Segon día a Valencia!

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August 27th 2009
Published: August 27th 2009
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We had set our alarm for 8 the next morning, but upon waking up decided it was best to reset it for nine. At this point supposedly Chris pushed it a bit later to 9:15. When I finally woke up I had an uneasy feeling that it was a bit later than it seemed. Looking at my computer and seeing 11:56 confirmed that. At that point I jumped out of bed, since, well, WE HAD 4 MINUTES TO CHECK OUT. I quickly called reception to ask for an extension but due to the place being booked we needed to get out immediately. Despite this he then said to take 25 minutes if we needed it. Um, ok? We brushed our teeth and packed up as quickly as possible, managing to leave the room by 12:17. Phew. This sleeping in of hours knocked out 3 hours of tourism we had planned earlier, so it was time to grab a bite to eat and plan our next move.

For a late breakfast we ended up at one of my favorite Spanish chains, Rodillas. They have some other options, but the best thing to do is just buy a combination of half-sandwiches with fun Spanish fillings. Our choices consisted of gulas con queso (baby eel with cream cheese), champiñones, anchoa, y pimiento (mushroom, anchovy, and red pepper), pavo con manzana (turkey with apple), and pollo curry (chicken curry). So good and very inexpensive! Next we ran a few errands, namely getting a big bottled water, gum, and purchasing our tickets for Inés’ village, Alcoi, for 5:30 that evening. Twenty minutes later we were ready to move on to the Ciutat dels Arts I Ciencies, the ¨City of Arts and Sciences¨, Spain´s biggest museum complex consisting of an oceanarium, science museum, art museum, and much more all in this incredible space-age-looking architecture.

The bus cost a mere €1.25 and took us to the massive complex in maybe 15 minutes. The only problem with such a huge complex surrounded with tons of concrete is that you feel like you are walking in the desert it gets so hot. The buildings are surrounded by a number of shallow pools but it isn’t as if you can swim in them. Since we were a bit pressed for time, we only had time for one of the exhibits, and since Chris apparently hates aquariums (my hands-down first choice), we opted for the Science museum. It was the closest and at €7 for general admission, reasonably priced. It was, well…underwhelming. The place is set up like an exhibition hall with two floors of, well, exhibitions, from a part on Spanish ecology to a section on the science and history of drug addiction. Most of the things are hands, on, which is nice, so we got to do a bunch of fun sensory things like matching scents and even using a little camera to microscope and project our pores (gross, I know). After perhaps an hour of that we headed outside to catch the bus back to the city center.

For lunch we thought it would be fun to hit up the Mercat Central, an absolutely massive market place that is said to be the largest food market in Europe since 1928. Well naturally it was closed, presumably for the daily siesta, so we instead opted to climb the tower of the Cathedral to get a supposedly spectacular view of the city. Again, we failed after instead following some signs for these towers of some sort that took us to essentially nowhere. At this point we were going to have to return to the hotel for our bags we had said we were leaving for 4 hours, so instead meandered back looking for a place to grab a quick lunch. I hated basically every place we walked by, so we ended up settling for the small café near our hotel. Informed the kitchen would be closing relatively quickly, we quickly put in an order for two cañas (beers), a bocadillo de jamón y queso (ham and cheese on a baguette), and a bocadillo de tortillas mallorquina (an omelet with Mallorcan sausage on a baguette). It was really tasty and just what we were looking for.

Around 4:30 we grabbed our bags and walked over to the train station for our 5:20 train to Alcoy, which is located further inland between Valencia and Alicante, the region’s two major cities. After sweating bullets waiting for the train, we boarded around 5:10 and settled into two fairly comfortable seats in the air-conditioned chair. I’m really hoping that outside of the major cities I am able to hear more Valencià spoken. Despite its presence on most public signage, I only heard perhaps two conversations in the language. Ironically I’ve heard more Bulgarian spoken here than the region’s own native language! Oh well...Next stop, Alcoy!!!

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27th August 2009

I'm so glad you finally get to wear your capris! Valencia looks beautiful. I'm with you on the aquarium; they're so fun. Maybe you'll get to go next time! ;-)
27th August 2009

Does anyone eat a salad?
All that ham, all that seafood! It's making me gag!

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