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Saturday AM, Granada

Posted on Apr 2, 2006 by in 2006 Spain Morocco | 0 comments

So … I just figured out that today was April Fool’s Day … thus
far, no jokes … but another incredible day. I haven’t had internet
access, so you probably haven’t even received the last post yet …

So we slept decently on the train. I woke up at dawn and had to
watch the sun rise over the olive trees of southern Spain as the train
sped the last couple of hours through Andalucia to the town of Granada
— supposedly Spain’s most beautiful city. We “adventured” our way out
of the train station and to our hotel, the Hotel Alhambra Palace …
which simply made our jaws drop. It’s on the hill overlooking the
entire city, with an interior that is … I don’t even know how to
explain. It’s very Spanish, but with ornate Arabic details everywhere,
such as archways, molding, even the bathrooms. Our room has a balcony,
and as I type this around 9:10 pm the last remaining light of the sun
is disappearing and the lights are going on over the city. (I got some
amazing twilight pics.)

But after we found the hotel, we were very worried. The main site
here is the Alhambra (which is -right- around the corner from the
hotel), and we didn’t have tickets. And the tour was sold out. And the
lady said -IF- there are tickets, we’d have to wait in line for several
hours to get them. But she took pity on us, and somehow made us a
reservation to get in. We walked amongst the gardens and the 15th
century military fortress until our “reserved” time to get into the
Sultan’s Palace. (The Alhambra was the home to the Muslim rulers of
Spain prior to the Christians retaking it … so the Alhambra had
several Sultans, as well as Charles V as it’s “owners.”)

Once again, words can’t do justice to the insane amount of detail
work that went into this palace. There’s no way to capture it on film,
either, as these -enormous- rooms are covered with the most ornate
details… and you can only photograph one or the other … really the
only way to see it is life-size. Anyway, room after room, courtyard
after courtyard, and garden after garden kept us wow’d for about 4
hours…. at which point we all hurt. Mark O headed back for a long(er)
nap, and Mark M and I went down the windy, rocky, old street to grab
lunch. (You know, ’cause everyone here has lunch at 4 p.m.)

Okay … more later … need to get ready for our 10 pm dinner now.

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