Thursday, August 22, 2019

Snafus before Toro, Spain

I thought jumping through my biggest hoop today, as I prepared for my visit with Mercedes and Jenaro in Toro, would be navigating the bus station. Not so.  First, after Caroline left for the airport, I wandered around looking for café con leche and desayuno, a Spanish breakfast.  Within minutes, I had café con leche and soon afterward my toasted pitufo (small bread roll) arrived with typical tomato and instead of a bottle of olive oil to drizzle over the top, I got a small plastic tub with a lid I couldn’t pry off with a pair of pliers. I asked the waiter for help and he shrugged and gave me a new one. What? Same innovative as I am and trying to keep the oil from drizzling over ME instead, I finally punched a hole in the top with the end of my coffee spoon. Thunk. Finally!

Later, as I entered the lobby to leave my room key, a handsome Spaniard dressed in a dark suit called my name. “Patricia?”  I stopped in my tracks for a moment until I realized it must be the taxi I ordered.  With a nice smile, he lifted my bags and nodded for me to follow him a black limo!  What on earth? I thought, oh boy, here we go. It sat beside a line of white taxis and looked like a raisin in the sun.  He drove me to the bus station. I pulled out a ten euro note, thinking the cost might be 7 or 8 euros and I nearly fainted when he handed me a slip of paper: 30 euros. Six minutes from hotel to station. Recognizing the scam, there wasn’t much I could do but pay the man. Next time, I shall flag down a taxi.

The bus station was easy to navigate.  After finding the platform that the bus would take me to Toro, I went back upstairs where I could wait on a bench for the next 90 minutes.  I learned the hard way that manipulating two suitcases down an escalator is very stupid.  Caroline told me so yesterday, but I’m an independent woman I told her.  I should have listened.  As I neared the bottom of the escalator to reach my bus, the front suitcase wheel staggered against the steel teeth that moved the moving steps into the floor...and took me down.  I fell backward and my butt hit the edge of the step behind me and then I landed on the suitcase I was pulling.  I couldn’t get up because the steps kept moving, trying to pull me into those steel teeth.  Five men rushed to help me; two pulled me off the escalator teeth, two grabbed my bags and the other man (a security guard) looked horrified and nodded toward the elevator beside me.  Very disoriented, I just reached for my bag, said gracias a hundred times and made sure my watch wasn’t broken and I didn’t have steel teeth marks in my pants.  Yes, Caroline, I hear you... and yes, I’m black as the ace of spades ♠️ on my bum.

But, within a few minutes, I was on my way, watching rolling hills of green, old buildings, little villages where the bus stopped along the way and enjoying the ride northwest along the Ruta de Duero, the route of the river Duero. (Ribera del Duero is fantástico wine...but I digress)  I especially liked the little village of Tordesillas and would’ve enjoyed some exploring...but my cousins were waiting for me in Toro.  Jenaro gave me a big hug and the kiss-on-each-cheek welcome and within minutes Mercedes greeted me the same way.  It is lovely to be here in the village of my ancestors.

We were on our way to their vineyard and country house by 5:30 to swim and relax. And I left both of my swimsuits at Lyn’s in Los Nuñez. Sometimes I do not think clearly!

They walked me to the bodega near the old clock tower for wine, so I wanted to post before I left.  It’s like Cinderella and the glass slipper; if I don’t publish the blog before midnight, it won’t post the next morning on my readers’ email!

No comments:

Post a Comment