Friday, June 15, 2012
Things have been rather low key the last few days. Tuesday we had lunch at El Molinón and that gave us a chance to catch up with Wilma and Quique. We had a rather light lunch because we were going to have dinner with Brian, Ofelia and their daughter, Olivia. Olivia has graduated from St Andrews this year and will be returning at the beginning of next week for the graduation ceremonies. Brian’s parents are flying in to Valencia to spend a few days here and then the family will fly off to Scotland on Sunday. We arrived around 8:00 and sat on the terrace and chatted for a while. At 9:00 we headed out to a nearby restaurant called El Rus, which is notable for its sandwiches.
We ordered several appetizers, one that featured sundried tomatoes with a variety of toppings to add to them, a cream of garbanzos and an order of shrimp skewers. The shrimp skewers never arrived and that sort of highlighted the problem we encountered here, to whit, horrible service. When we told our server that we never received the shrimp her response was, “You should have told me.” If she had bothered to come by the table to see if all was in order we would have told her, but she somehow seemed to have faded into the woodwork. We ordered a variety of sandwiches. Brian had the hamburger; Olivia had a chicken sandwich; Susan and Ofelia shared a sandwich that featured smoked tune and I ordered the shish kebab pita. The pita was disappointing because rather than being filled with slices of lamb they appeared to have used lamb crumbles.
We passed on dessert and coffee and decided to head back to Brian and Ofelia’s place for coffee and magic. I performed several effects, one of which I had learned the previous night at the Colombini lecture. Susan was quickly fading and so at 11:00 we decided to call it a night and Brian, once again, was kind enough to drive us home.
Susan left the house early on Wednesday to meet up with Jordi Morera and go with him to the Central Market as he shopped for the elements of what would be the day’s menu at Carosel. She spent the rest of the morning and part of the afternoon chatting with him and taking more than two hundred photos for what will be her next blog post. It seemed logical to have lunch there so, after our new refrigerator was delivered and I had transferred everything from the old refrigerator to the new I made my way to the restaurant.
We ordered the menu of the day and we started with a cream of corn soup, a deconstructed tortilla española, a coca topped with two kinds of sausages and an escalivada. We both ordered the fish as our main course and we received a perfectly cooked piece of merluza that had been prepared on the wood-burning grill. We had homemade ice cream for dessert and, of course, we had coffee to finish our meal.
Yesterday featured a visit to the Central market to restock the refrigerator. We bought ham, turkey, cheeses, eggs, fruit and vegetables and we filled the rolling cart to overflowing. I had not been to the market for a while and, as always, it was nice to chat briefly with Cristina and Amparo. Once we had put everything away, we headed out to El Cuento for lunch. Susan started with a green apple salad while I opted for a burrito de ternera. Both were quite good. My main course was an arroz meloso de mariscos and Susan had a dish comprised of eggplant, fresh pear and cheese that was then oven baked. Our dessert was fresh watermelon.
We spent the rest of our day at home. I wanted to finish the 900-page book that I was reading and when I turned in at midnight I had achieved my goal. The book is called Las Doce Llaves and it is an adventure mystery that is set here in Valencia. It deals with the search for the twelve keys that locked the twelve gates to the city when Valencia was a walled city. The twelve keys when assembled would unlock one of the greatest treasures known to mankind. The book takes the reader to some of the most historic places in the city and imparts snippets of history along with the adventure. The book has a little bit of everything – adventure, mystery, romance, murder – and, while not great literature, is a most enjoyable read.