Sábado Cordobés

5/29/10  –  23:37

Córdoba sits pretty upon the Guadalquivir river about an hour and a half east of Sevilla by bus. It’s a town which housed three religions [kind of like the rest of … everywhere in Spain]. It was the site of a native Iberian town, a Roman city, a Muslim stronghold, among other things. Its main draws are:

a) La Mezquita, which is now a Christian cathedral, but still contains all the Muslim architecture.

b) El Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos, which is attached to pretty much one of the most awesome gardens I’ve seen in Andalusia yet.

But yeah. We spent a day being tourists and I pretty much snapped photos the whole time. We went to the Mezquita first, which was pretty cool to see after having a picture of it in every art history and world history textbook I’ve ever had. I now know why they only show the arches. Because the floor is swarming with tourists. ;_; Ah well, you can’t win ’em all.

In the middle of this gigantic mosque, the room just opens up into this gigantic cathedral where they still have mass every day. It was very seamless too, the transition from Islamic to whoamg Christian. Good job, architects.

But of course, we can’t forget the third religion of Córdoba. Apparently, there were only three major synagogues in Spain, two in Toledo, and this one here in Córdoba. It was very small, unadorned, and just about the size of the apartment here in Sevilla. The only thing it had inside, really, was an apse with a menorah in it. And inscriptions in Hebrew on the door frames. Surprise surprise, the mudéjars [Muslims living under Spanish rule] made this one.

~

We went to the Alcazar next. The building itself was filled with lots of Roman mosaics excavated from within the town. Because the civilizations kept on building on top of each other, when people dug into the earth to make new buildings, they kept finding pieces of older cultures. Like an archaeological layer cake. What really struck me though, was the gardens. They’re feckin’ breathtaking. It’s basically macro-photography paradise with the amount of flowers there are there.

~

After the gardens, we had lunch, and then Stephanie and I roamed around the streets. It got scorchingly hot halfway through our wanderings and I said out loud: “All I want is a bench in the shade.” We turned the corner and there was a bench in the shade. In front of a church. And a poster with the smiling face of a female saint of some sort. Thanks! :D

But yeah. It’s starting to get really really hot. And as a side note, the rain in Spain stays mainly… not in Andalusia. It hasn’t rained once since I arrived in Sevilla.

This made for some nice walking/hiking weather on my trip to Ronda. And by nice I mean I almost died. Whoops. But that’ll be detailed in the next entry.

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