Today is a sort of holiday here in VnG. Tomorrow is a national holiday so most business/people take today off as well and make it a long weekend (Puente). Public holiday days always a different feel for me and today is no exception. Everything seems quieter and at an even more relaxed pace. For me that’s no bad thing.
I’ve had quite a weekend so far.
On Saturday Laura and Guillermo had invited me out for lunch at a fairly new place in town. It is on the Rambla and is called El Raco. Many years ago, probably about 30 there used to be a cafe on the same site called ‘Bar 9 Oriente’ which we used fairly regularly and knew the owner fairly well. Of course my young lunch companions hadn’t heard of it – Too young!! Since then it has had many reincarnations, none being that successful that they have lasted. I’m hopeful for this one as it is quite different to the previous ones.
The whole place has been renovated. There are two areas for eating (as we ll as outside). We sat in the back where you can see the revolving pizza oven and watch the chef preparing and cooking, which I always find interesting. There were plenty of vegetarian items on the menu, which was in the style of a newspaper, and initially a little confusing (For me).
We started with a shared plate of Patatas Bravas which were not prepared nor presented like most places, which made a change. We also chose a dish of mixed tomatoes which were marinated and had slices of ginger mixed in. It was really tasty, although when it arrived the ginger slices looked like either ham or salmon mixed in. Luckily I had two tasters to confirm that it was neither meat nor fish! For main course we each chose a pizza and naturally did the same for dessert.
All in all a very enjoyable lunchtime, which we will repeat again sometime soon. I can thoroughly recommend the place whether you’re a red in tooth and claw meat eater, or a veggie.
Sunday was a very different day. I had arranged to meet Edith, Ingo & Max for a trip to Barcelona visiting their friend Fran and family. Fran is a tattoo artist. Some time ago I had mentioned to Edith about getting a tattoo in Tony’s memory (for want of a better expression). She told me about Fran and thus the visit to Barcelona. Edith also wanted to have one of her tattoos finished off with colours.
I had no idea what I wanted when I left in the morning, although I had thought that whatever I chose would include our names /initials. I didn’t want the traditional “heart” and “I love…” on my biceps, but something more personalised. I’d seen some designs & things on line that I liked, but nothing quite exact.. After chatting with Fran and looking at couple of images he went off and drew what we had discussed. He had captured what I wanted exactly. Our initials, a stylised heart and Yin/Yang design. I wanted yin yang included somehow because Tony was very much the yin to my yang or visa versa.
I was a bit worried about the pain, but Fran covered my forearm in some unaesthetic cream and I hardly felt the needles at all. All we had to do was wait an hour or so for it to take effect. To while away some of the time Ingo, Max and I went in search of a place for takeaway lunch. The only reason I mention this is because as we were leaving an old lady asked Max if he was out with his two dads, which I thought was really amusing, and a sign that Spain is truly moving forward.
During the tattooing a couple of tears came to my eyes, not because of the pain though, but when Fran started on Tony’s initials. So many things can have that effect on me these days.
So here it is… Fran’s work is amazing and he is quite the perfectionist… Let me know what you think. (This was taken as soon as it was finished so still looks a bit sore.)
Today it’s slightly sore, but Alberto gave me the name of a cream to get so I’ve been to the chemist and bought some. (I hadn’t been sure they would be open, luckily they were) As soon as I asked for it the pharmacist asked if I’d just had a tattoo. It must be popular! (And was a better option than getting the anusol that Jane said would help. Hahaha)