Again I find myself trying to describe something that is best done visually, unless one is going to sound like Wikipedia, source of Liberal Party wisdom. Given the fact that the online encyclopedia seems to be able to make Greg Hunt and quite possibly other Tory politicians sound like morons, this is not to be countenanced.

However, I digress, which is a good excuse for noting that, all the while we have been hobnobbing in Spain, if not bunburying our way through España, New South Wales has burnt. I don’t think this part of Spain would see too many wildfires: agriculture seems to dominate the landscape and, unlike Catalonia, there is no forest industry to speak of. Olives and grain are everywhere around Seville, so while the climate may be familiar, the countryside of Andalusia is hot, dry, flat and bare of trees. It has seemed hard to imagine the trauma of what is happening at home, and it is not over yet.

Today’s trip to Granada was focused on the Alhambra, of course, but the train trip — slooow — took us into the mountains, to the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. It was suddenly cooler and, while the mountains are bare of both trees and snow, it was easy to imagine them in winter, white dominating the skyline behind the palaces and walls of the Alhambra.

It is surely one of the most beautiful spots in dearth, and we walked through the gardens past the ruins and through the palaces.


Lunch was a hoot: of course it was Saturday, everyone was on the streets and it was a struggle to know what was a good place to eat and what wasn’t, so we applied the thinking cap and decided that the most reliable form of hospitality in the world was an Irish Pub. The most logical place to find an Irish pub in the world would be near the Alhambra, wouldn’t it? So we had great hamburgers provided by a slightly mad Irishman, watching Liverpool play Newcastle as three red-clad fans fooked their way through the match! Paula’s gin and lemon squash was suspiciously strong, but I don’t think Liam and I realised that she had sunk a triple until she genuflected to the organ when we walked through the Cathedral. A merry time!