Thursday, July 31, 2008


On June 31st we arrived at the port of Valencia, on the east coast of central Spain. The bus ride took about 20 minutes from the port to the city centre with a stop for photos at the futuristic Arts and Science Centre (photo above). The Centre includes a science museum with inter-active exhibits (we did not have time to go inside so we just had to trust the tour guide that the exhibits were great for both adults and children). I thought of my brother and his son as they would have enjoyed playing and learning at this museum. There were also the "Hemesferic" planatarium and the oceannarium (top 2 photos) which again based on what the tour guide told us "a spectacular underwater city of the marine life". We spent about 20 minutes in an open garden across from the planatarium. When we tried to cross the street to get back to the bus on the other side of the road, while my husband and I waited to the traffic lights, other people decided to run across and one of them almost got hit by a group of motorcycles. Here is my report - people in Spain also drive on the right side of the roads as in the States.
After leaving the modern city centre, we visited the Cathedral Metropolitana, the Plaza del Ayuntamiento, the central square of the old town with buildings of mixture architectural styles of Gothic, Romanesque, and baroque. The Cathedral is known for supposedly as the home of the Holy Grail from which Jesus shared communion with his chosen disciples at the Last Supper. I enjoyed this part of the tour as I was more interested in seeing historic churches, not the typical modern, sprawling and industrialized city centre.
My Spanish came in handy when I was not sure if I had to pay to use public restrooms. As I walked towards one of the toilets, a lady stopped me and she said "Un momento". So I said to her, "Dinero necesita?". She said no so I waited behind her. Turned out, she was waiting for her daughter. Almost 20 years later, two words I still remembered from my Spanish courses at Hunter College were put to practical usage!

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