Some news from Spain LXXI

And why not some latest news from my beloved Spain. On another cloudy cool day at 12C in my Breton woods and colder in Madrid at 8C this morning but sunny. Let’s get into the Spanish mood!

We talk about old in some countries, well Spain has some very old buildings and some very famous. Let me give the oldest from youngest to oldest below

The Alhambra of Granada (year 1238): Let’s start with the Alhambra, the military fortress built in Granada since the year 889, although until 1238 would not be remodeled to fix the royal residence. After the reconquest, the Catholic monarchs demolished part of the building to establish the palace of Charles V and the beauty salon of the Queen.

University of Salamanca (year 1218): Let us go to the University of Salamanca, inaugurated in 1218, becoming the oldest university in Spain and one of the longest-lived in Europe. During the Spanish Golden Age it became a national benchmark, being the most prestigious and famous in the country.

Cathedral of Leon (year 1205): The Cathedral of León is one of the great Gothic-style works of our country. The one we know today is raised on a primitive that was built on Roman baths.

Giralda of Sevilla (year 1195):  With 823 years, the Giralda in Seville has become one of the oldest buildings in Spain and for several years was one of the highest in Europe with its 95 meters high. The tower was built by the Muslims during their stay in the city and later, after the conquest of Seville, the highest part of the belfry was modeled making it grow more than 10 meters.

Alcazar de Segovia (year 1155): In 1155, the Alcazar of Segovia is the first time that it appears quoted with the denomination of Alcazar. Its functions were first fortress, then Royal State prison and later College of Artillery and historical military archives. As a curiosity, Walt Disney was inspired by this Alcazar to create the famous Snow White Castle.

Mosque of Cordoba (year 987): And you come to the mosque of Cordoba. Built in the year 987 and with 23,400 square meters inside, it was the second largest mosque in the world after Mecca, only being reached later by the Blue Mosque, in Istanbul. After the Christian reconquest of the city of Córdoba, it was consecrated as a Cathedral.

Santa Maria del Naranco, Asturias (year 848): Now we arrived at Santa María del Naranco, an old palace located four km from Oviedo, on Mount Naranco. It was not originally projected as a church, but was the Royal classroom of King Ramiro I. The building is divided into two floors and completely vaulted, being one of the most significant Romanesque constructions in Europe.

Tower of Hercules, Galicia (1C AD): The Tower of Hercules has become a symbol of La Coruña since its construction in the 1C. The tower has the privilege of being the only Roman lighthouse and the oldest in operation in the world. With 36 meters initially and with 57 today, it is one of the highest lighthouses in Spain.

Castro de Santa Tecla, Galicia (1C BC):  This village, located at 341 meters high in the vicinity of the Galician municipality of a Guarda, came to accomodate some 5,000 people during its epoch of greater splendor, back in the 1C AD year of which one of the Castros remains. In several of the stones of the mountain there are petroglyphs elaborated 2,000 years before the settlement was created.

Naveta des Tudons, Menorca (year 1000 BC): The Naveta des Tudons, located on the island of Menorca, is considered one of the oldest buildings in the world. Erected over the year 1000 BC and belonging to the talayotic culture, it was built as a funerary monument. In its construction no cement was used, only stones fitted together.

Let me tell you some delicious spots to eat rice in many forms in my beloved Spain. This is mine and/or my Spanish family’s favorites there

La Arrocieria de Picon ,Calle Las Sernas, 2. Picón, Ciudad Real. Castilla-La Mancha.  Opened at 2009 and the successor of the Picon Grill , the specialty of its dining rooms-250 squares-is the special mixed paella (17.80 euros), with chicken, prawn, Norway lobster, prawn, cuttlefish, squid, mussels, green bean, pepper and Garrofón More complete than the conventional mixed (14.80 euros). But there are more options, some interesting, like rice with black pudding from Burgos, apple and prawns. In addition, paella of the Labrador or cuttlefish, artichokes and garlic; Black Rice; Of the master with lobster or boletus, prawns and rib. Its menus (20 and 27 euros) incorporate a rice to choose from. When making the reservation, it is necessary to indicate which one will be taken..

