We drove around base, got some gas, went out of the gate toward Puerto. We’re looking for a third friend. When we got to her, at her house, we said goodbye to her dog (cute dog), got in the car. The Spanish children were out banging sticks, had another dog with them, we drove off. Talking about what we were going to do in the car—going to an amusement park in Sevilla, Isla Magica—but we didn’t know how to get there. So we started toward Jerez, and as we left Puerto, we all thought: everything is beautiful here.
To Jerez from the highway, its town is sprawled, but simple, with houses of orange, yellow, cobbled and painted roofing shingles, pretty iron gates and the shops stores and houses all blend into each other, with spaces for living, people moving about, talking and sipping in cafes. The intersections in Spain are mostly roundabouts. There are very little of these in the States. They help the flow of traffic in a sort of dangerous way, but I have not seen an accident yet, only a number of close calls. The Spanish never seem to care. They are always happy, happy nearly dying, happy sitting around. They make great friends, but are less well in other sorts of relationships, but that’s ok, we’re taking a roundabout, finding another highway now, and the road opens up in a way to the American eye that can only be described as impossible.
The Spanish have erected a number of towering bull avatars on the hills, speckled about, graying out in the distance. The metal bulls were often seen close to Puerto, and as we moved away toward Sevilla their frequency disappears behind us. Then the road courses through a plateau, and I’m in the back seat, on the right side, and I’m looking out of the window, and far ahead upon a mountain created from hundreds of different colored hills rests a large and active village, and you can see a tower there, a castle, and there are some walls thinned around the village, and down from those hills are pastures and crops, rich summer farmland under a blue sky with straying clouds, the sun around the edge of it, and the hills continue to recede down an enormous valley between the village and I, falling down forever, the bottom pastures almost silver, flowers on every hill everywhere, animals grazing, our plateau cliffs down—the graceful prairies below it, the farmland continuing into the hills as naturally as flowers do. The wonderfulness is permanent, so undisturbed, so effortless and extreme, so very large—the hills and cliffs, the forever of the cliffs, the pastures, the tiny villages on hills with their castles in the distance—the view of them never ends; as we pass around a mountain, the land changes, it rises about, the land draws close, cows notice us, the road is open, no man is here.
The road moves us toward one of the villages on a hill, and we watch, joking and singing in the car.
How the village, just gray and strange in the distance, slowly grows until we move between two thick old buildings, and emerge into the center, our car taking a left on an avenue, then greeted on every side by motor bikes, vans, trucks with produce and simple machines, we're sort of lost but loving it, I watch a man lying on his brow into the entrance of a bar. It’s slightly afternoon: it’s siesta: people sleep in houses and flap rugs and there are the cafes going, kids batting a ball, then the village is over, it becomes something behind us as the road turns into a freeway again, a toll-booth. Then there’s another almost-accident. The Spanish must have just discovered how to drive.
This time the road presents us with closer farmland and pastures, and on the right window I see crops, which from the wrong angle seem of no order, but as we pass them directly in front we’re presented with their order of near-perfect rows—the rows stretch miles, and are circular, so that there is an optical illusion, a wheel of plant life that turns as we pass it, revealing its inner paths: olive trees.
We pass over a bridge and arrive into the rear of Sevilla. We find parking outside of Isla Magica, and beyond the wall of the lot we see a Log Floom. So we get to getting into the place, pay twenty Euro, and we’re in. Spanish people are everywhere. They’re simply people of course, yet they do smell more, and are much less shameful of their bodies or actions. I like that in them. In the lines of the rides they are always touching, making out, finding things to do, talk about, look at. They’re fine with each other and do not judge. It is a wiser way to live.
We ride the Log Floom, a very nice ride that you already know, then a few other water rides, then find a roller coaster (it goes upside-down) and ride that twice, then do a few more rides, go back to the Log Floom, a few more rides. After about five hours, the day is done, we’re tired, we get in the car, and we go back to Puerto.