Noche Buena (Christmas Eve)

San Geraldo couldn’t stand to be out-done [by me] in the kitchen (see previous post), so he made a tremendous effort with his Christmas goodies. I do have to give him credit.

In addition to the best brownies I’ve ever had (every time he makes them), San Geraldo also baked his shortbread lemon-raspberry bars.

I’d ask him to marry me if we weren’t already married.

We brought the treats to Tynan and Elena’s on Christmas Eve. Other than those two “postres,” it was a traditional Spanish Christmas dinner, and incredible. Elena knows how to host a feast and make it look casual and easy. And her sister Isabel makes the best croquettes (croquetas) I have ever tasted.

SAN GERALDO IN THE KITCHEN… BUT NOT FOR DUDO
(NO MATTER WHAT DUDO THOUGHT).
ELENA & TYNAN’S CHRISTMAS EVE TABLE, FIRST COURSE.
SAN GERALDO’S CHRISTMAS EVE BROWNIES.
SAN GERALDO’S CHRISTMAS EVE
SHORTBREAD LEMON-RASPBERRY BARS.
CHRISTMAS MORNING: TRADITIONALLY ON EPIPHANY EVE (JANUARY 5),
SHOES ARE LEFT ON WINDOWSILLS, BALCONIES, OR UNDER THE TREE
TO BE FILLED WITH PRESENTS BY THE THREE KINGS.

The first Spanish Christmas song I learned our first year in Spain (click here for a visit to our first Christmas in Sevilla, 2011). There are many different versions, but I love the lyrics of this one… (translation at bottom).

Karma, It’ll Bite You In The Ass

So, I was sitting on the toilet Friday morning. Yes, that really is how this story begins.

So, I was sitting on the toilet and Dudo decided, as always, it was a perfect opportunity for us to spend some time together. First, he forcefully pushed the door open with his front paws. He checked to make sure I wasn’t getting into the shower and then ran for a toy. (The usual routine.)

I threw the toy. He fetched it. I threw it again. He fetched it again. The third time, he returned with a long knotted-up string. We had a tug-of-war. I threw it. He fetched it. He tired of that and then raised up on his hind legs to head-butt my thigh. I took the hint and stroked and petted him. He clearly wanted to hop up on my lap. That was not about to happen.

I stopped responding to his head butts, assuming he’d leave me in peace.

Then I yelped.

DUDO, OUR LITTLE ANGEL.
(CLICK FOR THE BIGGER PICTURE.)

Annoyed by my lack of attention, Dudo bit me on the ass! Well, more precisely, he gave me a love bite (with his sharp little teeth) on the upper thigh.

The message: “Don’t ignore me, goddammit!”

I of course gave him a stern lecture. He apologised.

Show me your teeth…

Plugged In

San Geraldo and I went to Feria Sunday night. Last year, we noticed a gay pop-up bar, but we were so deafened by the noise by that time that we didn’t have it in us to stick around. As is the case in the USA, for some reason, the organisers and venders at these kinds of events choose to blast music from every venue at eardrum-exploding decibel levels.

Our reaction has nothing to do with us getting more crotchety as we get older (although in San Geraldo’s case, it’s a fact of life). I remember these same decibel levels from my time spent at discos and bars in the ’70s and ’80s, and long after —although no longer at discos.

When I saw Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band perform live in Brooklyn in the 1970s, the music was so loud that I had a ringing in my ears for a few days after.

Anyway, San Geraldo suggested we get ear plugs this year and then try and find that bar.

Behind the casetas (the small houses at the fairgrounds used for parties/food/music), is a strip of temporary bars hosted by different groups and organisations. That’s where we came upon that gay bar last year. So, last night, ear plugs in place, we headed down the lane. We never did find the gay bar this year, but I realised that we couldn’t have visited with anyone anyway. The ear plugs worked too well. (Click any image; it won’t get louder.)

A CASETA.
A QUIET AND LESS POPULAR CASETA.
A TYPICAL RACING COMPETITION ON THE MIDWAY.
INSTEAD OF HORSES, THIS ONE HAD CAMELS.
(WATCH THE FOLLOWING CLIP.)
WITH DIFFERENT MUSIC BOOMING FROM EVERY RIDE AND EVERY CASETA. 
LOOKING BACK AS WE MADE OUR ESCAPE.

We heard great singing, so stopped for some traditional Spanish music.
We didn’t stay long. Hi ho.

Horsefeathers

There’s so much to see at Fuengirola’s annual Feria (fair). To be clear, there’s more than one annual fair in Fuengirola. This week’s annual event is to honour the Virgin of the Rosary. She was processed (that’s pro-CEST as opposed to PRAH-cest) from the church this week. I’ve seen her before and wanted instead to see the horses and costumes as they arrived at the fairgrounds. Here, today, are the horses (mostly).

(Click any image to equestriansize.)

A HORSE BITES OFF A WOMAN’S HEAD AS HER FRIEND LOOKS ON.
HORSEFEATHERS*!
(*POLITE AMERICAN SLANG FOR HORSESHIT OR BULLSHIT.)
THE FIRST ARRIVALS. THE ADULTS WENT FOR A BEER AND
ARGUED A BIT BEFORE ENTERING THE FAIRGROUNDS.
PURE CLASS OUTSIDE ON THE NEARBY PLAZA.
STOPPING FOR A SARSAPARILLA AT A LOCAL SALOON.
(ACTUALLY, STOPPING FOR A FANTA ORANGE.)
SPANISH MAN SMOKING CUBAN CIGAR ON ARABIAN HORSE?*
*(REALLY, ANDALUSIAN — ALSO PURE SPANISH — HORSES, NOT ARABIAN.)
THE FAIRGROUNDS’ STREETS WERE STILL FAIRLY EMPTY,
BUT PEOPLE KEPT WALKING IN FRONT OF MY SHOTS.
APPLYING LIPSTICK AS SHE RIDES.
A TASTE OF TOMORROW:
THE TRADITIONAL COSTUMES.