I usually enjoy infusing my blog with videos, but I have been unable to find the one I am looking for on YouTube. Stinking copyright laws. As a result, I plan on posting a bunch of videos that only barely relate to the things I am talking about. But here’s the thing–I need you to remember a part from one of the best movies of all time, though. Remember in Enchanted
when Jodi Benson’s character
is trying to get an airplane
ticket for Giselle and she says something about not being able to find the place she’s looking for–a place called Andalusia? Well, it turns out such a place exists! And it turns out, it’s in Southern Spain!
We started our little adventure by going to the place (whose name I can’t seem to recall) where Don Quixote fought his legendary windmills
. Eli ceremoniously read the section from his copy of Don Quixote de la Mancha, we took random pictures, and ran away. Much like Don Quixote did. (The running away part, that is)
Next stop: Cordoba, home of the famous Islamic Mosque. But first I had to cross one of the oldest surviving Roman bridges in the world.
Anyone who’s anyone (or who has taken Humanities 201 at BYU) has studied these amazing arches. That happen to look like candy canes.
What most people don’t know, however, is that after the Christians took over the city, they converted the mosque into a cathedral. And it is AMAZING.
The detail in the ceiling was incredible!
I thought this photo portrays the cool mix of Christian and Islamic cultures we saw all over Andalucía.
We had a couple hours of free time after the tour, so we ran down the street to the carnival they were having and rode the ferris wheel
, of course. Best 2 euros I ever spent (It came out of my ice cream budget)
After Cordoba, we headed off to Sevilla, where I willingly ate seafood
for the first time in my life! I wasn’t completely sold on the idea of eating squid, but after drenching it in lemon juice and ignoring the…squishiness
of it…**shudder**…I found that eating things that come from the ocean are actually edible. Good thing to know if I’m ever stranded on an island
The next day, we toured some sights in Sevilla. These were cool because they were all built by Arabs back in the day, so they had a cool Arabian feel to them.
And then we toured the Cathedral of Sevilla. Of course. Because if there is a cathedral, we are going to tour it. Of course. This one was fun to see, though, because it was Spain’s first completely gothic cathedral
. Well, that, and there was a tower
you could climb to see the entire city. Which was beautiful.
Oh, did I forget to mention that a certain Christopher Columbus
is buried there, too? That was cool, I guess.
After our little tour
, Rachel and I escaped to a cute little romantic park where we rented a cute little tandem bike type thing and acted all classy and European
while driving around this beautiful park.
We ended up going to the same park the next day, because apparently the building we had been driving past all afternoon was used in the second episode of Star Wars
! Yes, it was a terrible movie
, but I was totally where they filmed a whole 30 seconds! If you’ve been ignoring my obnoxious video clips up to now, be sure to check out this one.
Our final destination was Granada, where we visited the world famous Alhambra.
This beautiful city is the last place the Muslims had control of before they totally got kicked out of Spain. Here’s a good little piece of history for you: When the city fell to the Christians, the leader of the Muslims sat looking over the beautiful city he had just lost and started crying
. His mom came up to him and told him to keep crying like a woman because he couldn’t defend his city like a man. Talk about tough love.
I absolutely LOVED the gardens here. Someday, when I have a rich and perfect Spanish husband
, we are going to pool our money to buy them and move them into our backyard. Or we’ll just buy the Alhambra. I’d be cool with that too.
I even found my old American Lit pal Washington Irving
in the Alhambra. He wrote a story about Alhambra using many of the old Arab legends. This plaque says that the room we were standing in was the room he wrote in–sweet! The English Nerd
inside of me made me take this picture.
That night, we went and saw some more Flamenco dancing. And it was AMAZING. I’m going to include another must-see video here, because the rhythm of the clapping and the dancing is absolutely mesmerizing.
Aubrey and I being all Flamenco-y before the show
All of the girls with the attractive Flamenco dancers/singers/guitarists after the show
Unfortunately, I woke up sick
on Saturday morning. So when we went to the famous Spanish poet Lorca’s house, I wasn’t terribly interested or excited. I did learn, however, that Lorca wasn’t just a great writer–he played the piano, drew, and acted extremely well also. A true artistic genius
. But it felt oh-so-good
to come home at last
and take a nap after our amazing trip to Andalusia. Which, it turns out, is awesome