I’ll have a pot of your dead mother, please

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(View from the bed)

We’re here in the centre of the city of Oviedo. This morning I went off in search of the wall murals church. On the map it seemed to be beside the motorway, on the edge of town and I wondered if I might need a taxi. Denis assured me that it could only take twenty minutes to walk and wasn’t it a lovely day (he was staying in the hotel to work!). I wasn’t completely sure but with the map marked showing the most likely route off I went.


(San Julián de Los Prados)

That moment, when I go off on my own in a new place, is for me like being on those narrow winding Picos roads. Exhilarating and scary. Where am I going? What if I get lost? What if something dangerous happens? What if it’s impossible to find? What if it’s closed? What if it’s open but they won’t let me in? What if they won’t let me out? Ok I’m making up some of those but you get the idea.


(San Julián de Los Prados – window)

And it’s not just about going somewhere new on my own. It’s about starting anything new. What if I can’t do it? What if it’s dangerous? What if it’s great and I have to give up everything else to do it? Scary stuff!



(Cloister of monastery near Cathedral)

So right after the fears come the excuses. So this morning there came a moment when I realised I was considering going to the Cathedral, which I’m not interested in, just because it was nearer and I knew how to get there…. But I didn’t do it! I went off to see the frescos in San Julián de Los Prados.

I shouldn’t have bothered.



(San Julián de Los Prados – wall outside)

Well, that’s probably a bit unfair. Maybe I’m a bit grumpy because the paintings were not what I was expecting. They were nothing like the ones in Jaca… and the guide woman wasn’t very friendly, so I couldn’t “ask” any questions about the mystery of the wall murals. Well, actually I did but she got a bit cross, she thought I wanted to take pictures. Perish the thought, earlier she had shouted “No foto” at an elderly man who hadn’t noticed the many signs. Of course since the frescos are so different, there’s probably no mystery. Anyway I bought a book from the guide woman. It’s in Spanish. Not really sure yet how that’s going to help. And what will I have to dump from Denis’ bag to fit it in?



(Heart Biscuit – yummy)

To cheer me up Denis took me for a green tea when I got back. We went to the Colonial Cafe where they had lots of different teas. At home, I drink my green tea from a huge mug so the little cups here haven’t been enough. So when I noticed on the menu that there were two sizes and prices for the green tea I pointed to the bigger one and asked for “mesa”, when the waiter arrived. The look on his face was priceless, a cross between “you have insulted my dead mother with your words” and “what the..?”. I had no idea what I’d said and he seemed speechless. After a few moments of him looking up to the sky and around at the other tables and pointing to himself, I said “Quiero te verde, por favor” (I want green tea, please) and he was fine again. When he left we searched the dictionary to work out what had happened.

You remember I said there were two sizes and prices for the green tea? That’s not what they were….. One, was the price if you ordered at the bar and the other was for the waiter service… This Spanish is tricky.


Felicidad (Good luck), Mairead.