We have just returned from an afternoon in Niebla, a small town of about 4000 people and a fantastic medieval castle surrounded by a complete city wall. The town itself is quite average, yet the ´castillo´is still almost complete and we had a wonderful couple of hours wandering inside and reading about how they lived and , in the dungeons we were given explicit details ,pictures and REAL devices of torture. They certainly were very inventive when it came to weeding out spies, witches, non_ christians and criminals. The kids were grossed out and fascinated at the same time!
There was a bit of armour to try on and a shield and some spears as well that the kids all had a turn of wearing.
we had lunch along the banks of the Rio Tinto (Red River) which is a rusty colour all the time because of the minerals in the soil apparently. It was lined with gum trees and we almost could have been on the Murrumbidgee, except of course, for the huge old city walls rising above us!
Yesterday Claudia celebrated her birthday party. Her actual birthday is in late Nov, but she wanted to wait for Josie to come and she went to PRINCESSLANDIA for some girlie pampering with Jose and about 8 friends. They got manicures, pedicures, makeup, hairdos and choose a fairy dress and took a turn to parade on a catwalk!!!! Jose was a bit scared at first, but from all accounts she enjoyed herself.
Grame, Dan, the boys and I went to a little town called Santa Olella which had an 11th century castle on a hill and we went for an 11km walk through the surrounding countryside. we were surrounded by olive groves (they are everywhere) and trees just turning yellow (Graeme said many trees dont lose their leaves until Jan/Feb because weather never that cold). Many mediterranean Acorn trees which big black iberian pigs loved to graze under and there were lots of pigs. Apparently the jamon (ham) from such pigs is prized and very expensive.beautifully green groves of trees and shady walkways were common as we followed an old railway line. we ate lunch at an old deserted farmhouse and hoped we were taking the right path home!
We stopped at the local bar and sat in the ´sol´and had a glass of beer, or coke or cafe latte. a tíring but great day.
The weather is holding out so we are enjoying being outside as much as we can.