Friday, October 19, 2012
The threat of rain for the weekend has entered the forecast. We are having dinner tonight with Jaime Gómez, a Professor of Mathematics at the Universidad Politécnica de Valencia and fellow magician, his wife, a visiting professor from Kansas, his wife and the two of us. We will be dining at Carosel so that we can try out Jordi’s new menu items, all done over a wood-burning grill. We shall see if we end up dining indoors. This will be one of three consecutive dining experiences. Saturday Pepe has invited us for a very special paella and on Sundaywe will visit with Nacho who will show Susan how to make an arroz al horno and then we will return home for after-dinner drinks and an opportunity to show Nacho our new digs.
Yesterday we had lunch at A Nou and, as always, it was a very pleasant meal. The three appetizers yesterday were a coca filled with tomatoes and goat cheese, a cream of tomato and carrot soup and a delightful combination of spinach, shrimp and egg that had been prepared in the oven. We chose an arroz meloso de langostinos y setas as our main dish. Susan had chunks of baked apple topped with a scoop of chocolate ice cream for dessert and I had some fresh pineapple topped with a small scoop of lemon sorbet and a small scoop of mojito sorbet. Very refreshing!
We had no problem navigating our way to A Nou because we were walking. Traffic however was backed up to forever because of a demonstration by both students and parents protesting the heavy cuts made to education. As a sign of protest parents had held their children out of school. In addition to protesting the cuts, they were also calling for the dismissal of the Minister of Education who has overseen the cuts, made changes in the curriculum, expanded class sizes and floated the idea of charging one or two Euros to students who bring their lunch to school because they cannot afford to buy it. His latest gaff was to state that, with respect to Catalonia, one of the goals of education was to make Catalonian students more Spanish. The verb españolizar is a hot button term because it brings up memories of Franco’s attempts to outlaw all languages except Spanish and to penalize, fine and/or imprison those who used the other languages of Spain.
There was another protest in the evening and that made it difficult to get to the meeting of the veteranos, but the good news is that I was able to make it. It was our first meeting of the year and it was nice to see Jerito again. All the usual suspects were at the meeting – Pepe, Paquito, Juan Luis, Gurrea and Gioco. Gurrea showed us a version of Out of This Worldthat was very impressive and Gioco followed that with a powerful trick from the creative mind of Dani DaOrtiz.
At 9:30 we headed out in search of a bite to eat and we chose the path of least resistance settling in at the café on the corner where we usually end up ordering sandwiches and a beer. To prove that we were well indoctrinated we ended up ordering sandwiches and a beer. Gurrea drove me home and it was a little after 11:30 when I walked through the door. Susan was still up watching TV. We turned off the lights at midnight.