Monday, August 26, 2019

Paella,,Splashed Wine and a new document

Each day touches me with excitement here in Toro.  I think pieces of my heart are lodged in this village.  Today a man at the juzgado (court) found my 2nd great grandmother’s death certificate for me.  I hugged him, he laughed, and Jenaro took a photo.  I learned when she died and where she lived and Jenaro walked to Calle de Trucos and we found the house.  He and Mercedes have helped me figure out my family puzzle along with their beautiful daughter Cintia.  I’d be lost without them.

I walked to Calle Santa Monica with Jenaro today, hoping to speak with a possible Marzo family descendant, but he wasn’t home.  I wrote a note and put it into his postal box with my contact info.  A neighbor told us to return at 8:30 tonight when they returned from work
Cintia took me to the plaza mayor afterward to meet her friends and she explained the paella competition now for the fifth day event for the feria.  There is a group called the Peña that is made up of several (15-18) groups of people who create paella every year for the festival in Toro.  Tourists cannot taste the paella that the juried judges taste and vote on... but if a person is lucky enough to be invited by one of the groups, one can taste and be part of it.  Today, this lucky person was me.

Cintia was raised here off and on, so she knows everyone.  Her friend asked if I wanted a limonada, lemonade while we waited for the paella to finish cooking.  Of course, I answered.  With the first sip, I knew it wasn’t the lemonade I expected.  Oh no.  The man laughed and started to explain the ingredients.  When he listed rosado wine, rum, lemons, Malaga sweet wine and...I just took a sip.  I knew I’d never remember... the paella was filled with rice, saffron, port, clams and giant shrimp.  Oh, my. Stupendous.

Watching all the groups preparing their special paella was interesting.  I could feel the excitement in the air and oh, the aromas were wonderful.  When I was given my plate of paella, I could hardly believe the amount of food on the plate.  The giant shrimp had eyes, tentacles and was surrounded by clams, pork and yellow saffron-colored Spanish rice.  When I slipped the first bite in my mouth, I swooned.

AND A WINE TOSS in the plaza.  Everyone dressed in white.  Red wine was splashed over people’s heads.  Some people splashed water, but mostly wine.  As my friend Darla said. What a waste of  good wine.  When I arrived, the event began and I jumped away from the melee to avoid turning red with the vino all around me.  Very fun.

At 8:30, Jenaro, Mercedes and I returned to Calle Santa Monica.  Still no answer to Apartment 2A.  A neighbor told us that David Marzo may be away in another Pueblo because the noise from the feria here was too much for them to endure.  My fingers are crossed that he will answer my note one day...

My cousin, Felix, sent me pages from my own book with notes to help in my investigation of the Silvan family from Fuentesaúco and my cousins here read all the pages.  This has become a big family project for sure.  I have a good idea of where the family members fit into my tree, but I must return home again to pull out my files and get to work on the puzzle.

There was so much adventure loaded in the day that I can’t encapsulate it because it is now 1:00 am and we took our usual, leisurely walk to the cantina and I’ve had too much wine to think straight.  So, photos will tell the tale.  First, the clerk at the court giving me that fantastic document about my gggrandmother...and more.

Tomorrow a bus to Madrid and a train to Malaga,

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