Wednesday, August 31, 2011

La Tomatina

Every year on the last Wednesday in August Buñol hosts the now-famous Tamatina festival. The village is filled with ripe tomatoes and participants pelt one another sensless with them. Sound like your idea of fun?

Buñol can be reached easily from either Madrid or Valencia (Valencia is only 35km away). You can take the C3 line train from either Madrid or Valencia, or you can travel via bus, or drive along the A3 motorway. 

Monday, August 29, 2011

FC Barcelona vs Villareal CF

Barça begins the season with a home opener against Villarreal at 21:00 tonight. Villarreal recently qualified for the Champions League and is grouped with Bayern Munich, Manchester City, and Naples. Their schedule for the group play is as follows:

Villarreal-Bayern de Múnich (miércoles 14 de septiembre, 20.45 horas)
Nápoles-Villarreal (martes 27 de septiembre, 20.45 horas)
Manchester City-Villarreal (martes 18 de octubre, 20.45 horas)
Villarreal-Manchester City (miércoles 2 de noviembre, 20.45 horas)
Bayern de Múnich-Villarreal (martes 22 de noviembre, 20.45 horas)
Villarreal-Nápoles (miércoles 7 de diciembre, 20.45 horas)

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Getafe CF vs Levante UD

Today at 18:00 in Coliseum Alfonso Pérez Levante play the number 19 team from last season.

Valencia CF vs Racing

Valencia's home opener at Mestalla is tonight. Make that last night as the game was moved because of the strike. The good news is that Valencia won their season and home opener with a spectacular 4-3 win over Racing after trailing 1-3 in the second half. A hat trick by Soldado and Rami, in his league debut, scored a brilliant header from a corner kick by Pablo. Valencia CF is off to a great start!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Pulp Fiction at Filmoteca

Tonight at 22:30 in the Turia River Park in front of the Palau de Música you can see Quentin Tarentino's noir classic, Pulp Fiction. These original version movies are shown at a lovely outdoor venue right next to the fountain in front of the music hall.

Jules Winnfield and Vincent Vega are two hitmen who are out to retrieve a suitcase stolen from their employer, mob boss Marsellus Wallace. Wallace has also asked Vincent to take his wife Mia out a few days later when Wallace himself will be out of town. Butch Coolidge is an aging boxer who is paid by Wallace to lose his next fight. The lives of these seemingly unrelated people are woven together comprising of a series of funny, bizarre and uncalled-for incidents.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tablao Flamenco La Bulería

Calle Obispo Jaime Pérez 24
Valencia 46004
963 153 058

National recognized Flamenco artist Daniel Navarro Muñoz will be giving his final performances in Valencia this weekend at Tablao Flamenco La Bulería.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Summer Food From Greece

I lived in Greece for three years and learned quite a lot about Greek cuisine. The first rule is that a Greek salad doesn't have lettuce! I hate lettuce and nutritionally speaking it's pretty worthless. In my three years in that country I never had a Greek salad with lettuce. Never,ever! Tzatziki, a Greek salad, some good bread, and a glass of cold white wine make for a perfect lunch in August in the Mediterranean basin.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Few Notes on Summer in Valencia

You can tell that it is summer by the faint amount of laundry that cycles through my washing machine. I think that I may have done one load in the last three weeks or so. The summer dress code in Valencia—at least for me—is decidedly casual: flip-flops, surf trunks, and soccer jerseys which usually follow me into a cold shower when I get back from a bike ride to the beach. There’s a bit of a water shortage so I’m just doing my part by killing two birds with one stone.

The few neighborhood cafes that have remained open in August get pretty full in the evenings as not everyone has left town. It seems that everyone that has stayed now has more idle time than usual so café card games flourish, dominoes take on an added seriousness, and the extras chairs that are usually stacked against the wall are all in use.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Gulliver Park

A little Lilliput in Valencia's Turia Park. Open every day from 10:00 to 20:00.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Designer Clothes at Bargain Prices

Spain hasn't fully caught on to the phenomena of used clothing. Most people here just throw out their old stuff. Spain doesn't have the culture of people buying used clothing items . This is all changing with the new website:

(Make Space in Your closet)

It's far from a good old American thrift store of Salvation Army because what they sell is expensive designer clothes. As their name says, "We sell what you no longer want." Let's see if this idea catches on here.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Osasuna vs Valencia CF

Valencia travels to Pamplona for the season opener against Osasuna.

Levante Unión Deportiva vs. Real Zaragoza

Levante Unión Deportiva kicks off the season with a home opener against Real Zaragoza. This begins Levante's second season back up in La Primera. New coach Juan Ignacio Martínez Jiménez will be taking over for Luis García who defected to Getafe CF.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Typically Spanish!

