Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Exploring Sevilla

Posted by Maggie

We arrived in Madrid this morning (though what they claimed was 7 a.m. felt like midnight to us) after a long journey. We had several hours to wait in the Madrid airport before we could get our flight to Sevilla, and we spent most of those hours trying to stay awake. Finally on the airplane, we were able to relax and sleep until our arrival in Sevilla. Our bags arrived as well, we were lucky to get a friendly, courteous and careful taxi driver, and we liked our hotel the minute we got here.

After a little time to recuperate from the trip, we headed out for a short walk to see what was nearby. Our purpose here is to see if Sevilla would be a good option for a painting day trip for next year's Spain workshop, and we have a specific list of destinations to check out tomorrow and the next day. But, in an effort to stay awake until evening local time, we walked for a while this afternoon.

We are staying near the river Guadalquivr, and walked along it and across an interesting bridge. The architecture was interesting as well, even though we did not get nearly as far as the Catedral, the Alcázar or any of the more dramatic and distinctive structures we will explore tomorrow and the next day. Bill commented on the frequent use of gold and yellow trim on the white buildings, different than in the Genal Valley where the roofs of the white buildings are almost always red. Like some of the other cities we visit during our workshop day trips, there is a definite Moorish influence in the architecture. 

I wasn't expecting palm trees here. Our workshop location is in the village of Júzcar, Málaga Province, in the mountains. So I hadn't really thought about the fact that Sevilla is a lower altitude and farther south, and thus a bit warmer year round. The palms are wonderful, though, and so are the abundant flowers. I found a number of places along the river where I could be happy painting.

Facilities are important when you're picking plein air painting locations for a group of people. There has to be room to set up easels out of the way of traffic and pedestrians. It's nice if there is shade. And of course, we always try to find places to paint with nearby bathrooms. The people in Spain are remarkably accommodating in that regard—any restaurant or bar will let you use the "servicios" without question, although they are always happier if you buy a bottle of water or a snack.

After a couple of hours of walking, along with a stop for ice cream to rest and to cool off, we headed back to our hotel to rest. It's a bit too soon to decide if this beautiful walkway along the river will be a possibility for next year's painting workshop in Spain, though we might try it out ourselves if we have time. There was certainly no shortage of subjects in today's exploration—but we're off to explore further tomorrow, and who knows what other, even more wonderful things we might find!

No comments:

Post a Comment