It is Saturday morning in Jerez. Looks like the weather is going to be cold in the mornings. It was 35 yesterday and 36 today. It warmed up rapidly yesterday and reached the mid-60s shortly after noon.
The cool mornings will provide an excuse for not starting too early.
Our apartment is literally across the street from el Fundación Real Escuela Andaluza del Arte Ecuestre (the royal Andalucian School of the Equestrian Arts). You have probably seen pictures of these well-trained horses. The good news for us is that we are going to see a performance next week so we won’t have far to go, but the bad news is that there are performances every day. It is a big tourist draw and at show times there is a lot of noise.
The apartment building is part of a block of apartment building and there is a school nearby. When the kids go by, there is a lot of chatter and at recess, loud sounds of kids having fun. We don’t get that at home so it is nice to hear—for a while. There are also lots of orange trees in between the buildings and flocks of noisy birds in the trees. Last night one flock of birds covered a tree and turned the sky dark when they all flew at the same time.
A couple of blocks away there is a little shopping center with a grocery store and a bakery. But it also has lots of other small stores for clothes, knitting, small appliances, flowers, cosmetics, and other necessities. Not a brand name store among them. This, with the exception of the school, is clearly not a tourist area.
Our first day back in Jerez was used to find places we knew from last year and to explore where this year’s flamenco performances will be held. There is only one new place for us. We are within easy walking distance of 3 of them and the fourth is just over a mile from us.
We walked down to the Plaza Arenal, which we use as a landmark, and explored from there. One of Patricia’s favorite restaurants was right where we left it last year, so we had a pleasant outdoor lunch. “Right where we left it last year.” You scoff, but one of the other restaurants we liked is completely gone; there isn’t even a storefront there any more.
I stood in line to pick up our tickets at the Teatro Villamarta. I managed to do the whole transaction in Spanish, even when there was a discrepancy. [Tengo cuarenta entradas, pero aquí solo hay treinta y cuatro. Gracias, Alejandro.] But I should also point out that I tried to pay 8 euros (ocho) for some bread when the clerk had asked for ochento (80 cents), so I’m still not that fluent.
We didn’t take many pictures yesterday, but here is one of Patricia, taken at the Albores restaurant.
I figured out a way to get GPS data so I can tag all of the pictures we take with location data. But there is an additional use for the data: I can use it to make a map of where we walked during the day. The first map is below.