Americanos!
Seville is the artistic, cultural, and financial capital of southern Spain and more than two thousand years old. The passage of the various people instrumental in its growth has left the city with a distinct personality, and a large and well-preserved historical center. It has been fought over by the Romans, Portugese, French, Muslims and finally the Catholics in nearly all this time, and has finally been colonised by drunk American students.With Colombus setting off from Seville to find the New Land, Yank students flock to this place to work and learn Spanish in much the same way that Aussies do to the UK to learn public drinking and ‘flag gathering’.
Seville is much like the old city in Barcelona with its cobbled streets and beautiful old buildings from the 16th century. As Seville was the centre of the Spanish empire for trading with Africa and the Americas, much money was pumped in to it, meaning the buildings were not thrown up but meticously crafted. Also, being between France, Portugal and Africa, this place was taken more times than a drunk Kiwi at the Red Back on a Sunday, meaning many sets of defenses and extra sturdy buildings. Due to this constant occupation, the architrecture is an ecletic mix of Muslim, Catholic and, according to Scary Spices paternity test, even Eddie Murphy. This also has caused some real bastard child creations.
The main Seville Cathedral, Catedral de Santa María de la Sede, is one of the largest in the world and due to it being built in 1401, has seen more extensions than an episode of Our House, everytime the city was taken. To date, you can walk around the structure and in it, and see the dome and minarets of a mosque, the Star of David and the arches of a Catholic church. So much has it been changed that there are four pulpits where the priest may stand and a shrine smack bang in the middle. Enough history – yeah – let’s get stuck in to the tapas eating, sangria drinking, macarena dancing of the rest of the place!

Arriving in Seville we were blown away by how stunning the place is. All lit up and sparkling. Straight of to a tapas bar followed by…actually I can’t really remember. I think we may have ended up at an Irish bar. I’m really not too sure. But anyway. Friday was the walking tour of Saville and taking in all the sites. The Plaza de Espanya, Festival of Americas and everything in between. So after a day of touring, a siesta, and some more food, back on out to the friendly world around us. Deciding to cross the river to the local area of the city we were soon lost as to where to go out. This is where I took charge. Being there with two Brisbanites, I knew immediately if it wasn’t up in lights, on the beach or truly Brisvegas tacky, these boys wouldn’t know where to go. So donning my Melbourne hat we slipped down several back alleys, around a corner, under a box and tapped our left leg three times and there was a bar before us. Walking in it turned out that we had found ourselves a nice little shisha bar. Fernando, the waiter, knew there was something in the air that night, the stars were bright, Fernando – stoked up a strawberry shisha smoked through a bowl of dark rum, and we were off.
Well, that’s all I’m going to say about that night. After hobbling out of a bar bleeding on the pavement after a disagreement in the establishment, the less said the better.

The next day Toddy and I explored the fort of Seville. A combinaton of hung over and my injuries meant a slow day exploring the sites – although I did manage to get through an entire English breakfast in about 6.3 seconds. The main site to look at was the Seville Fort, popular for its oranges (Savillian oranges are famously exported to the UK to make marmalade). But yet, I was still hungry and tired. That’s when Bart’s guide to the morning after comes in.
First - find some food
Step two - hydrate
Step three - eat what you've found
Final step - sleep
The same night insued with us hitting the local scene outside of the main town (which basically involved us in a bar with 40 spanish men watching the football and trying to decipher what they were saying about us). Good times. Packing up the next day and finishing with some tapas, we made our way to the airport. But not before seeing Seville fashion at its finest.
Even getting home in London at 2am and having 4 hours sleep before work, I couldn’t shake my love of Seville. I thoroughly recommend the place. In fact, bugger Croatia, Seville is the place for my honeymoon. I said it the first time we walked in to the town and it is the perfect example of this lovely city - there is not a pigeon in sight. No winged rats like London. I shit you not, Seville doesn't have pigeons, it has doves. For more photos, click here.


At 5:07 AM, Anonymous Trish said...

Honeymoon barto? I knew you were always the romantic type...what guy goes out, gets drunk and says "this is where I want to go on my honeymoon..."???


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