Castillo San Marcos

Castillo San Marcos
13th-century castle, El Puerto de Santa Maria. That WAS our house to the left and behind the tree!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Gearing Up for the Home Stretch

Daffodils in Wales

As though I didn’t have enough fun things to do here in Spain, I had to make myself a sevillanas teacher.  I’ve been away from teaching for nearly 5 years now, except for my weekly English Conversation class, which is now in its third year and going strong.  But I saw a lot of Americans sidelined on the feria dance floor, and I figured that I could get them out there to enjoy the feria in a whole new way.

Dancing with a bunch of my students at the Rota feria

Teaching has always been enjoyable for me, and having enthusiastic, excited, and slightly nervous students was a real bonus.  I rolled back the rug, moved the furniture to the side, and held class every Tuesday for the two months preceding the start of feria season.  We ended with a great lunch and dancing at the Rota feria.  What great students!

Sevillanas students mixed in with our OCSC club folks--salud!

Click here to see a couple of my students tearing up the dance floor

Tia turns 14 at home in Spain, too.
We also took the time to head over to London to strong-arm my friend Janice into visiting us before we leave Spain.  (Success-she’ll be here in July.)  We hung out with her and celebrated a memorable 14th birthday for Tia in her kitchen, singing 80s hits and tossing confetti.

Fancy British Sweet
Where's Harry Potter?

There goes Big Ben...again...

Once on the Britannic island, we drove out to the West coast to see my cousins Toeja and Wyck, from the Dutch side of the family who have lived in Wales for the past 20 years.  Their new house was lovely even in the midst of being remodeled, and it was a treat to catch up with them.  I’ve loved them ever since visiting them in Balkbrug, Holland, when I was 16.  The connection is just THERE!

Lovely Welsh house (I even have some Welsh ancestors!)

Wyck and I inside their new house

Toeja and Puss-Puss (Tia and Sasha fell in love with all of them, cat included!)

We wandered the coastline and marveled at the good luck we were having with the weather.  Daffodils were out in abundance, and Spring was just springing.

Petting the wild horses that roam the coast

Scenic beauty

Hidden coves

Impressive rock formations

We came back to Semana Santa in El Puerto.  We meant to go up to Sevilla, or over to Jerez, but the hometown processions and ease of running down the street to see the next holy statue parade past was just too tempting.   I love Puerto.

Early-morning procession, 5 am

Parading through the streets

Easter was a blur, literally—we participated in the annual Color Run up at the base, where you try your best to avoid a burst of radioactive chalk as you chug past each color station.  I was (again) unsuccessful in my dodges, and got an eyeful of green powder. Lucky I had on sunglasses.  Tia and Sasha had no misgivings, and dumped cupfuls of the stuff on their heads to emphasize the “color” part.

Colorful kids

The adults weren't any more restrained than the kids

Happy Easter!

Finally, we ended up the month with the newly reconstituted Vale That Band.  Mike Carsley, former Navy pilot and good friend, stepped in for our dentist buddy Matt Gramkee, who had to take a lucrative job back in Maryland.  We practiced and played to a packed house, Mike’s voice a perfectly-pitched welcome addition to the solid drums provided by Pedro, my simple bass runs, and Todd’s fast guitar leads. 

Rocking Planeta 80

Our life here in Spain grows short, and so our schedule is even more full as we pack in all we can before heading home at the end of the summer. 

Check:  Singing flamenco AND rock-n-roll at Planeta 80 the following weekend!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to add your comments here!