So I was looking at my previous posts and I came to the realization that I had completely forgotten to post about our trips to Cordoba, Cadiz, and Ronda. I have no idea how I could have forgotten at those times and unfortunately my memory is rather shoddy so this post isn’t really going to give you a lot of helpful information.
Cordoba is of course known for its beautiful mosque that has been converted to a cathedral. We took a tour of the structure and it is rather magnificent. Seeing the obviously mosque features next to the lavish Christian ornamentation was quite boggling to the mind. Unfortunately my computer recently crashed and I lost all the pictures on my hard drive, otherwise I would post some for your perusal.
Ronda is the most recent trip that we took. We went to the city’s Plaza de Toros (bullfighting ring), but not to see a fight, just to check out the architecture and bullpens and have the process explained to us. I haven’t yet gone to a bullfight, but I will go eventually as it is an extremely important activity in the Spanish culture and most especially in Andalusia, the south of Spain where the older Spanish traditions seem to be hanging on with more tenacity than in the north. From there we checked out the amazing scenery and even took a walk down to some older ruins with a magnificent view. Here’s a picture of me playing Queen of the Cliff and yes, right behind me is a sheer drop off. Yikes! ☺
Cadiz has some absolutely terrific beaches that I highly recommend visiting. They are gorgeous and wonderful for swimming or sunbathing. Truthfully I can’t remember what we went there to visit other than the beaches. I believe there was a cathedral, but then there’s always a cathedral in any Spanish city.
There is something I’ve come to learn about cathedrals; after a dozen or so of them they all begin to look the same and blend together in your mind. Truthfully I don’t think I could tell you the difference between the cathedrals in any number of cities that we have visited. Of all of them that I have seen only 3 or 4 truly stand out in my mind. Personally, I find them to be too much of a sensory overload. They have some wonderful architectural elements that are fascinating to see, but the sheer amount of ridiculous ornamentation in the form of enormous protuberances of abstract designs, gold foil (the real stuff long since have gone to pay debts), and paintings completely indistinguishable from each other overwhelm the senses so that it is not possible to truly enjoy the experience.
For myself, I would much rather be walking through a botanical gardens or something much more in tune with nature. Relaxing while writing my poetry and soaking up the atmosphere sounds like a magnificent way to spend the afternoon. And while you might say that it doesn’t provide much in the way of an introduction to Spanish culture, I would argue that observing the Spanish people themselves is a much better way of coming to understand the culture than walking through buildings. So next time you have a chance to visit a cathedral, unless it is truly one of the few great ones, I suggest you find yourself a beautiful park or garden and watch the people enjoying themselves.