Snapshot Saturday: the transformative effect of l’Albufera

My fortnight in Valencia is at an end. I’ve got the certificate to prove it, from my school of Spanish. And before you send me virtual pats on the back, it’s a certificate of attendance, not of achievement.

But goodness, I needed a break yesterday afternoon. This fortnight’s been full on. If I haven’t been doing Spanish, or watching Spanish TV with my hostess (not recommended), I’ve been getting a severe case of Museum Foot.

An afternoon at the sea? In the country? Why not both? L’Albufera is Valencia’s Natural Park. It’s a large fresh-and-seawater lake, a rice-growing marsh, and a sandbar. It’s beautiful, and only an eight kilometre bus ride from town. I spent the afternoon exploring the unexpectedly characterful Mediterranean maquis scrubland and a deserted beach.

But it was the last hour of all that was transformative, washing away a fortnight’s stress. Good stress, but still….

I got a trip on a boat which puttered slowly and quietly across the lake and through the reed beds as the sun set, herons and cormorants fished, and ducks patrolled the waters.  It was perfect, quite perfect.

26 thoughts on “Snapshot Saturday: the transformative effect of l’Albufera”

    1. Thank you. Going on my own meant I had nobody to relax with, which was exactly what I intended. But it did mean I filled every moment. Tired now! And so you speak Latin-American Spanish? A different challenge!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. What a lovely piece and photos, of ‘the little sea’. Is the structure a fish farm or something else? And do the herons and cormorants (both of which we now have on the Thames you know) benefit? I hope you had a good visit in Barcelona with chance to exercise some new language skills, and that you’ll indeed have a quiet, though not boring, week back home.


    1. It is indeed something to do with fishing. There were so many herons, cormorants and birds of all kinds (twitchers’ paradise) that it can’t be doing them any harm. I’m not using as much Spanish as I expected in Barcelona – yet. There’s still this morning. And I WANT a boring week at home. The duller the better.


  2. That’s very lovely. I hope you’re not too stressed out by your experiences … I got stir-crazy when I did a month in Barcelona, in spite of the fact that I love the city. It can be quite a lonely experience when no-one speaks your language, even though you’re there to learn theirs.


  3. A month? I’m more than impressed. I said on my last day that, good as the experience was, enough was enough. Yes, it was hard work, sometimes a bit lonely, and so many new experiences assaulting my senses day after day was just exhausting. I wouldn’t have missed it, but my own bed tonight in England is suddenly the best place on earth.


  4. It was. And the day before, I was at the Silk Museum in Valencia, another wonderful place. I decided not to blog about it, but you were very much in my thoughts as I went round. May I send you some photos via email?


    1. Oh, it was. So my time in Spain began and ended on the water…. and in between …. oof. Hard work. I am as interesting as a dishcloth this week. Not a dishcloth that you have made, obviously.


  5. I DID wonder why you hadn’t posted anything anymore since ‘Yesterday’s Town’…. and now I come to see you and find that you DID…. This Wp stuff is up to no good, it’s worrying. No info on new posts, nada….
    This is such great news, you got your certificate; who the heck cares what it says – attendance, whatever – you wanted to get to know Spanish better and by golly, you did! You are my hero.
    You so deserved this lovely and peaceful outing. It looks so calm and soothing Would be my medicine too. And whenever a boat trip is involved, this woman here is in heaven… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh dear. You ARE having a bad time. I wonder why? Have tyou tried to get in touch with one of the WP ‘happiness engineers’? Meanwhile, here in England it’s 3 degrees and last week’s heat is but a memory. I’m still hoping to make contact with a native-speaker teacher who’s local, but he seems elusive. Ah well. Thanks for your encouragement. I feel wiped out this week!

      Liked by 1 person

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