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Published: April 23rd 2010
SDC12940Tuesday, April 13
Plaza d'Espagne, Seville
The night bus from Murcia to Seville. Eight hours of driving, driving, driving. Though I thought I'd be able to sleep, I couldn't. So I sat with PJ. Fifty kilometers outside of Seville (at around 5am in the morning) our bus broke down, and we pulled over at a 24hr rest stop cafe. I decided I was already up, so since there was no use in sleeping, I ate a little and had a Cola Cow, the brand of instant (not so good) hot chocolate served in Spain. After about an hour, our replacement bus arrived. We deliriously got on and watched as the sun rose during the last hour or so of the drive in Seville. From the bus station, it was a short walk to our hostel. We dropped our things off and then set out to explore. It was cloudy outside, and I was disappointed because I'd been hoping for sun everywhere we went!
We came across a park with a really fun looking playground...and yes, though we are 20-something's, we stopped and played around for a while. Fun! We stumbled upon the Plaza de Espana, a huge (and epic) semi-circular architecture with
beautifully painted tiles and red stone. From there, we found the Cathedral, which, like other Spanish cathedrals I've seen, follows no order or plan whatsoever. For free we were able to climb the tower. At the top, the view of Sevilla was lovely!
After all of our walking, we took a break at an outdoor cafe to eat some tapas. We were all tired from not sleeping the night before, and we didn't say much. However, a stroll along the river seemed to raise the moral. Not to mention that the sun came out in the afternoon, which really made a pleasant difference. However, by early evening I was exhausted (we all were), so were went back to the hostel to rest. I took a long nap, and they we all got ready to go out.
At the base of the Seville cathedral, a stage was set up with lighting and live music, and two dancers performed Spanish pieces. We watched for a while--I really liked it. And then we went to see if we could get in to a flamenco show at Casa de la Memoria. Everyone makes reservations in advanced because it's one of the best
in town, and it's got limited seating, but we figured we'd try anyways. The ticket guy told us we could wait and see if there ended up being any free seats, or if people didn't show up. So we waited, and I started to get kind of down watching all the people with tickets going in, because I really wanted to see this show, expecially in Seville, the home of flamenco! Two minutes before the start, the ticket guy said it should be good, and so we bought our tickets and we were in! There was a seat for Cyntia, and then Pierre-Jean and I sat in the back stairs with cushions that the ticket guy brought us. The lighting was dim, only two stage lights, and the light of floating candles which were lit in an iron basin with tropical flower heads. There was ivy growing on the walls.
The show started with three men in black pants and button up shirts entering. One began playing the guitar, and the other two were clapping . Then one of the clapping guys started singing, and the sound that issued from his mouth was like butter running down hot bread.
It was sad, the kind of sorrowful half-wailing that you hear in old Arabic music. I didn't know what he was saying, but I knew this guy was pretty sad about not being able to get with some chick. I imagined that for all that he was going on about, she must be something else.
The music intensified, and the singing continued. Then the woman came out in her flamenco dress and started dancing, with a proud expression on her face. She clicked her heals furiously on the wooden floor, and curled her hands like a vine through a trellis, upwards. Her face was contorted in a look of pain, as if she was going to cry. So it seemed that she really wanted to get with this guy, but that he just didn't know it. She danced for a long time, until the music became a little happier. Then the man who had been singing stood and they danced together passionately, stomping their feet to the rhythm of the guitar. It was a really powerful experience to watch.
That night, we walked back to the hostel before it got to late. Pierre-Jean and I went up to
enjoy the terrace, which looked out over the city, softly lit with purple and golden hues.
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