Mijas and the Fuengirola Market
We got up early to take the bus into Fuengirola for the Wednesday market in the Recinto Ferial (Fairground). It was huge! Compared to the sardine-can style asian markets we had visited earlier in the trip, this set up was so much more relaxing.
We strolled the three long rows of stalls selling handmade clothes, dozens of varieties of spices, nuts, and beans, and the typical knock-offs (a staple at any good market). We bought an enormous head of califlower and some fresh strawberries from Malaga (we can’t go to a market and not buy produce). I also splurged (a little) on a hand-made lace-detailed shirt from Italy.
Rob eventually dragged me away from my Italian dream-wardrobe and corresponding puddle of drool, and we caught the bus to Mijas, a cute little village further up the Mountain, overlooking the whole valley (including Fuengirola).
The town was simply lovely. The white walls on all the buildings, hand-painted awnings, and beautifully painted tiles were the embodiment of the Spanish countryside I had pictured. Some random wandering led us up a flight of stairs to a second level of the village, home to one one-lane street and more shops and restaurants.
We passed many persuasive and welcoming restauranteurs urging us to eat at their establishment, but one topped the list. He had tons of dairy-less options on the menu, many pictures of the food and the view, and invited us in to personally show us the place (including the meat, desserts, and the official bragged-about view. We agreed to stay, slightly out of guilt but mostly out of desire for this perfect lunch on a beautiful day.
We ordered a garlic and olive oil pizza as a starter, with Spaghetti with Parsley, Garlic, Chili, and Olive Oil to share as the main dish (they had English menus, but I translated the more subtle details). We sipped our Fanta and enjoyed the gloriously sunny day on this five-star-view deck. Just as our food arrived (it was fantastic), a Flamenco guitar player started up inside. We basked in the alignment of planets and bathed in the olive oil. After some quality lingering, we said goodbye to our restaurant-family (I really felt like we were saying goodbye to good friends) and took the long way back to the bus station.