This morning I went out on the patio and watched the sun rise over the roof tops again. What a great start to the day, I made sure I had shoes on this time so I was able to stay out far longer to take photos.
We made a booboo in our choice of cafe for breakfast today, we should have gone back to the one we went to yesterday but in our wisdom we decided to try another one. It was rubbish! We had scrambled egg with a tomato and a bread roll, no one could go wrong with that surely. The scrambled egg was very strange, it looked like they’d mashed up a slightly burned fried egg and plopped it on a plate with a mouldy tomato. My tomato had large black indentations on it, as if someone had squeezed it and the bruising had blacked the skin. The coffee was good though and so was the orange juice, thank goodness for small mercies. The galling thing was that it cost us 5 Euros more than yesterday’s lovely breakfast.
We walked over to meet Janet and Paul and drop our bag off in their room as we were going to be returning to the van in the evening.
Janet had kindly arranged for us to go and see the cathedral today, the best thing was that she’d read online that if you visited the smaller church nearby you could buy a combined ticket and then go straight into the cathedral without queuing! Sounds ideal.
Before we left we had a quick look at the roof terrace in their hotel, very nice, and people were having their breakfast up there. I don’t know where people had breakfast in our hotel because we were too mean to have it.
I was flabbergasted as we walked along a very narrow street a short while later to see a number of cars and a white van squeezing down the road towards us. The car in front was having a bit of a time trying not to scrape the side of his car but he eventually got through, the white van however wisely decided to take a left hand turn which was slightly wider but where, unfortunately for us, we had run to safety. We wonder whether it turned out not to be as wide as he’d hoped because he then started reversing. I’ve no idea what he did after that because my mind was suddenly focused elsewhere at that point as a car squeezed round the corner almost squashing me into the wall, judging by the huge grin I saw on his face as he brushed past me I think he may have been taking part in the local sport of ‘see how many tourists you can squash in one hour’ I think he was currently way ahead of the game.
After my narrow escape we bought our combined tickets and went into the first church for a look. It was very big with lots of ornate statues covered in gold, many of them wearing rich coloured clothing. There were beautiful stained glass windows which were painting the stone floor and walls with a wash of colours.
There was rather too much gold for my taste but it was interesting to see the workmanship that had gone into making and decorating the church and the stone work was outstanding and very pretty.
As we left the church we saw a man dressed to look like Jesus with a huge cross resting on his shoulder. We couldn’t understand what he was doing, was he one of those street performers who stands still until someone drops some money in his hat and if so what did he do then? I’ll never know the answer because at that moment a gypsy started chasing after me trying to sell me some lucky heather, I didn’t know I could move so fast!
I raced after the others and eventually caught up with them and we carried on to the cathedral.
The idea of having combined tickets to queue jump had seemed wonderful until we saw the queue of people snaking out of the gate then looked in through the railings and saw the HUGE queue of people coming out of the door. It was at that point that it occurred to us we had no idea whether we were supposed to join the queue or walk straight past them into the courtyard and up to the door. Janet drew the short straw as she’d arranged this outing and she was sent on a fact finding mission while I scuttled along behind her trying not to catch the eye of the people who were glaring at us for our audacity.
When we reached the gate we found a sign that mentioned the combined ticket queue jumping so we beckoned to Darren and Paul to follow us. We finally got to the door but the queue had spread out in the doorway so we lurked around there in the hope that someone would come and tell us where OUR queue was, luckily at that moment a couple of people barged past us and Janet took the opportunity to follow in their wake with us tagging along behind her and after receiving a lot of death stares we eventually found the turnstiles and the ticket man sent us through! How very strange and disorganised, I dread to think what it’s like in the Summer when it’s extremely busy rather than simply just busy.
The cathedral was enormous and beautiful. We saw the casket which holds the remains of Christopher Columbus, Janet heard a Northern voice say “Bloody nosey Christopher Columbus!” which made us laugh. Although the cathedral was a stunning work of art the part I liked the best was the courtyard outside which was filled with orange trees.
Our next port of call once we’d left the cathedral was a cafe for lunch, we spent quite a long time wandering the streets trying to find the street where we’d had such lovely tapas on the first evening but we had no luck with that so we went into a little cafe with the menu del dia sign outside. There were no tables free outside in the sun so we went into the cafe and found a table at the back. We ordered our food and were pleased when the waiter gestured to us to come outside where he’d laid a table and placed our meals.
The meal we had was absolutely gorgeous and we sat and ate it leisurely making the most of our last day together, without being rushed off the table as so often happens at home. We were rather surprised to see a huge insect on the floor under the table next to us, we couldn’t decide whether it was a locust or a cricket as none of us have studied entomology but we did eventually work out that just like Monty Python’s parrot it had passed on, was no more, had ceased to be, expired and gone to meet his maker. Either that or he was one of those street artists that pretend to be a statue!
We explored a bit more of the city, got lost and ended up in the busy more modern part of town, then on our way back we stumbled across the street we’d been looking for previously, it was a couple of steps further down from the square where we’d stopped and turned back, however if we’d found it originally we would have missed out on the lovely afternoon we’d just had.
We started to walk back to Paul and Janet’s hotel to collect our bag when Janet got a second wind, I’m pleased to say, because I didn’t want to say goodbye so soon, and she suggested we explore the local area around the hotel, however we got lost again and ended up in a road full of bars. We were lucky to find a bar which had a free table under an orange tree (dodgy) and we sat with a drink and tapas.
It was a very nice evening but all good things have to come to an end and we were all very tired so we went back to their hotel and collected our bag, said our final sad farewells then trundled our noisy bag all the way back to the van to the accompaniment of me whinging about how my feet hurt, my legs hurt, in fact how EVERYTHING hurt. Lucky old Darren!