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Fallas 2010: Exposición – 9th Place

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A free-fall in the final standings for Exposición-Mícer Mascó, who finished in 4th place last year, and 3rd in 2008. And what can you say… they didn’t deserve much better than 9th, with a monument lacking in humor and ripe in sentimentality.


Filmed with the Sanyo VPC – CS 1 (super tiny) available here: USA, UK, Deutschland and Spain

“We can give you confidence, but…” was the motto, and the figures were concentrated on abuses of confidence. The monument featured two over-stressed grandparents and a number of demanding, mischievous children — taking advantage of them.

Although the main monument didn’t fare so well with the judges, the Infantil did, and took home the top prize. A lot of the ninots were really fun, and Exposición was honored to have the one ninot which is saved from a fiery death by the public this year. So it was far from a total wash for the commission.


Saved Ninot 2010:


For hostel/hotel bookings during Fallas, we’ve found the best rates at Hostelbookers, and Apartments in Valencia

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April 21, 2010 at 2:54 pm Comments (2)

The Ubik Café & The Tapa del Libro

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If you’re not familiar with the Ubik Café in Ruzafa, then you’re missing out on one of the coolest hangouts in the city.

The Ubik is more than just a bar or café… it’s also an incredible used & new book store, with a great selection of titles; mostly Spanish, though there are a few English boxes. The prices are great, especially on old, beat-up books, and the vibe in the café is unbeatable. Dogs run around freely, there’s an area for kids to play, and everyone seems chilled and probably a little bit cooler than you are. I recently picked up an old Agatha Christie for €1,50, ordered an Alhambra, and spent a couple hours on an old couch.

In celebration of the Feria del Libro currently going in the Turia Riverbed, the Ubik is holding a little fiesta of its own on Friday evening: The Tapa del Libro. For €3, you get a used book, a tapa, and a glass of wine. Not bad!!

The Ubik is popular anyway, and it’s almost impossible to find a spot to sit on Friday nights. So, I’m assuming that it’s going to be packed full for the Tapa del Libro. But for a deal like that, I’m willing to submit myself to a crowd. Besides, I’m already done with that Agatha Christie book. Maybe I can find an old Sherlock Holmes…

Tapa del Libro at Ubik
Friday, April 23rd at 8pm
C/ Literato Azorín 13
Location on our Valencia Map
963 741 255

Used books for 1 Euro, 1 Pound or one dollar!

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April 21, 2010 at 11:43 am Comments (4)

41st Annual Book Fair in the Viveros Gardens

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There are a number of book fairs in the city, but perhaps the biggest and best of them all is the Fira del Llibre in the beautiful Viveros Gardens. This year’s festival kicks off today, and runs through the 2nd of May. Plenty of time to get there, find a good summer read, and then spend a couple of hours with it in the park.

We like it almost as much as the Wine Festival! Oh oh, now I’ve done it. Don’t be upset, Book Festival… we like you, too! We like you both, just in different ways. You’re more the type we’d eventually like to settle down with, but it’s just that… the Wine Festival is a little more fun, you know? And we’re still young!

For the next 13 days, the stands will be open from 11 to 14h and 17 to 21h. Considering the amount of programs, reading-related activities for kids, and a huge list of book signings, you might want to check out their website before heading over.
Location on our Valencia Map

Used books for 1 Euro, 1 Pound or one dollar!

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April 20, 2010 at 1:13 pm Comment (1)

Fallas 2010: Duque de Calabria – 8th Place

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The Special Section monument closest to our apartment wasn’t one of the most celebrated. But Duque de Calabria’s ode to eavesdropping still had a lot of great aspects. “But Don’t Tell Anyone” was the theme, and featured two buñuelo-munching ladies as its centerpiece, engaged in their favorite occupation: gossip.


Filmed with the Sanyo VPC – CS 1 (super tiny) available here: USA, UK, Deutschland and Spain

Around them, various characters try to listen in on the goods. A waiter pouring out more coffee, a maid engaged in dusting, an old man listening in from atop a coat rack (one of their husbands?), a cat holding a mic with its tail, and a fat kid with a webcam, recording the gossip for the YouTube generation.

The ninots were good, too… highlights included a double-headed Rita and the Queen kissing a donkey (based on a real picture!). We also loved the cut-away of an entire house full of people listening in on the amorous action of one of the inhabitants.

8th place is maybe a disappointment, but a step up from their 2009 finish. Progress!


For hostel/hotel bookings during Fallas, we’ve found the best rates at Hostelbookers, and Apartments in Valencia

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April 20, 2010 at 8:31 am Comment (1)

22nd Festival of Wine and Sausage

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For us, one of the highlights on the Valencian calendar is the yearly Wine Festival, celebrated in the Turia riverbed. The Mostra de Vins i Menjars offers cheap wines and food (for €10, you get 4 glasses of wine and 4 samples of sausage or cheese), in a wonderful location.


Valencians show up to this festival in droves and, by around 9pm, everyone on the grounds will be buzzing, providing an exciting and boisterous atmosphere. It’s easy to fall into conversation with both vendors and other attendees; inhibitions are largely not present.

The festival, which began on Wednesday evening and runs through Sunday the 18th, features over 140 stands. We plan on visiting all of them… let’s see, 3 days, 140 glasses of wine. Doable.

Keep in mind that the closing time is early, at 10pm, probably to avoid drunken late-night rowdiness. If you’re in Valencia, we highly recommend this feria — go, sample some wines, and buy a couple bottles of your favorites.

Sausage Festival in Requena

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April 16, 2010 at 9:22 am Comments (3)

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