The AppleBarn Restaurant in The Smoky Mountains

www.youtube.com/watch

The setting is perfect for these restaurants and shops. They were built right beside the Little Pigeon River and we can hear the water running over the tops of big rocks there. There are trees and birds all over the property. The big country store has anything you can imagine with apples on it or in it and even apples themselves to buy. A new fun store has hard cider with many different flavors to try. After eating your meal you can find the candy and ice cream stores very satisfying too. Have fun and make it an evening not just a meal.

Fall Friendly Taco Soup/

Even in Florida they have fall, well sort of anyway.  Grandma Thelma, as all the kids call  her if they are related or not, had a big crock pot full of this tasty taco soup when we all arrived from north Georgia. After driving nine hours the smell alone had the kids gathering around the table before she could even ask them to do so. All the toppings were sitting in bowls so each person to choose what they liked best or do like me and use them all! Try this and you won’t be disappointed. This recipe is good for you with all the beans and tomatoes. Leave the chips in their bowl if your watching your carbs. 🍁

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Seville/ flamenco dancing 

Less than 3 hours away from Merida is Seville, Spain, famous for its flamenco dancers and bull fighting. It’s filled with old buildings that ooze history and charm. It has beautiful cathedrals and museums. The Seville University is close to the train tracks and bus stops which give it easy access for students. As David, Rebecca and I searched for parking we quickly found out the “P” signs everywhere did not mean parking! Instead they are a rating for hostels, “P” meaning cheaper ones, where an “H” meant more expensive. Both are clean and governed by the government, so either is fine to stay in. Now, this was nice to know, but back to  finding parking. As we drove around and around David finally stopped right in the middle of one of the courtyards where a wedding was about to take place, got out, and talked with a policeman. Because David can speak and understand Spanish, he easily followed the directions. Turning right here and left there, our streets were getting more and more narrow with people  and bicycles still coming toward us. We felt like Chevy Chase in his famous “European Vacation” movie. Honestly, we were all getting so nervous at this point because as the cobblestone streets became more and more narrow we were worried we might have to back out!! Eventually we found a road to take us out and it didn’t matter how far away we had to walk, we weren’t going down that path again. Time for lunch and sangria!

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We didn’t go to the flamenco dancing show this time, but several years ago we did. It was fun to see them tell their stories in their bright colored attire, all with the loud sounds of their shoes hitting the wooden floors. I will come back again later this trip and enjoy an evening here with family. Seville is a marvelous city with many choices of restaurants and things to do. 💃

There’s even Starbucks on most corners. Of course we stopped in. Their iced coffee is very appropriate for the extreme heat here, too.

Sharing Merida, Spain

How did the Romans know how to build bridges to last so long?  From my understanding this is the oldest operational Roman Bridge in the world. As I stand here looking to the other side I see the town square where the Roman theater is and restaurants and shopping markets. Just a 10 minute walk. I feel like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz as I stand here looking beyond. It’s lasted this long, it’s not going to crumble now! So here I go.

Oh, wait. There’s a Hostel right next to this bridge and it’s time here for sangria and tapas. I can already smell the potato omelettes cooking with hints of onion and peppers. I must try this now!

 

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And I have no idea what kind of tree this is or if it’s against the law to pick from it, but I will be finding out!

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