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The Iberian Horseshoe — A Journey

Part IV. North East


Steve Porter
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The brothers have cooked chestnuts, sweet potatoes and pumpkin. It’s a delicious meal. Nino eats anything now and is strong enough to jump off the couch and demand more with that screaming voice of his. I have the day off tomorrow for All Souls Day. Mary has arrived and asks the brothers to recommend a place to visit.

“We were thinking of going north,” she says.

“There’s the Cremallera,” says Francesc.

“What’s that?”

“It’s a railway line,” says Josep. “It goes from Ribes de Freser up to Núria. There is such an incline that the train has to change tracks at Queralbs for the last part of the journey.”

“A cremallera is a clothes zip, is it not?” I ask.

“Yes,” says Josep. “That’s how the track gets its name.”

“That sounds great,” Mary says. “But maybe we should wait and take some visitors up there?”

“Where else could we go near the French border?”

“Puigcerdà is nice,” Francesc says as he goes to serve some small nutty cakes called ‘panellets.’

“Is it in France?” Mary asks.

“No, it is the last town on this side. The train goes over the border to La Tour de Carol but Puigcerdà is better.”

“Pooch-ser-DA,” says Josep as he captures three of my pieces on the chessboard.

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Copyright ©Steve Porter, 2004
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Date of publicationJune 2007
Collection RSSGlobal Fiction
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