Picture of the Week

20 May 2015

Week 21: Visiting Toledo and partying in Alicante

Filed under: — Administrator @ 17:19

The week began in Toledo; my visiting French and US family were flying from Madrid to Tel Aviv Monday morning, so I decided to show them Toledo during Sunday, spend the night there, and then take them to Madrid in the morning–Toledo is less than 100 km from Madrid. It also gave me an excuse to visit this beautiful city for only the second time.

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We arrived in the neighbourhood near our hotel in Toledo and stopped for lunch at a restaurant with this view from the parking:
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Joseph is always happy when food is on the way. He is a great French patriot but is very open to food from other countries:
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Alina, uncle Zev’s wife, from Florida:
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After lunch, we checked in at the hotel and then made our way to the centre to walk around Toledo. There was only time for a few highlights, the first of which was the Santa Maria la Blanca synagogue. Built in the late 12th century, it is the oldest synagogue building in Europe. It was converted to a church after the expulsion of the Jews in the 15th century (hence the strange name) and was later used used by the military before becoming a museum, although still a property of the Catholic Church. It is an interesting place as it shows the mixture of styles that is characteristic of medieval Toledo:
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We then made our way to Toledo´s cathedral, a magnificent church which also contains many paintings by the likes of El Greco, Velazquez and Titian. Even though Joseph is 84 and Zev and Alina are in their late 70s, it was no problem for them to negotiate the streets of Toledo, even though many are like this:
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A splash of colour:
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The splendour of the cathedral is truly something to behold:
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There is a room with portraits of all archibishops of Toledo, going back to the early Middle Age:
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And great art everywhere you look. The church sure had a generous decorating budget:
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Zev and Joseph discussing something next to a painting by Titian:
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The discussion continues over a beer on Plaza Zocodover–a wonderful square with many cafés and bars, but in the dark past the site of public executions and bullfights:
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Looking down on Calle Cervantes:
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Cervantes, the author of Don Quijote:
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And finally, after all this walking, some tapas, Toledo style:
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Sunday night, the streets are quiet:
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Crossing the Tajo river on the St Martin bridge:
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Some evening sky to finish the day:
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Monday morning, before leaving, I got some views from the hotel:
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And then we got a taste of Madrid Monday morning suburban traffic, I dropped off my relatives at the airport and drove back the 440 km to Alicante to spend the afternoon at work.

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Tuesday morning I had another physio session and continued to explore visually the plants in the treatment room, and in the neighbouring treatment room:
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The rest of the week was all work and exercise. But then the weekend came and we had a party hosted by our Spanish/French friends:
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“You don’t say!…”:
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Eliot and Axunta being lovey (could also be the wine):
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Proper French cheese:
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We all attacked:
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The aftermath:
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Meanwhile, our hosts’ dog just chilled out. My Cheeta would have been scavenging all over the place to try to steal food, but this dog is more civilised:
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