Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Wining across Galicia

Long time no entries, sorry for that. However, I do have two great excuses. 

First good excuse. Erin came to visit for a week in July, a week that just seemed too short. It was so great seeing her after almost three months that while waiting for her at the airport I was so excited and happy, nerves in my belly, that I just could not wait to see her and show her around.

For one week we did some site seeing and lots of wining and dining across the region. Our first stop was Tui on our way back from Porto and later a finger food diner on the hill top of Casal de Arman, with a lovely sight overlooking the Ribeiro vineyards in Ourense.

Dinner with a view in Casal de Arman

The following days were a continuous driving back and forth to some of the close attractions around Ourense. We visited  the 'Ribera Sacra' and took the catamaran along the Sil River while contemplating the terraced vineyards between steep rock walls and later getting lost while trying to find Santa Cristina monastery on our way back, a challenge we did not manage to meet, but at least we did make it to San Pedro de Rocas, an amazing monastery excavated in the granite rocks of the mountain, surrounded by chestnut tree forest and small running creeks.

Hahaha, the experience was not as pleasant when we decided to embark ourselves in the catamaran from Baiona and spend a day at the Cies Islands. Half way to the coast, the fog made its appearance  and stayed. For over five hours we were at the paradisiac island, covered with all the clothes we had and trying to stay warm. The stress and disappointment had its reward in the way of an amazing diner at El Candil, in Baiona. Bogavante rice and a bottle of Godello, were a nice consolation price. 

The night before departure we went to the Rosal wine fest, a very typical Galician way of celebrating their 'fiestas' with nice local products and the fantastic Rias Baixas wine from O Rosal subregion. The 'charanga' made its way and everyone, without exception, danced and sang to the music of the young musicians. It was a very folkloric moment to take as a souvenir. 

It just went so fast, that by the time we realised the seven days were gone and the drive back to Porto from Viana do Castelo, a bit tight. I did not succeed in my secret plan to miss the plane so that she had to stay for another week... 

Well my dear friend, you must come to visit again. Soon.

The days between Erin's departure and Peter's arrival went between finalising my kitchen (still ongoing), meeting friends and other domestic tasks. 

On Sunday the day started out grey and not that warm, threatening thunderstorms, nothing to do with the summer ideal. Peter arrived to Vigo on the late flight from Madrid, just in time to suffer a bit of turbulences but when the worst had past, and from Monday on... Sun, sun, sun!

With my house in better shape, we managed to eat breakfast everyday in the new balcony set and prepare coffee in the new kitchen. A ode to modernity! Small quotidian pleasures, nice to have back.

Tuesday 30 July: my grandmother's 90th birthday and time for a family celebration I could not ask my guest to endure, so while I sang along a million times happy birthday dear mother, grandmother, greatgrandmother... He had wonderful day at the beach in Cies.

Heading towards the Cies Islands from Baiona

Tapas dinner in Baiona and a three day stay at the beach, working (hard) on our suntan. I must say he managed to get one much better than mine... :(

Time flies when you are having fun, and after visiting Santiago de Compostela on Saturday, and a lazy Sunday in Ourense, it was time for him to go back and for me to prepare for my next visit. This time it is my turn to travel to Madrid on the weekend to celebrate a very dear friend's birthday.

Pedro en Santiago de Compostela

While I was writing this post, the carpenter finished with the last details of my kitchen and the painter will come this afternoon to do the last bit. Oh yeah!

Well my readers, thank you for your patience and hope to see you soon.

On the meantime, enjoy and have fun.


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