Skip to main content

Beer and ragamuffins

Cartagena has been celebrating its annual Carthaginians and Romans festival over the past week. There have been various re-enactments of key events in the story including weddings, seaborne landings, a pitch battle and lots of parades. 

Yesterday evening we saw the parade of thousands of people from the various troops dressed in their outfits and we also went on to the big camp where each of the groups sets up a bar cum restaurant to raise money for the next year's event.

It's all pretty impressive but, at the same time, it's also old hat; we've seen it before. Alongside the camp there is a market. The traders who spend most of the year selling their overpriced sweets, jewellery and cakes dressed in medieval costume, at medieval markets, don togas for this one. We wandered around, we drank spiced "Roman wine" we ate garum but the stall that impressed me most was one selling a microbrewery beer called Icue. 

There's a little statue in one of the main streets here that is called Icue and the locals all call the place he stands Icue Square even though there is no street name to back them up.The statue is of a young lad, one of the ragamuffins whose playground was the sea. The idea is that Icue embodies the Cartagena spirit, the links with the sea.  A local sports pundit goes by the same name. The two minibus routes that run through the centre of town are called Icuebus. 

The leaflet the beer sellers gave me stresses the quality of the Cartagena water, the quality of the barley and the hops and the American yeast that they use without frothing agents, preservatives, flavour additives, stabilizers etc. 100% natural. Better than the leaflet though was the taste. A really nice change from the usual lagers available here.

There may be microbreweries all over Spain for all I know. There were lots in the UK and I always did my best to help the profits of those enterprises but I don't remember ever seeing anything similar in Spain before.

I will be doing my best to support this particular local enterprise.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Looking for a flat

Finding a house to rent in Spain is usually a pretty straightforward process. When I say house I really mean flat because, although it's not impossible to find houses in the middle of a town or city, by far the most usual style of dwelling for urban Spaniards is the flat.
I need to qualify this a bit further. It's easy to find a place if you are willing to pay an estate agent. The other options involve walking around random streets looking for to rent signs with your mobile phone to hand. We've only ever done it a couple of times and it has not produced good results.
The internet has made it a slightly less fraught process to find an individual renter and the place that Maggie rented in Ciudad Rodrigo came that way. Even then it takes ages to sift through the various websites usually to find that nobody answers your email or phone call except for the estate agents.
The estate agent method is the most straightforward but also the most costly. The standard charging process…

La vuelta al curro

Certain Spanish soft news stories do the rounds each year. Spanish summer ends on 1 September and as people return to work the news always includes little filler pieces about how difficult it is to go back. In a couple of weeks time the story will be the cost of text books as the youngsters return to school. Back to school is la vuelta al cole, la vuelta al curro is what I've just done, back to work.

In fact we both started work today. We intended to leave Culebrón yesterday evening so we could unpack but the cat sensed something and scarpered so we had to put it off till this morning. Horrid, up at 5.30 - long before dawn. It was bad enough for Maggie after two months off but pity me - eighteen months since I last had a proper job. The strain! - polished shoes, shirt with collar, new people to meet, new routines to learn.

I'm working at the Wall Street Institute in Cartagena and everyone was welcoming and friendly. The centre has a good positive feel to it and the teaching me…

Where am I?

When I wrote the last post on this blog - Looking for a flat - I should really have written it on the Life in Culebrón blog because that's where I am at the moment.

In fact, apart from working in Cartagena it looks as though my links with the place are about to be cut. I am in the process of signing up for a flat in La Unión and the logic of naming the blogs must mean that the active ones are the places where I have a kettle. La Unión and El Culebrón.

There is a tab at the top of the page to navigate there or this is the link