After breakfast we went for a spot of retail therapy - John had managed to keep me away from the shopping area yesterday but today I was determined to take a look. The shops were the same as in most cities across the world, but we spent an hour or so browsing - that was my limit!
From here we set off towards the Pillars of Hercules, (almost certainly not the real ones!), which are set in a large square full of plane trees and coffee shops. It was then a long walk back through the back streets of Seville, and also unintentionally via the red light district, back to the Jewish quarter for a bit of souvenir shopping and lunch. Wandering through the small streets and alleyways gave a great insight to local Sevillano life, the residential areas have small squares, and almost all have bars dotted around the place as well as a church, and possibly a monastery or nunnery as well.
Local Seville (with church in background)
John with the PIllars of Hercules
We both fancied paella for lunch and saw a restaurant serving this and went in - it wasn't until we read the full menu that we realised we had gone to an Italian restaurant, in Spain, for paella - we were lured in by the air con and generally cool interior! It was very good though.
This afternoon after a wander through the Jardins Murillios in daylight, we decided that as we were on holiday, that we would go went back to the hotel and chill by the outdoor pool - it was cloudy today and a bit cooler, about 35-40 degrees and quite pleasant, but as soon as we got to the pool the sun came out and an hour was the most we could manage prior to a siesta.
We had booked a flamenco show for the evening - we had tried to avoid a show that was too touristy but that is practically impossible here. The show was excellent,very dramatic and emotional - the songs are like country music - wife/husband has left, dog has died and beer gone off! Although we couldn't understand the language it was clear from the tone used and the facial expressions that they weren't singing about happy times. Most of the songs are about the oppression of the gypsies and have been handed down from 18th century Andalusian Gypsies, and others tell of love, hate, deceit etc... Hopefully while we are in Spain we will find a more local bar with a less touristy flamenco performance as well.
Just as an aside, when we were in Ireland last year we found that many boats from the Spanish Armada had washed up there leaving a large Spanish influence in and around the southern coast of Ireland, when you see flamenco you can almost see where Irish dancing has come from - lots of foot movement and dramatic expression!
After the show we crossed the river to Triana, the old gypsy quarter, for tapas in a very local bar where no English was spoken despite it being on the tourist map. By this stage in the day we were getting a bit tired and realised that according to our pedometers we had walked 9.5 miles and we still had to get back across the river and to the other end of town to the hotel, and decided to call it a night!
The Triana bridge