Without even trying last night, we found Nuestra Virgen del Pilar in all her splendor. We were walking to dinner at Catalina when we began to hear another very good marching band. We sped in the direction of the music (well, I sped with my camera; San Geraldo sauntered) and reached the Iglesia Santa Ángela de la Cruz (Church of Saint Angela of the Cross).
A beautiful paso was rounding the corner toward the open front doors of the church. It was different from other floats we’ve seen. The Virgin and Child were smaller and elevated on a column. Yes, I know it’s the Virgin of the Pillar and therefore they’re mounted on a pillar (not a column), but I didn’t catch on right away.
Click photo at left for a large (although not ideal) virgin vision.
We watched the float round the corner. There was a pause while the costaleros turned around beneath the paso. They then began to carefully take it in reverse (the float was in reverse, the costaleros were not) through the main doors of the church.
Mad Dogs and Englishman
We continued our walk to Catalina and had another perfect evening with a warm welcome, friendly and attentive service, and unbelievably good food. We began the evening sitting on the terrace (patio) near a couple with two dogs (they’re there often and the dogs have always been well-behaved). One of the dogs, Polo, had a high-pitched yap that for some reason this particular evening he was directing angrily at every passing stranger. It drove us a little crazy, so we moved to the other end of the patio and all was well.
On our way home a group of four guys in their 20s were loudly singing/slurring as they walked on the other side of the street slightly behind us. Although we see plenty of social drinking in Sevilla, it’s extremely rare for us to see a display of public intoxication. The four guys crossed to our side and we heard one solitary voice call out from about 15 feet away, “Hola!”
We turned, but he was having such a difficult time focusing we couldn’t tell if he was even looking in our direction. Everyone else on the street pointedly ignored these guys. He called out “Hola” two more times and we turned and waited. He approached us, although not very directly, and blurted, “Church?”
I said, “What church?” (We were standing right in front of the Church of Saint Angela of the Cross and had already passed one other on our brief walk.)
He tilted his head blankly in my general direction. “Church?” he repeated.
San Geraldo then asked, “Do you know the name of the church?”
He tilted his head in San Geraldo’s general direction.
I then asked, “What language do you speak? ¿Qué habla?
Another perplexed head tilt. One of his loud friends then reached us. In a very slurred English accent, he said, “Do you know where Hoe-stel Oh-A-sis is?”
San Geraldo asked, “Do you know the street it’s on?”
“No. But, it’s next to the church,” he announced proudly and then asked, “Where’s the church?”
There were churches visible in all directions, we pointed out. He smiled.
“You don’t know the name of the church or the street?” I asked.
“No,” he laughed, “I don’t know anything.” He smiled broadly, doffed an invisible hat, and staggered off to catch up with another friend careening down the street.