Paella Dinner with the Olmos

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

We enjoyed our visit in Seville last Tuesday and the meeting of Manuel and Alicia Olmo. We were pleased to receive the following invitation, and at about 10am we started our second trip to Seville, about a three hour drive.

Dear Rod, Alicia and me want to increase the memory we have of our recent meeting. For this we have thought of inviting you, Brenda and Christopher to a "paella" in our home. I have cooked many paellas when I was younger and I hope the one that we are going to offer, I do as well as many of the ones I used to cook.

It will be an honor for us that you willingly accept.

Regards, Alicia y Manuel.

Chris Suarez, Brenda and Rod, Manuel and Alicia Olmo and their son. We had again driven to Seville and enjoyed the fellowship of Manuel and his family. He had prepared a wonderful paella dinner. We started from Club Marbella about 10am and arrived at Manuel's home at about 1:45pm.


We had enjoyed the morning drive from Sitio de Calahonda to Seville.

When we arrived, Manuel was still working on the final touches for the paella for lunch. Chris joins him in the kitchen.

We had a good time of visiting in the kitchen. It was good to laugh together. Chris had a good time talking with both Alicia and Manuel and he could help translate for Brenda and I. On the shelf beside them are pictures of all the grandchildren, either six or seven.

Rod does his best to stay behind the camera, but Brenda got him out for a picture with Alicia.

It was a great pleasure for Rod to have this time of fellowship with Alicia and Manuel.

The fact that neither spoke the other's language didn't keep Brenda and Alicia from having a great time of visiting with one another.

Brenda and Alicia had time to become friends and can now treasure hearing about each other and communicating across the Atlantic Ocean.

I always joke that after any visit with a family, Brenda comes away knowing not only all the family members, but also the cats and dogs. Chris takes a snapshot of the paella before lunch, I suspect to send to his father Angel to make him jealous.

Finally the table was set with the beautiful paella in the center, and the thin-sliced Spanish ham and olives accompanying these dishes.

We had a wonderful visit with our paella meal and a good conversation with Manuel, Alicia and one of their sons who was able to join us.

After the meal we got this picture of Rod and Manuel. It does seem to be appropriate to have a picture of us together since we have worked together for the past six years on HyperPhysics. Manuel has been a great partner in that endeavor and we hope to continue to produce a completed work in both languages.

This was our gathering for this enjoyable occasion. Chris, Brenda, Manuel and Alicia with one of their sons and one of their grandsons.

The grandson was interested in the big camera, so we got him to take some group pictures for us. It turned out that he handled the camera well and we were pleased to have the picture of the group of us.

Feeling very privileged and grateful for having had these two visits with Manuel and his family in Seville, be said our goodbyes and started our journey back toward the south coast, or Costa del Sol. We now had our standard routine for exit from these complicated ancient cities: Brenda put our location at Club Marbella into her Verizon phone gps, then Chris held the gps in the front seat and guided me, intersection by intersection, as we navigated the complex sets of roundabouts and angular intersections.

Once we found the A-92 and followed it out into the open country, we could relax on the excellent cross-country autovias.
I enjoyed the church steeples, which though well-maintained, could have been very old. But all the farm equipment we saw looked very modern. It appeared to be wheat that they were harvesting, but it could have been oats.

Wheat in the foreground, some bands of sunflower, and then olive groves on the gentle hills in the distance.

After the wheat harvest, the land was used for grazing. Behind them are the ever-present olive groves.

There were large fields of sunflower along this stretch of A-92.

Here is a mature olive grove beside a young one. We heard stories about the development of different kinds of olives. Since they have been grown there for hundreds of years, it seems likely that the young grove is a replacement of an older one.

Since most of the land was in agriculture, the population was concentrated in cities. Since almost all buildings were painted white, nearly all the towns could be referred to as "pueblos blancos".

There were wind machines in several locations, so they are making a lot of use of wind energy. These are on the hilltops behind olive groves of various ages.

Osuna is another mostly-white city along the A-92.

Spanish farm country! The closer we got to the A-45, the more vast the expanses of olive trees. New groves have been planted in the foreground.

The vast olive grove regions were punctuated by the occasional pueblo blanco. I presume that's where the farmers and grovekeepers lived since there were very few dwellings among the groves themselves.

The large bridge structures told us that we were approaching the A-45 where we turned southward toward Malaga.

Here we start seeing the mountainous structures that are characteristic of the travel over the mountains to Malaga.

We traveled down A-45 to A-46 and through the outskirts of Malaga to the A-7 and then the AP-7 westward toward our accommodations. Along the AP-7 we get brief glimpses of the Mediterranean Sea to the south of us.

This was the kind of housing that was up on the mountainside near our Exit 200 from the AP-7.

These are the kind of glimpses of the sea that we get when coming down the mountain from the AP-7.

This was our last tantalizing view of the sea before we plunge into all the collections of buildings. In the center of this view with the orange roof is the Calahonda Baptist Church which we attended on Sunday.

We arrived back at our accommodations at Club Marbell at about 7:30pm, having driven 512km or about 300 miles for the round trip to Seville.


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