Seville Cathedral from the courtyard

Thursday and Friday were actually a lot busier than just one thing, of course.

Thursday morning we wanted to go out for breakfast, but the rain was playing a game with us. Each time we thought the rain had ended, it would begin again. We decided that if we wanted breakfast we were going to get wet. We had looked up a couple of breakfast places that were up by the “mushroom” which is a wooden structure properly called Las Setas. When we got to the area, neither of the places looked appealing. We went back to a place called Doña Encarna where we had a snack on a previous visit. We had a good breakfast there. They have good churros and chocolate, so I was happy.

Sculpture of St Jerome (Torrigiano, 1525) in Museum of Fine Arts

We had planned to go to the Museum of Fine Arts but debated making the walk while we ate because of the rain. In the end we walked down Calle Martin Villa and Calle Alfonso XII to get to the museum. El Museo de Bellas Artes de Sevilla is one of our favorite museums. We have seen the collection every time we have visited the city and enjoy it each time. One is permitted to take pictures (sin flash, por supuesto), but I have given up trying to capture the images. I went in with three cameras but only took about 10 pictures. One of our favorites is Death of the Maestro, by Jose Villegas Cordero. I always take a picture (or 3) of that. For some reason, Patricia and I are both drawn to it. After a couple of hours in the museum, we walked back to the apartment for a little break. By that time, the clouds had cleared and the sky was blue and the temperature was warm.

A warm, sunny afternoon demanded ice cream so we hiked (can you say “hike” about walking in a city?) to the Olmo ice cream shop which we discovered on our first visit to Seville, years ago. On the way there, we encountered a noisy crowd and saw lots of police presence, including mounted police. Oh, oh. Trouble, we thought. Nope. Seville has two football teams and both were playing last night. [Not each other, fortunately.] the crowd was just supporting their teams. We ate our ice cream sitting on the steps of the El Salvador church, on the edge of a plaza which has cafés along two sides and is frequented by by lots of families with little kids. We enjoyed watching little kids chasing bubbles and trying to catch pigeons.

We got back to the apartment in time to watch some football and have a quiet evening. I put a map of our Thursday perambulations at the end of this post. Patricia thinks we walked about 8 or 10 miles, but it was actually just under 5. We were walking slowly and dodging raindrops most of the morning so perhaps if seemed longer to her.

Breakfast goodies at Doña Encarna

Friday morning was clear and the temperature was comfortable. We had timed tickets for getting into the cathedral at 11:15, which meant that, with a little planning, we had time for breakfast. Why does one need to “plan” for breakfast, you may ask? Well, there are hundreds of restaurants which serve breakfast within easy walking distance, so choices have to be made. Today we took the easy way. We chose to go back to Doña Encrna, where we ate on Thursday. Today it was nice enough–if a bit cool–to sit outside. No churros today. Instead, we shared a cheese carrot cake and some more healthy food. Since breakfast can take almost as long to eat as a mid-day meal, we made sure to get an early start, so we could get back to the cathedral in time for our slot.

I don’t know if I have mentioned it in our posts about Seville, but our apartment is very close to the Cathedral and the Alcázar on the west end of the barrio Sant Cruz, one of the oldest parts of the city. As you may have noted from the maps, our location is convenient for all the places we want to go.

The cathedral is another place we try to visit each time we are in Seville. It doesn’t change much between visits, but we always see something new. I tell myself that I am not going to take the same pictures I took last time, but the same things catch my eye each visit. As with the Mezquita in Córdoba, trying to capture the sense of space or age in an image is futile, but I hope that at least one image will surprise me. I created a separate gallery of images on the pictures page for the cathedral pictures. I’ll try to get some captions soon. As usual, we were overwhelmed. Not so much by the religious aspects, but by the architecture.

After a short break at the apartment to get our packing started, we went to another restaurant we have been visiting for years: Las Cantina Mexicana. When we got seated, one of the waiters came to our table, looked at us, and said “You have been here before. I recognize you.” We agreed that we had been going there since they opened and renewed our acquaintance. They serve real Mexican food, but in the form of tapas, so we shared 4 tapas for lunch. For once, I tried everything.

In the evening we went to La Casa del Flamenco and saw another tablao performance. The two dancers were the same ones we saw on Wednesday, but the show was much better. More packing is necessary before we leave at 9:30 tomorrow morning.

In the Cathedral

Maps for both Thursday and Friday are below. Please don’t tell Patricia we only walked half as far as she thinks.

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