Last night we crossed the river for dinner and what a different experience it was after almost a solid week of being crushed by tourists.
Triana is sort of the upper scale working class district of Sevilla, a bit of the charm of Santa Cruz and not anonymous like the apartment blocks around the train station, but noticeably grittier and so much more peaceful. Unless you want a late evening drinking and flamenco experience, there is really no reason to go there. However, I’d suggest that a slower rhythm and lower din might be reasons in themselves.
It’s a bit of a walk but once across one of the bridges that bracket Triana, life changes immediately. We chose a small café with tables lined up along the river and had a nice meal of fried cod, ham croquettes and broiled mushrooms. The people around us were all locals, many taking about work or their days, a much more real-life experience than can be gained in the bodegas of the old town. We sat and talked and took a long time enjoying our meal, not having smokers walking by or tour group members checking out our meals. The sun went down, the lights came on and our masterpiece of a bridge, Isabel II, was suddenly bathed in pale blue light. The last of the kayakers on the water went wherever they were going and La Giralda was clearly visible to the east, brightly shining yellow above the low roofs of old town and the bull ring. A really nice evening.

Sometime in the last 24 hours I got pounded by allergies and so I was less that flexible in my mood when we went out for coffee this morning. For some reason our little café, Los Milagritos, can’t seem to figure out what time it opens. MLW asked the waiter at 11 what time they’d be serving and he brusquely responded “I don’t know” before shouldering her aside to go back to setting up tables. Starbucks was loaded with American college students, as were the streets. After two days of relative calm, we are suddenly inundated with tour groups – there were literally hundreds of people milling around in front of the cathedral this morning.

We tried one restaurant where we couldn’t get waited on and finally settled on another where at least the waiter was in a cheery mood. We finally got some coffee and a couple of cold croissants and spent a good hour talking about life and running a fashion commentary on the passersby. Many older people were walking around in a seeming daze with little yellow numbered stickers on their shirts, no doubt some reference to the tour they happen to be on. Although a sharp contrast to our sublime dinner of last night, it was still a great way to spend the morning. Writing postcards, savoring an Americano and a Café au Lait and just sitting in the eye of the hurricane. Complete peace in our little bubble, surrounded by people doing whatever it is that they do.