All posts filed under: Travel

early morning at the mercado central de atarazanas

Mechanical, beautiful, merciless. There they stood, gutting and chatting, fishmongers all, masters of their craft, placidly ignoring the one or two mad people (hello) early enough to have arrived at the Málaga food market – the Mercado Central de Atarazanas – before the day’s wares were unboxed, the shutters rolled up, the fish disembowelled. They couldn’t give two figs that we were there. They weren’t going to rush; this is just how their days start. An easy flick of the wrist and the prepared anchovy whizzes into the box. New fish. Practised movement. Mind hardly on the task, more focussed on the chat, which, of course, we couldn’t understand – or look away from. We were meandering through the market, staring openly. The language barrier somehow making us invisible, or so it felt as we gaped, openly, at the links of chorizo, dangling from hooks. The huge heads of swordfish, de-bodied and staring at the metal roof, pointing their rapiers to the sky. Fuzzy sunset-coloured peaches. Gleaming red, yellow, green tomatoes. Tightly packed Padrón peppers, …

the joy of an aperol spritz

I was in Italy last year. It was a spur of the moment, run away from reality, throw yourself into life kind of trip. Change was happening and life was full of possibility. So, obviously, I wanted to go somewhere to properly experience the feeling. Since Italy is my happy place, off we went. J and I started in Bologna. Land of ragù. We expected to drown ourselves in olive oil and local wine, indulge in far too much pasta, and knock back rich, bitter espresso when we got footsore. What we did not expect was… the Aperol spritz. Having now imbibed more Aperol spritzes than I care to mention, I can tell you that the drink tastes like warm summer evenings and destination-less strolling through cobbled streets, ducking into monasteries to escape sudden rain storms. Sauntering into luxurious hotel bars and pretending I belonged. But most of all, every time I drink one, I feel happy. It’s a kind of deep breath, light-hearted happy. And I thoroughly recommend it. But before I tried one …