Friday, 13 April 2012

Five Things...

... I learned in Granada. 
  1. The Hotel Granada Center is beautiful, a tall triangular prism of gold and glass, punctuated with vegetation.  I have a mini-bar, too, which is always appreciated: it might be too expensive to actually drink anything out of there, but the ability to stick one's head in a fridge after a hot Spanish afternoon should not be undervalued.
  2. This technically is something I already knew, but it bears repeating: the old city on the east side of the current city boundaries is exceptionally attractive, all statues and fountains and strangely designed streetlights.  You take your life into your hands whenever you wander around there - the mix of narrow streets and Spanish drivers is not conducive to pedestrian safety - but it's still worth your time, and it's on the way to the Alhambra as well (which once again I lacked the time to really visit).
  3. If you do end up at that end of town, the Albhaca restaurant is stunningly good, and not too expensive by Granada standards.  The staff are very friendly, too, even when faced with the baffling foreign concept of "a vegetarian" (who's also "a pain in the arse", but that's another story).
  4. The western half of the city is still two thirds roadworks, one third feral dogs (whose attacks may or may not explain why there's been absolutely no progress at all on the half-built tram network since I was last here two years ago).  Naturally, this is where the Department of Information Science and Artificial Intelligence is located.
  5. Goddamn, but food is expensive here.  I don't know how much of that is standard and how much is due to the current bevy of financial crises rippling through the country, but it's a good job I have access to the university canteen [1]; otherwise, if I wanted anything beyond a diet of plastic-wrapped sarnies, I'd be lucky to get by on less than 20 Euros a day.
[1] Two plates of food with fruit and wine for 3.50?  That'll do!

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