"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to let you in."

-- Robert Frost

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

culture with kids

Someone once told me to spend as much time as I could with my big kids because they are up and gone so darn quickly and younger children seem to just get more time in the long run. Something to do with a mother less divided in her attentions down the line.

That may or may not be true.

I am a worrier about all ages getting everything they need from me at all times.

Somehow, there just never seems enough.

Big people try to talk, little people interrupt with needs, back burners happen and moments pass.

True enough, I have often looked up and recognized that baby cries for attention have left me wondering how my big kids are suddenly slipping out of my house. Now days they are going quite literally and for good.

Every stage is amazing but balance is always tricky.

One afternoon, Newel needed to get some work done. He offered to keep little folks and I jumped at the chance to explore with the teenagers.

And we had soooo much fun together.

We headed into Seville to see a Flamenco show complete with soulful singing, dancing and acoustic guitar.

Tap dancing always was my favorite back in the dancing days and the girls had a good laugh at my herky jerky feet struggling to hold still.

Christian was a sport, but the rest of us really loved it.

We took a walk along the Guadalquivir river in all it's picturesque beauty.

We caught the last tour of the afternoon of the Plaza de Toros which is their bull fighting ring.

I think a bull fight was on someones wish list but it got a thumbs down from the parentals ... so these guys had to settle for the tour.

While we waited for the tour to start, we had a minute and I was just soaking in all that these favorite people are.

The sun was slanting just right over the eaves and sitting on the curbside, cooling ourselves and chatting away, held a kind of magic.

Inside, we were blown away.

We were taken through the museum in the halls below where we learned a bit about the origins of bull fighting.

Neat to learn that bull fighting was actually an early way to train horses in military tactics and instill calm under pressure in battle.

Nowadays, the sport is a lot less necessary and not really smiled upon by animal lovers everywhere.

Still ... whether one approves or not ... it is it's own cultural art and I love to find beauty in art everywhere.

Even an inhumane one.

So, I found the tailoring of the costuming and it's richness of gold threads and beading depending on valor to be just gorgeous. Our farming natures were enthralled by the husbandry of the bulls. The evolution of the bull fighting schools from it's military roots was pretty educational. And interesting as well to learn that the technique and trade is passed along in families from father to son with some royal pedigree in there, too.

Standing outside the starting gate, I could almost hear the roar of the crowd, feel the adrenaline, and see the horses of the matadors tied and ready for action.

Mostly, I was just loving exploring Spain's culture with these kids.

The afternoon was slipping by so we headed back down to the water front.

We came upon some boys bridge jumping in the late afternoon.

And well ... Christian just had to strip to his skivvies and join right in.

The girls and I sat to take in the show while yelling encouragements and discouragements, alternately, because both were needed.

Boys will be boys and even without a common language, Christian makes fast friends no matter where he goes.

We had a long way to go back to our car park so we snagged some city bikes.

We rode along the river delighted by the most gorgeous sunset.

By the time we were headed home, the time was creeping close to midnight. That Spanish sun does not set early.

We had heard that we really should have churros con chocolate while we were in Spain. A few days earlier, we had asked a restaurant owner where to find that. I think he thought we were asking if he would serve that to us, but either way, very angrily, he crossed his hands cutting the air and yelled at us in broken English that what we were asking "Is Impossible!!"

He walked away pretty mad.

We walked away laughing for days about wanting the impossible.

After docking our bikes, we walked by a shop advertising churros con chocolate and we stood for a second telling each other "It is impossible!!"

While we had our good laugh together, the shop keeper came out and smiling hugely, dragged us in and made us sit while he opened his frier filling us up with churros con chocolate. 

At midnight.

He was the best.

After our long hot day, those churros were amazing.

And nothing is impossible.

One of my favorite days ever.

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