Thursday, June 9, 2011

One month in the Pyrenees

Trips, trips, trips. I have just arrived to La Seu and I have already got to know lots of beautiful places in the neighborhood.
I have arrived to Barcelona on 1 May and came to La Seu on the same day. The bus journey took 3,5 hours, but I was not bored only for a minute. I could not believe it! The mountains were so huge and amazing, I thought it can’t be anything else but a dream.:)
Cortiuda, 03rd May
I did hardly arrive, I had lots of sort trips in the first month. For the very first time we went to the top of the 1014 meters high Cortiuda by car. It is as high as the highest peak in Hungary, that is called Kékes. During the trip we stopped at more places like Oliana or Peramola.
Castellbo, 04 May
Next day we went to Castellbo, which is a very small village, with only 17 inhabitants:). Living together with only 16 persons? Perfect. No noise, no traffic, no air pollution. We visited the church and the ruins of the castle.
It was really impressive for me, I love small villages. But it’s good to know if you’re not a farmer, or your job is not a home-based one, life is a bit harder in a small village like this. You have to work in a bigger town or village in the neighborhood, for this reason you have to have a car, because the public transport is not the best, there are only very few buses and your children have to go to school in a bigger village/town. (It is said that nowadays some school buses pick up children from the small villages.) But. Is it not better to wake up to the songs of birds or to cock-crow, than the noise of the traffic? :)
Ortedo, 07-08th May
The next beautiful village I saw was Ortedo. It is also tiny little, but beautiful as well. In fact we had the Stop Motion training here, so it wasn’t a so called trip, but we could have a look at the village. This place become very memorable for me, because I ate snails there for the first time in my life. And I am sorry, but snails are not for me. I am pretty sure that it was the last time too.:) I love them, they are cute in a way, but not on my plate:). Till now I have never thought I would ever eat snails. But I did it. Now the question is: would I try - just because they are on my plate – dog or cat if I were somewhere on the East?

Castellciutat and Montferrer, 14-15 May
We usually go for small trips in the neighborhood with Kim on the weekends. One Sunday afternoon we went to discover the village of Castellciutat, the nearest village to La Seu. Meanwhile we were walking we decided to go to Arfa, but unfortunately we didn’t find the way, just a small footpath to Montferrer. Of course it was more exciting. We didn’t exactly know where do we go, but all of a sudden we found ourselves in Montferrer. Both villages were fantastic. There were only a few people on the streets, everything was peaceful and quiet. On the way back we stopped at the local pub in Castellciutat, where we found only two people. One was sitting at a table and reading a newspaper, the other one was sleeping at another table. But. Where is the innkeeper? We didn’t find him anywhere. Then a few minutes later the reading man stood up and woke the other man up. Because he was that. The innkeeper:) Then we drank a refresher and a beer on the sun and became much more red than before. It was a perfect Sunday afternoon.

Organa and Cabo, 18 May
Another obligatory trip to Organa and Cabo. We love these obligations. It was a class trip with little children. We started from Organa (that is rather a big village with almost a thousand of inhabitants) and we had a 1,5 hours long walk trip to Cabó. We had two nature guides, they talked about plants, animals or other interesting natural formations. The sun was shinning very strongly, but it was perfect for a trip. The kids were incredible. They wanted to know and see everything, they were running and fighting with each other all the time and never ran out of energy! Some of them spoke a little bit of English, e.g.: "Do you like banana?" – it’s a very important question.:) Kids are the best!
We had a big surprise during the trip. We were just walking and talking and than, suddenly, something appeared then quickly disappeared with a big noise. It was a scared deer who was afraid of people, and started to run away when realized us. Fortunately ,Kim was filming at the moment, and just for a very few seconds, but we have a video about it.

We visited the Church in Cabó and then we stopped to eat our lunch at the center of the village. It has only 99 inhabitants. There is a restaurant which is really good at snail foods. It is said. There are some funny big snail statues on its wall.

It was only about four p.m. when we finished our trip, but we were exhausted of walking on the sun.

Alas, 22 May
No, we weren’t bored of trips, so we decided to walk to another neighbouring village, called Alas, on Sunday afternoon. It’s not far from La Seu, just about 4 kilometers next to the Segre river. It seemed again that it will be perfect weather for a trip. But the weather is so mad here. Suddenly, it started to rain but the sun was still shining and it happened several times. We managed to arrive to Alas, but we felt its better to walk on and on. Than we walked higher and higher until we almost reached the top of Banat. Oh, the view. Awesome! On one part of the sky there were amazing sunbeams among the clouds and on the other one it was raining far away. Astonishing.

Tuixen, 28-29 May
Tuixen is about 50 kilometers far from La Seu and extends the southern slopes of the "Serra del Cadi", situated on a small hill in an open valley, Y-shaped.
The reason why we came here was the festival of the "trementinaires". They were local women who produced medicinal remedies from herbs and turpentine extracted from trees, to treat all sorts of ailments, from aches and pains to infections and insect bites. (You can get more information about it from Kim.) The festival itself was very nice, with lots of programs: traditional dancing, singing, theater for children, craft market, camp fire etc.
But to tell to truth, for us it was the weekend of gluttony. Food, food and more food.:) There is a really cool restaurant in Tuixen where we ate wonderful meals. Really much meals. Unfortunately, I haven’t noticed the names of them (they where in Catalan) and we don't have real pictures, but I’d like to share the experience. So the menu: first cheese, olives and sausage as starters. Then three(!) courses. First, cabbage with potato, three slices of black pudding and some bacon on the top. It is very simple but I liked it. Then, the tastiest salad I have ever eaten. With lots of green leaves, red cabbage, nuts, pomegranate and olive oil of course. The main course was fish with fried vegetables (I love vegetables!!!) and a kind of applesauce. At the end: baked apple. Hmmm. Marvelous.
Catalan salad (illustration):
We honestly needed siesta after this. I wasn’t hungry but we got dinner at the same restaurant in the evening. There were two courses and of course starters and dessert. Too much again. Ok, I don’t describe them, but you have to know, everything was perfect again.
As I wrote, Tuixen is 50 kilometeres far from La Seu. Yesss, 50 kilometers with bends. Till now, I thought I’m not afraid of traveling just because of bends. But I have to say that was awful. And not because of the driver, Isidre, he is a very good driver and he was very careful as well. But it is simply too much. And it does not matter if you sit on the back or on the passenger’s seat. So, sorry Tuixen, we meet again if I’ll have a helicopter…
This is about my first months. Yes, I haven't written about La Seu. Of course that is the most important, but another story...

1 comment:

  1. M'agrada molt la teva descripció de l'arribada !!!

    Me gusta mucho la descripcions de tu llegada!!!!