Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Camino Mozárabe Images and Moments 2011

The name was exotic, and southern Spain was unknown and beckoning. We didn't quite throw a dart at a map, but similar. It was a pilgrimage route in Europe, the length was right, we had the time. If we could deal with the heat we could do it, so number one priority was to start early enough in the year. I documented the planning in an earlier blog entry: Camino Mozárabe - Planning - a work in progress   At first we picked April 17 as a start date in Granada. Then I reread James Michener's Iberia - Easter is a huge deal in Granada, no chance of finding reasonable accommodations at this late date, plus it would be crazy to be there at Easter and then leave without experiencing the whole Easter week. So, we moved the date to April 27th. Got to Málaga saw a few sights, slept, and caught the bus to Granada. Pouring rain on the bus, but just showers by the time we arrived around noon. Into the hotel to drop our stuff and then out. Found where the Camino Mozárabe route started. (Marked by a plaque). Walked it to the point closest to our hotel, to avoid having to search for it on departure day. The graffiti in Granada was up to the standards of Spain. I did a separate youtube just on the colors of Andalucia




The big deal in Granada is the Alhambra, palaces and grounds dating from Moorish times but used by the Catholic monarchs as well. However, don't neglect the little things, like manhole covers.

We missed Easter, but hadn't realized that the saints have to go home. The various saints are cared for by associations confraternities? and brought to church for special occasions. The process of getting there is elaborate, with a procession, a band, various groups of people. What we didn't realize is that the return home for the saints is also a major event, and we managed to see several of these.

After a day plus in Granada our walk begins. Rain threatening but not happening. City suburbs are not all that exciting. You have to seek it out. In this part of Spain, abandoned industrial buildings are the thing of interest. Susan is still nursing some knee problems from a hike a few weeks ago, so we stop every couple of hours if we can find a dry enough place. We reach Pinos Puente for the night and find the next day that rain is likely. Still, the contrast of the red poppies, the green and the wet is striking.





Enroute to Moclin

olive groves are NOT boring
Alcaudete
silo de aceite - trail landmark
In Baena we saw lots of cars with trailers, no pickups
Baena's San Francisco
We didn't see pickups, but saw lots of trailers

the mosque in Cordoba
This is our end point, from here we went to Cadiz, Sevilla and Madrid