I was heartbroken to leave Barcelona. And then I arrived in Granada. Everything about Granada is charming. The alleyways and sidewalks are tile, terrazzo or cobblestone and cleaner than your kitchen floor. There are ornate benches everywhere... and beautiful hanging lamps.
My hostel courtyard view.
They, too, have this Christopher Columbus fascination thing going on. I guess discovering a new world is pretty big stuff after all. This is Chris presenting his plans to Queen Isabella.
The architectural styles vary. Many of the alleyway bazaars carried Moroccan items, leather bags, Turkish trousers, embroidered tapestries, mosaic stained glass lighting, very colorful and enticing. There were many Moroccan restaurants as well. But I stuck to Grenada tapas bars, holding that culinary experience off for Morocco.
It is good to travel light and know that anything you buy you have to carry on you back. I did buy three CDs of music I had never heard the likes of, perfomed by musicians in the plazas. There are many plazas, or squares, sometimes around a fountain or monument or just shrubbery with exquisite flowers or a crazy huge medieval church, and often with benches and cafe tables, or at least steps where you can rest against the cool marble and listen to live music. The first CD I bought was music played on an instrument I had never seen. It was percussion: two metal round kind of cone-shaped ordeals that when hit with a soft mallet and echoing in the huge stone plaza enclosed by cathedrals, was absolutely other-wordly.
My last day I spent with a bottle of wine, olives and salmon pate in a park dedicated to Federico Garcia Lorca, one of my all-time heroes. The park was all roses and romantically redolent.
Granada is magical. Margaret and I discussed the difficulty in realizing that our lives are finite and we might not make it back to a place we love. This first hit me when David moved to Vienna and I counted the number of times I would likely see him again, given an average life expectancy. I cried and cried. Knowing that you will not get to hang out with someone you care so deeply about many times more is a pretty awful realization. Life is magical and it is painful. Ah, Flamenco. Ah, Granada.