Left Portugal and drove on a secondary highway back to Spain. Green everywhere cork and olive trees with Ferdinand grazing peacefully. Didn’t manage get the pigs rooting for truffles.
Drove into Seville and found the hotel. Almost always an adventure in itself. Checked and caught the bus downtown. Notice the hat. The sun was out and warm. No lime green highway work crew jacket.
Today is Easter Eve in Seville. It is somewhere between Superbowl and Christmas. Hundreds of thousands crowd the streets. Mixed in are two mountain dwellers from California. You couldn’t miss us. We were the ones not wearing our Sunday best or wearing a cone on our head. The thousands of cone people are penitents who are anonymous to all except their parents and grandparents who are taking almost as many pictures as Peggy. The processions are the same as in Salamanca except that each parish has their own float carried by the good men of the congregation. The dozens of floats head for the cathedral. Traffic is a mess. Glad to on foot. Great excitement and spectacle.
Notice the purple cone gang, actually they are a parish brotherhood, standing under the soccer team shirts. Could not help noticing.
On the Alcazar. As the Moorish caliphs needed a place from which to rule, they built this palace. It was theirs until pushed out during the Christian Reconquista in 1248. The Christian kings and queens continued to add to the palace for the next 600 or so years. Fortunately they left quite a bit of the Arabic script praising Allah and his Prophet. Christian artisans just added their own theological views. Given the intolerance of the times, it is quite amazing.
The place is a knockout. Peggy took a couple hundred pictures. This blog will not be that long. I particularly enjoyed the reception room where Isabella debriefed Columbus. The Admiral of the Ocean Seas, as was his formal title, has his family crest opposite the painting of him, Isabella and Ferdinand.
The Columbus family crest.
Notice the Arabic script curly ques, quite exquisite. There must be hundreds or thousands of square feet of these inscriptions and geometric patterns. What is not cut into stone as made into low relief tile that is dazzling. The Christian artisans continued the tradition.
Could not go into the third largest Church in Christendom as it was full of floats and cones for the observances that would last almost all night and kick off again a 4:30 AM. Thousands of chairs surround the cathedral and more people than chairs were there to participate. Quite impressive and moving. This is more than Easter eggs and bunnies.
….and now you understand why our Forefathers decided on the separation of Church and State. Imagine, though it wouldn’t be hard, to have all those who serve in the Senate wear a cone hat. If you stay too long, my dear friends, in the Land of the Inquisition, they just might burn you to the stake.