One More Cup of Coffee in Valencia

coffee cheers

You know that excited yet ‘where-on-earth-am-I?’ feeling of waking up in a totally new place, usually when you’re on holiday?  Times that by a hundred and it probably describes my 7.30am wake up courtesy of señorita sol pero no me quejé – I didn’t complain.  It’s the first time in months I’ve woken up with such urgency and a ridiculous to-do list.  If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from spending a bit of time in Spain a few years ago is that the more you stress about something, the less progress you’ll make; you may as well just succumb to the ‘Spanish way’, chill out and know that everything will happen when it’s meant to.  Besides, the only type of stress I’m entertaining here is in relation to polysyllabic words.

So with a work contract and quick obligatory besos with the new jefe, I made my way to Plaza España in the centre to desayunarTA:  I love the different words for eating in Spain (desayunar, comer, almorzar, merendar, cenar, picar, picotear…)  I guess it reflects the importance of eating regularly, enjoying the whole process, heated discussions, catching up with friends and family.  My Spanish compi thinks that Spain is unique in this way, that in no other culture in the world do you find people eating so late in the evening or dragging out a meal so much.  I argued that Italy was pretty similar but we agreed to disagree on this particular point!  Anyway, the breakfast was muy rico (un café, un zumo de naranja, una tostada con tomate all for 3,20€.  The waiters in the café were very hipster and didn’t one bit the fact that I spent an hour and a half there reading The Handmaid’s Tale (which I highly recommend, for the record!) Through some miracle of Díos  I managed to get my NIE (Numéro de Identidad de Extranjero) and Seguridad Social number in the space of about two hours.  Keep an eye out for another post which will tell you how to do this is you’re moving to Valencia! I’ve met people who’ve had a real pesadilla trying to sort this out because they simply didn’t know what the trámite was.  On my first visit to Valencia this year I was sent to the wrong comisaría as the official I spoke to just assumed that I was from Canada without actually telling me that she had made this assumption.  I ended up in a line for visa/refugee applications for three hours until it dawned on me that something didn’t quite feel right.  I must say that the sad state of affairs that followed was a real eye-opener.  I was only treated with an ounce of respect and dignity once the policeman dealing with my ‘asignación’ saw my British passport.  I wonder two golden the British passport will remain post-Brexit?  Had better get accustomed to the visa queue.  After all, us Brits like queueing, don’t we?

After this, it rained buckets so took shelter for a while and just people-watched.  I went to my first Meet-Up here too later that day, a dinner in a quirky Italian restaurant in Ruzafa (total hipster area) with around 25 other girls.  Pretty nice bunch of open-minded and friendly autónomas who I’d definitely like to get to know more.

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Side notes:

  • Daughter album is out – pretty good but why so many instrumental songs?
  • NIE & SS done – ridiculous sense of achievement
  • Friends made.  Phew!
  • Cabify driver offering lifts ‘particulares’.  Proceed with caution!



Did you guess the song?

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Bob Dylan – One More Cup of Coffee

Your breath is sweet
Your eyes are like two jewels in the sky
Your back is straight your hair is smooth
On the pillow where you lie
But I don’t sense affection
No gratitude or love
Your loyalty is not to me
But to the stars above

One more cup of coffee for the road
One more cup of coffee ‘fore I go.
To the valley below.

Your daddy he’s an outlaw
And a wanderer by trade
He’ll teach you how to pick and choose
And how to throw the blade
He oversees his kingdom
So no stranger does intrude
His voice it trembles as he calls out
For another plate of food.

One more cup of coffee for the road
One more cup of coffee ‘fore I go.
To the valley below.

Your sister sees the future
Like your mama and yourself
You’ve never learned to read or write
There’s no books upon your shelf
And your pleasure knows no limits
Your voice is like a meadowlark
But your heart is like an ocean
Mysterious and dark.

One more cup of coffee for the road
One more cup of coffee ‘fore I go.
To the valley below.

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