Dispatches From My Phone: Valencia, Beaches and Senzone Restaurant

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24 hours in Valencia has taught me three things: I miss the ocean, I miss God and still seek redemption, and Parisian pastry still rocks my world. After visiting the cathedral in Valencia, I headed directly to the Mercado Central. A much more useable market than the Boqueria in Barcelona, I felt like I could shop here on a weekly basis, if only for the extraordinary apple Banda.

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Speaking of which…I made a lunch and breakfast of a 5.90 euros pastry from Deleite select pasties in the market. I have to say that this was the best pastry outside of Paris or Montreal. If in Valencia, then spend the dollars and add a Starbucks Latte to the mix. Ummm, and yes the server girl excitedly wrote down my name, recognized from Friends, Chelder. Ha ha ha. I felt like an idiot.

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Next I found myself at the bullfighter’s ring. Nothing much to see here, Hemingway, until tomorrow. Move on.

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The beach made me weep. It was glorious to touch my feet into the mediterranean sea; it was warm and reminded me of the best day ever on a PEI beach. Unlike PEI, half- naked women traipsed the shoreline, and I have to admit that Valencians are too full of their appearance. Perhaps I am ugly, but I felt like I would never match their expectations for beauty here; yet, it is hollow. I never met a nice person in the city, despite there being a super high ratio of beautiful people here. Like a town where Ferrari were the only ride, the price would be too high and empty. Give me thoughtful aging over naive, proud beauty any day.

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Dinner led me tithe downstairs restaurant, Senzone. I wanted simple, higher end and unique. With a giant calvados, a bigger grappa, and a glorious paella with octopus ( it was under the guise of fideua) I felt alive again. I needed the salt after a sweaty travel day. I am usually against hotel restaurants, but have found them to be a wise choice this summer.

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Tomorrow finds me back in Barcelona. I have two nights in the city before I desperately try it make a Geneva connection to Washington. If I get there, then I will think about going into town, but I may just choose to stay at the Aloft. I have a cooking class in Barcelona on paella and catalan creme. If all goes well I will walk away with photos, recipes mastered and a few stories. I will definitely wear the python boots!

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