El Arrosar Calle Salvador Cuyas, 10. Las Palmas, Gran Canarias. The menu of this Arrocería and seafood restaurant, opened in 1990, includes almost a score of options for all tastes (10 and 16 euros). It is noteworthy the rice of pork and vegetables lean and garlic tender and Choco. In addition, it dispatches several versions of paella (with combinations of rabbit, shellfish and vegetables), sweet rice (poultry and vegetables), broth (clams, prawns and fish of the day; also with lobster, Carabineros or cockle) and to carry although it is necessary to book with a couple of hours in advance.

Las Bairetas Prolongación calle Ramón y Cajar, s/n. Chiva, Valencia.  Owned by the Margós family , their rices are cooked in pine wood in a wide stay full of paella that the client can visit. Its menu adds a score of options (from 12.50 to 17.60 euros), with the Valencian paella as the star. But it is not the only one, also highlights the rice of duck and mushrooms; that of sausages and tender garlic; Boneless rabbit and mushrooms; that of Pollo Campero and red prawn; Crayfish, soft garlic and cuttlefish or cauliflower and dried cod. Another detail: The diner can choose any of the rices in a syrupy, broth or dry version.

La Bomba Bistrot Calle Pedro Muguruza, 5. Madrid.  Christophe Pais, gourmet of French origin who premiered as an innkeeper with the Bomba Rice Bar , plasma his good hand with rice in a section of the menu of his restaurant. They are made with the raw materials supplied by suppliers who select the country itself. Its menu usually contains four recipes (from 23 to 26 euros) and the most successful is the duck rice with leek and artichoke (in season, is added Níscalo). However, you should not forget curiosities like that to prepare the fumet of your vegetable rice are used 36 ingredients or that your rice of Carabineros is based on a recipe validated by the CIAL (Institute of Research in Food sciences, dependent on CSIC).

Paella by Rodrigo de la Calle Plaza de San Miguel, s/n. Mercado de San Miguel, Madrid.  The Arrocería of the chef of the  Greenhouse, open in summer, is a place of the renovated gastronomic market of San Miguel. Under non-stop schedule, a team of three or four people prepares live rice dishes in three fires made by Valencian artisans, as well as paellas. It uses rice Bombita by Torca, which they receive-freshly peeled-weekly: It is a small pump, able to absorb the broth of five times its weight. Its other secrets are a background made with kombu and chickpeas and Salmorreta (ñora with garlic and tomato), according to a recipe of its own. It usually has four dishes: Valencian paella; vegetables; Black rice (ration, 16 euros; tapas, 8 euros and tapas power, 15 euros) and the paella homage to Joël Robuchon, his best seller (ration, 20 euros; tapa, 10 euros and tapa power, 15 euros), which is almost an antichrist, as it adds chorizo!, following the elaboration of the French chef  died in August and worked with the Spaniard.

Samm , Calle Carlos Caamaño, 3. Madrid.  This family business specializes in cooking Levantina-which, in 1973, founded Vicente Asunción and María del Carmen (originally from Manises)-represents one of the great rice destinations of the capital. All are cooked prior to ordering, except the Senyoret, which is always available in this restaurant in the Madrid district of Chamartín and is made according to the recipe Alicante, with chunks of fish, cuttlefish and squid. It is served in a thin layer, in a paella with socarrat. Other rice dishes of the menu (from 22 to 25 euros per person) are black, with the same ingredients as that of the master but with fresh ink from the incorporated cuttlefish; Valencian Paella; vegetables; Baked rice in a clay casserole (only prepared for a minimum of four people) and meat and vegetable or fish broths.

