The day will come when I will die. So the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my allotted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze.--Richard Bode

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Madrid and Toledo

I got back to Madrid at about 11:00 a.m. after a long, tiring, crowded flight from Evansville, Indiana, to Chicago, to London, and finally to Madrid (yawn). Jessica, my daughter, arrived at the airport in Madrid about an hour later, and she and I took the Metro to our rooms at the home of Maria and Carlos.

Time to do some exploring. We went into the center of Madrid and walked around enjoying the plazas and the people.

We both love the outdoor cafes.

My motorcycle was stored at Victor Rider's house, and I needed to go get it so that I could take it to the Suzuki dealership early the next morning. I bought as new chain for it last year, but for some reason it had worn out and I had to get it replaced. This next picture is not Odysseus by the way, he would be very upset it you thought it was. Instead, it is the tricycle of a man who had both it and himself rigged up with hundreds of colored lights.

The next day, while my motorcycle was being worked on by the Suzuki shop, Jessica and I went to the palace in Madrid.\\

And to the park by the Prado museum. I thought these trees were impressive.

I like Madrid. It is a large capitol city, but it has a small city feel. I especially liked the park.

The next day, with time to kill waiting for Jessica's husband, Renaud, to arrive from Holland, Jessica and I decided to go to Toledo. I am glad that we did. It is a beautiful city. El Greco lived here, and painted his famous "View of Toledo" from across the river from the town.

I think El Greco was seeing visions when he did his famous painting.

                                  View of Toledo, 1604-14 by El Greco

A nice couple of tourists from Brazil took our picture while we were there looking across at the city.

Don Quixote is all over this part of Spain. He is the tall guy in this picture with Jessica.

I am glad we went to Toledo. It is a beautiful old city surrounded by walls to keep out the enemies.

And with a lot of old churches and homes.

They built their city streets narrow back in those days.

There is an enormous cathedral down one of those narrow streets. The place is huge.

And very pretty inside.

The following day was Saturday. Renaud was coming in on an afternoon flight from Holland and he and Jessica were going to make their way down to Granada. I will ride Odysseus down to Granada and meet them there in the evening. On the way, I stopped at a town south of Madrid to see some old, Spanish-type windmills.

These were the type of windmills Don Quixote tilted against, so of course he has to be there in memory.

There are a lot of windmills up on that windswept hill on the way south to Granada.

It was a long ride down to Grenada, and I was really happy when I got to the apartment we had rented. I was very ready for a rest and a large glass of cold water. I got there about 5:00 in the afternoon. When I checked my email I found I had one from Jessica saying there were no buses or trains from Madrid and that they finally had to rent a car. It was about 10:00 p.m. when they finally arrived. But now they are here and it is early morning. We are scurrying around and getting ready to go tour the Alhambra. The bus stop is just down the street. Time to go.