Sunday, April 08, 2007

Spain: Madrid, Segovia, Avila...

The flight was largely uneventful, though for some reason Mai Li kept setting off the security scanners, despite dumping all her things into the tray provided. I think she was frisked three times. We've not been too jetlagged after having arrived. We researched the seating plans on the plane and booked good seats on both legs, so I actually managed eight hours sleep. Mai Li only napped fitfully, though, so after 24 hours travel time and checking into our 4-star hotel indulgence, and luxuriating in the shower, Mai Li had a little siesta. We then ate at the Museo del Jamon, the "Museum of Ham," a smoky bar festooned with legs of ham serving beer and tapas. Madrid was a bit overcast and rainy, and at one point we were traipsing through the rain between hotels with our backpacks and ponchos.

The following day we caught a bus tour from Madrid to Segovia and Avila. Segovia has three main tourism draws: the alcazar, a 19th-century reconstruction of the original 13th-century castle which burned down; the Gothic cathedral; and, the reason I wanted to go, the Roman aqueduct, still in use, spanning nearly a kilometre, rising nearly 30 metres and all built without a drop of mortar. Spectacular.



Avila is surrounded by 12th-century walls, the best preserved in Spain. The guide book says as a top priority one should walk atop the parts of the walls open to the public, but unfortunately it is the nature of tours that you have to follow the leader, and we stayed at ground level.


Lunch was included in Segovia -- bean soup and roast suckling pig -- but it was nothing to write about except that it gave me food poisoning, the details of which I will spare you. Apart from being easier on my stomach, we've been eating fruit, bread and yoghourt from the markets because it's cheaper and eating restaurant food and tapas is too rich to eat all the time.

I am writing this from Seville, a truly beautiful city, but am I supposed to waste all my time on this computer? I'll update you from the next stop....

2 comments:

Shelah said...

Legs of ham serve beer and tapas? Cool! :) More details on the food poisoning, please. Was it anything like Kaslo?

kukuleow said...

Wah! Nice one. Hope that your tummy doesn't have to go through another upsetting event. Well, I'd be following your blog throughout your trip in Spain...Take care ! Gillian