Ventorrillo Murciano Calle de Tres Peces, 20. Madrid.  The Murcian Jose Maria Muñoz and the Cuban Ivette Martínez run this house in a small restaurant in the district of Lavapies (on whose facade, it looks like main name three fishes or tres peces ) ,where they dispatch Murcian cuisine with rice as protagonists of a not very extensive menu. Of course, despite the origin of its owner, the establishment does not serve rice in cauldron. Instead, you opt for the dry ones with good point (17.90 euros per person). Prepared and served in paella, their rices of vegetables are famous-with a choice of one hundred per cent vegetable (the Huertano), with rabbit, with ribs or with cod crumbs (the latter, known as widowed rice, its great specialty)-, apart from its combination of Carabineros with clams or prawns. Other dishes of his menu are the black rice, of Murcian sausage or Abanda.

A bit on the Arts:

It is said that Jaume Sabartés (Barcelona, 1881-Paris, 1968), poet and journalist, was someone submitted by Pablo Picasso, a kind of slave of the artist who assumed the role of Representative from 1935. Now, on the other hand, relationship that flourished among them is recognized as a history “of friendship and work”, embodied in the 700 letters that the painter sent to Sabartés between 1927 and 1967. Sabartés kept in his home a box containing the nearly 700 letters he had received from Picasso’s fist and handwriting. It was found after his death, in February 1968, with explicit instructions: the letters could not transcend until fifty years later. This year the anniversary is fulfilled and finally, Its legacy awakens to  the world. The exhibition ‘ Sabartés per Picasso per Sabartés ‘ sheds light on these unpublished jewels at the Museu Picasso in Barcelona.

Ok not really on Spain , but saw the article in El Mundo newspaper and is one of the great ones of cinema in my opinion; with one movie that stands out for me. RIP

Bernardo Bertolucci (Parma 1941-Rome 2018) marked a time when he knew how to build himself as one of the great spokesmen of a generation destined to change the world until it was trick, without hope. His life had marked direction,and he met Pier Paolo the end of the 1950’s, the poet of the ashes of Gramsci decided to go to the search for another language, passing to the film direction. As Accatone’s assistant, his first adventure behind the scenes, he chose the young Bernardo, who later stated that he felt during those months at the exact point of the refoundation of the seventh art.

He made his debut in 1962 with the Commare Secca , and later  Before the Revolution  (1964), where with the title summarizes its essence through the mythical phrase of Talleyrand “who has not lived the years before the revolution cannot comprehend the sweetness of living “.  He went on to of Sonadores or Dreamers ‘s (2003), minor film that would synthesize his last stage from ‘ Little Buddha ‘ (1993), when the ideas of his films showed a kind of nostalgia for an unrecoverable youth.  The Conformist  (1970). It has been two years of passing the French May68 and Bertolucci dares to narrate, from the sensational novel by Alberto Moravia, the existence of a normal man who wants to be confused between the mass, accept the precepts of society and renounce his individual freedom with such achievement. The Last Tango in Paris (1972) is now a bomb within another bomb with more lethal mechanisms than the crusher of Banksy. This happens because of polemics about butters, consents and answers of Trivial Pursuit that do not lead to generate any kind of consensus between fake news and sporadic ranting about. The truth is that The Last Tango in Paris, always with the last bull, gathers all the ingredients to be immortal from reason other than their intentions. On the other hand, if one observes its development, it is easy to define a masterpiece, and the ego of Bertolucci intended it. The scenario of the facts, the Bridge of Bir Hakeim, that iron bridge towards the orange portal of Jules Verne, passes from being a corner to be of all because the fiction has surpassed the reality, giving new meanings to it. And the reason took me to Paris back then for the first time in 1972! And part of the name of my blog!!!

Bertolucci made  Novecento (1976). Your six hours of footage are in another category. The beginning of that barbarism dazzles and narrows. The Last Emperor (1987) received many statuettes, but he has some of the genius that lowers his standards to fit the majority taste. Sick and in a wheelchair he still had stamina to give in 2012 You and I, adaptation of a novel by Niccolò Ammaniti. The cinema, and more in this drunken speed, is of the arts that can age worse. It will remain to have its ability to thread a recognizable seal by knowing how to pool the knowledge of its environment, to surpass it and to raise immortal subjects, valid then and now, from a background of humanism. While he was faithful to himself the epic was never on the heights.He will be remembered. RIP or QDEP.