La Vuelta a España 2011

Running from Saturday August 20th to Sunday September 11th 2011, the 66th Vuelta a España will be made up of 21 stages and will cover a total distance of 3,300 kilometres. These stages have the following profiles:

  • 9 flat stages
  • 10 mountain stages
  • 1 team time-trial stage
  • 1 individual time-trial stage

Distinctive aspects of the race

  • 6 summit finishes
  • 2 rest days
  • 14 km. team time-trial
  • 40 km. individual time-trial stage

New stage towns

La Nucía, Petrer, Sierra Nevada, Úbeda, Almadén, Villacastín, Sarria, Villa Romana La Olmeda (Palencia), Faustino V and Noja

New finishes

Totana, San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Estación de Montaña Manzaneda, La Farrapona-Lagos de Somiedo and Noja

Today's stage begins in Benidorm.

Friday, August 19, 2011

BiciViernes - Bike Fridays

If you are thinking of leaving the car in the garage and taking your bike to work, today and every Friday are good days to do it.

The objectives of BiciViernes:

  • Encourage people to ride their bikes to work.
  • Help new cyclists to feel more comfortable riding in traffic.
  • Make bikes more visible in the urban landscape.
  • Teach car drivers to respect cyclists.
  • Show people that it is possible to ride a bike to work.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

L'Altra Ma

Ned Flanders would feel right at home at the L'Altra Ma (the other hand), a shop that specializes in products for left-handed people. After centuries of persecution, lefties now have a store of their very own in Valencia. Lord love a lefty!
Calle Guillem de Sorolla 1
963 919 897

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cine Babel: Original Version Movies in Valencia

Calle Vicente Sancho Tello 10

One of the few places in Valencia where you can see movies in their original language subtitled in in Spanish. Most of the films they show here3 are in English and most of them seem to be Woody Allen movies. If you go by there and the don't have a Woody Allen movie playing I would be surprised. See seven movies here and the eighth movie is free!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Life of Fish

Tonight at 22:30 in Turia Park next to the Palau de la Música the Filmoteca d'Estiu presents this French and Chilean production. 


At a house party, a handsome man wanders around catching up with friends he has not seen for some years. A travel writer now based in Berlin, Andre appears to be living an exciting international life, and yet... something has drawn him back home to Santiago. As the night goes on, we realize that a tragedy binds this group - an event that was also the impetus for Andre's departure from Chile years ago. Moreover, there is someone at the party he goes to great lengths to avoid. But she is the very person he most needs to see.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Puente de la Exposición

The Exposition Bridge was designed by local boy Santiago Calatrava. It spans over Turia Gardens and the metro station of Alameda.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Secure Bicycle Parking

Bicibox is an experimental system of secure bike parking which seems perfect for many city dwellers who don't have a place indoors to store their bicycles. You can only store your bike for a maximum of 12 hours a day so the idea is for people who ride their bike daily. I think that they have the idea wrong. Bike parking on a short term isn't really a problem. Simply locking your bike works adequately, at least during the daytime. It's at night that you have the most to worry about as far as theft is concerned. Using these shelters for short-term daytime parking hardly seems worth the effort. What is needed is some sort of bike parking with VERY secure locks so that people can leave their bikes on the street at night without worrying. Or perhaps the police could go out and arrest people for stealing bikes? I wonder if they have ever tried that?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Another Day, Another Cool Bodega

Just in case I start to forget what I love about living in Valencia I happened upon this little bodega in Cabanyal (Cabañal in Spanish), the old fishing port of the city. I didn’t go inside because for me 1 pm is a little early for a glass of wine—I guess I’m not very Spanish after all.  I was also on a Valenbisi bike with the clock ticking. This is on my way to my French class and is about 20 minutes via a sweaty bike ride.  I’ll have to make time to stop in sometime soon as it looked as charming on the inside as it does outside.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I Happened to Look Up

I was walking home one evening last week and I happened to look up and saw a big, fat, bright moon. It completely took me by surprise, like seeing a naked woman standing in a window.  For most people nothing could be more common but when you live in the city you don’t see much of the heavens. This may sound a bit sad for many people who take the night sky for granted.  I don’t mind my obstructed view seats of nature. City life is infinitely worth it for me. It’s not like I have no contact with nature. I’m out on my bike in the countryside several times a week which is more than most people—city or rural—can say.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Buscando pisos de lujo! - Looking for luxury flats!

