I had never been to Gijon, so I asked my Spanish friend to take my family and me somewhere fun. We went to an old bar known for cider. They pour the cider from high up so it gets air and tell you to drink it quickly. It was an interesting experience, but not to my taste. I am normally a fan of cider, but this tasted somewhat bitter and harsh.
My friend ordered us local specialties to eat. We had pulpo that was so tender it melted in your mouth. My favorite dish was called fabada. It was a stew with white beans and chunks of bacon and sausage. I’ve never been so satisfied by a stew!
After eating, we broke off from the group and took a walk. We watched some surfers riding the waves on the beach before continuing on. We came to a large, pretty park before heading back to the ship.
The following day was the ship’s first time porting in Bilbao. I had no idea what to expect, but was surprised by how cosmopolitan the city was. Chic women and men in suits roamed the streets, and the shopping looked fantastic.
We went straight to the Guggenheim Museum. I’ve been to the Guggenheim in New York, but wasn’t aware that there were others. In front of the museum was a giant puppy covered with flowers. The building was almost more impressive than the art inside! The architect, Gehri, designed the museum with intersecting curved and slanted walls. Audio tours, included with the ticket price, explained the inspiration behind the design, and also mentioned the challenges of constructing the waving walls of stone.
My favorite gallery was full of copper structures by Frank Stella. My favorite museum back home, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, has a piece by Stella out front. Seeing more of his work was fun, and reminded me of home.
After quickly exploring some of the other galleries, we hit the road in search of food. We ended up at a small café for tapas and wine. I left the city wishing we ported there again!