Fall 2017 Mediterranean Chapter Meeting in Altafulla & Tarragona

Outdoors, overlooking the ancient Roman town of Tarraco (present-day Tarragona). From left to right (standing): Eva Rodríguez Marín (wife of Juan López), Juan López Torres (TCC), Juan Pons (TCC), Nicola Coratella (TCC), Emili Xaus (TCC), Martin Garrido (TCC Chapter Coordinator), Joaquin Ruiz Arbuelo (our guide), Joao Peixoto (TCC) and Luis Felipe Gaspar (TCC). Kneeling: Jacobo Vilella (TCC) and Francesc Borrull (TCC).

The Mediterranean TCC Chapter organized a two-day meeting for its present members and potential new ones on Nov. 25-26. The first day’s program took place at the Chapter headquarters, a medieval building in Altafulla with an ancient communal bread oven and a private museum of illustrated medieval books. Owner and host: Martin Garrido, the Chapter Coordinator. After a reception which included a tour of the museum, Oscar Cadiach i Puig presented his new book on how he climbed all 14 mountain peaks over 8000 meters. Francesc Borrull and Emili Xaus gave a presentation on their recent train trip from St. Petersburg to North Korea. Juan Pons talked about his recent trip to Guyana. Joao Paulo Peixoto and Luis Felipe Gaspar, our new members from Portugal, gave talks on their recent travels. This was followed by a wine tasting of excellent local wines (Priorat, Conca de Barberá, Montsant, Falset, Terra Alta, etc.), and after that a dinner prepared by our brilliant chef, Javier. From then on, travel tales were exchanged all around the table, and vivid cultural and historical discussions began and extended deep into the night.

The second day started at 10 a.m. in nearby Tarragona, an ancient town listed by UNESCO, where Prof. Joaquin Ruiz Arbuelo, a specialist in the monuments of Roman Tarraco, gave us a learned tour of the most important sites. This was followed by tapas (small local dishes) in the old town of Tarragona. The lunch was enjoyed in a local seafood restaurant in the port of Tarragona. This part of of the port is a “parking space” rented by the Emir of Qatar for luxury yachts, so the view was interesting, while we continued our travel-related conversations. At 4 p.m. the excellent lunch was over and we could return invigorated to our homes or hotels.

Indoors at the Chapter Headquarters. From left to right (standing): Oscar Cadiach (mountaineer, traveler, writer), Juan Pons (TCC), Jacobo Vilella (TCC), Martin Garrido (TCC Chapter Coordinator), Nicola Coratella (TCC), Joaquin Sarda (traveler), Emili Xaus (TCC). Sitting/kneeling: Joao Peixoto (TCC) and Luis Felipe Gaspar (TCC).