Globexs busca nuevos pisos de alto nivel para sus clientes, tanto profesionales como empresas, en Valencia. Si es usted propietario de un piso de calidad en los siguientes vecindarios, estaríamos interesados en una colaboración a largo plazo: Carmen, Ruzafa, Canovas, Avenida de Francia, Avenida Pius XII, Gran Via, and Malvarrosa. Ofertamos propiedades para su alquiler diario a empresas locales y extranjeras. Contacte con nosotros para más información:

Globexs is looking for new quality apartments for our expats and corporate clients in Valencia. If you own a luxury flat in the following neighbourhoods we are interested in a long term cooperation: Carmen, Ruzafa, Canovas, Avenida de Francia, Av Pius XII, Gran Via, and Malvarossa. Our properties are rented within days to foreign and local companies. Contact us ( for more information.

Valencia explained in 3 minutes

La Lonja de la Seda

10am - 2pm
4.30pm - 8.30pm
Sun & Hols: 10am - 3pm
closed Mondays

Built between 1482 and 1533, this group of buildings was originally used for trading in silk (hence its name, the Silk Exchange) and it has always been a center for commerce. It is a masterpiece of late Gothic architecture. The grandiose Sala de Contratación (Contract or Trading Hall), in particular, illustrates the power and wealth of a major Mediterranean mercantile city in the 15th and 16th centuries.

La Lonja was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996 for being one of the most stunning, most important and best preserved examples of Late Gothic architecture in entire Europe. Built in the beginning of XVI century, La Lonja (Silk Exchange) is the real emblem of the Golden Age of Valencia - the times when this city was one Europe's main cultural and economic centers - and this is precisely why La Lonja was built. As such, no expense was spared on the lavishness and luxury of the architecture here.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Museo de la Ciudad

Museo de la Ciudad
Plaza del Arzobispo
46002 Valencia
963 525 478 ext. 4126

10:00 - 14:00 16:30 - 20:30
Sunday 10:00 - 15:00

A rather eclectic selection, to say the least, but this little museum is well worth the visit. Set out in chronological order, the collection begins with the XV century. The building itself dates from the XVIII century, although the façade is from the 19th when the building was refurbished. The ground floor is for temporary exhibitions as well as the reception area. 
Interior Courtyard

Monday, August 8, 2011

Pesto Garbanzos with Stuffed Piquillo Pepper

I think this dish actually looked better when I plated it up yesterday for a lunch at my new apartment than it does in this photo taken this morning (no battery yesterday). I stuffed the piquillos* with chorizo and soft cheese and pan sautéed them in olive oil (of course!).  I made the pesto with hazelnuts just because pine nuts are horribly expensive and I don’t want to support the pine nut industrial complex. I need to start harvesting my basil plant in earnest now because I think it has reached its peak. This recipe is a keeper and will be on the menu of my restaurant.

*Piquillos are peppers grown in northern Spain, roasted and canned. They are sweet and spicy and amazing. The name means little beak because they are triangular when processed and look like a bird’s beak, sort of.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Laundry Fatality?

I'm not trying to jinx myself; all that I'm saying is that it wouldn't be completely unthinkable for a person to fall out of the window while reaching out to hang clothes on the last line. I'm not talking about me, of course.  I'm talking about someone without my cat-like reflexes and uncanny sense of balance, although it wouldn't have to be the clumsiest person in the world to have a nice fall from the fourth floor. Note to self: only hang out clothes when sober.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Liverpool FC vs. Valencia CF

A pre-season warm-up for Valencia CF as they head to Anfield to face Liverpool FC. Charlie Adam and Jordan Henderson will be making their home debuts for Liverpool while Valencia will try to mark up another win in their off-season campaign.The match kicks off at 18:30.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Metro Valencia

Metro Valencia network consists of more than 134 kilometers (83 mi) of track, of which around 19 kilometers (12 mi) is below ground. Whether you are trying to get around inside the city or going out to the far-flung suburban areas Metro Valencia may be your transportation of choice. Bikes are allowed on the above ground stations but below ground only on Saturdays before 14:00 and all day on Sundays. Fares range from 1,40€ to 2,60€ depending on how many zones you cross and a 10 ride card can be purchased for as little as 6,55€ for the A Zone which includes all of the city of Valencia. Valenbisi stations can be found near almost every metro station to compliment your transportation needs.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Gazpacho Andaluz

I always say that it never really feels like summer until I make my first batch of gazpacho. I have yet to make gazpacho this summer because it hasn't been hot at all. I really like gazpacho on a swelteringly hot day. I’m still waiting for one of those to come along and it’s already the fourth of August. The trick with gazpacho is adjusting the seasoning after you make it. It’s best to leave it in the fridge to chill thoroughly then taste it to see if it needs salt, vinegar, or olive oil.

It’s only supposed to reach 30 degrees today but I think I will make gazpacho in spite of the cool temperatures we’ve been experiencing. I’m not complaining, mind you, but I’m one of the few people that I know who actually enjoys the heat.

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