And one more very important information. Madrid is going London, congestion fees or heavy fines a la Milan. Be aware of new automobile constraints entering Madrid starting from this Friday November 30th 2018. More info from my translation of El Confidencial newspaper.

The Madrid Central (centro=center) perimeter will group the four current residential priority areas (APR): Letras, Cortéss,Embajadores and Opera, and will add other areas of the center later on. There will be no streets of free movement and the perimeter is determined by the rounds and boulevards: The streets Alberto Aguilera, Glorieta de Bilbao, Plaza de Alonso Martínez, Plaza de Colón, Paseo de Recoletos, Paseo del Prado, ronda de Atocha, Ronda de Toledo, Ronda de Segovia, Calle Bailen , Plaza de España and Calle Princesa.  Access and free movement are restricted throughout the perimeter of Madrid Central with the exception of the following streets: Calle Santa Cruz de Mercenado (from Calle Serrano Jover to Calle Martires de Alcalá), Calle Martires de Alcalá (from Calle Santa Cruz de Marcenado to Calle Alberto Aguilera), Avenida Gran Vía de San Francisco, Bailen, Calle Algeciras, Cuesta Ramón, Calle Ventura Rodríguez (from Calle Princesa to Calle Duque de Liria), Calle Duque de Liria (from Calle Ventura Rodríguez  to Calle Princesa).  During the months of November and December an informative campaign is being developed. From January 2019 there will be  notices send to vehicles that are doing badly and from March 2019 will arrive the fines.

I have guests at home. Can you access and park? Right. Each registered  adult  of 16 years old will have 20 invitations of one day of duration per month to give access to vehicles of guests. The invitation given by the people registered is to reach Madrid Central, without limit of duration of the stay. Once they have access, for which they have permission, they will be able to park where they deem opportune. Any owner of a particular garage located in the area of Madrid Central will have permission to access a vehicle for parking in the same, regardless of the environmental label. The landlord owner of the garage must notify the City Council of the car registration plaque/number that makes use of that space.

Is it obligatory to carry the environmental label?  In fact, it will be obligatory to wear it at the end of April  24th, 2019 because the city Council gives a margin of six months for all cars to catch up. The important thing now will be the label that corresponds to your car. There are four types: B, C, ECO (hybrid) and zero (electrical). The B and C can access  Madrid Central without being registered if they leave their car in a parking garage/ lot. What you cannot do under any circumstances is to cross the perimeter of Madrid Central without entering a  parking garage/lot  nor can you park in the area being (blue or green).

Hotel users/guests, regardless of whether they are registered or not, can travel through Madrid Central and leave the car in the parking of the hotel. Foreign-registered vehicles , as they are not environmentally classified, must certify the potential contaminants of the vehicle. Depending on the category with which these vehicles are equal in Madrid, the corresponding access rules will be applied. If you already have an environmental label from another country, (yes I do for Paris lol!) you should ask the city council or the DGT (general directory of transports) which Spanish label your vehicle is equivalent to and you can know how you can move through the Madrid Central perimeter.

All (resident invitations, registration changes…) must be made via telematics in the profile of the user of Madrid Central that will be enabled in (city/town hall of Madrid). In the coming weeks, it is foreseeable that the consistory will provide more details and there could be some phone and some other way of communication. For the moment, it is best to stay with the  online way  that will be enabled on the Web. More here in Spanish: City of Madrid enviromental labels

There you go another bit of news from my Spain, everything under the Sun. Enjoy it

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!




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2 Comments to “Some news from Spain LXXI”

  1. So many beautiful places to visit in Spain! It would take all day to list them all.
    SantaTecla has a special significance in my family as my mother used to spend her holidays there when she was young and it was one of her favourite places and when she died, we scattered her ashes into the sea from the clifftop.

    Liked by 1 person

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