Friday, October 20, 2017

A Few More Thoughts On Spain

Just a few more random thoughts about Spain.  Love the doors there, if we ever have a Spanish style house  again (we did in California) I'd love to have a door like one of these.

Love the Mudéjar style you see in Toledo

The badger loved the view from the balcony.  We learned that his name in Spanish is Tejon.  Now I know the meaning of the pass we use to drive through in California.  Mac bought El Tejon a small sword to carry, but he doesn't get to poke anyone with it.  He traveled over in my carryon and TSA examined that bag and pulled him out and gave him a thorough going over.  Don't know what he was doing in there to attract their attention.

As I said before we're not crazy about religious art, but we enjoyed some of the El Greco's.

The Disrobing of Christ

Last random thought for the day.  I think I saw more babies in Toledo in the week we were there than I have seen in the last 5 years anywhere.  And amazingly enough parents were playing with their children and listening to them instead of playing with their phones.

Thursday, October 19, 2017


We've visited Spain many times through the years, with our first visit being in 1968.  It has changed so much since then.  It was a rather backward country then, very rural outside of the big cities, and we frequently saw people traveling by horseback and donkey drawn wagons.  It was ruled by Franco---saw him at a bullfight in Barcelona one time-- and the Guardia Civil were everywhere.
Our first trip to Spain was to the tiny Costa Brava town of Tossa Del Mar.  There were few big tourist hotels back then and it was far less crowded.  We stayed in a small hotel La Anchora and paid $9.00 a day full pension for both of us.
It was our first time to see Barcelona, what a beautiful place, we spent hours on the Ramblas and you truly couldn't find a place to serve dinner before 10pm.
We were living in Germany and we'd go to Spain once or twice a year so we could lay on the beach and soak up the sun.
In the 1970's we got more adventurous and started visiting other parts of Spain, camping everywhere.  We saw Madrid, Granada, Seville, Cordoba and Toledo for the first time.  Learned that I couldn't wear shorts into town, actually had to go change into long pants one time.
Mac's parents are from Spain and we looked for their hometowns, Macotera (near Salamanca) for his Mother's family and Seville for his Father's.
In the late 90's we traveled with Mac's brother and his wife to Malaga where we rented a villa and explored that part of Spain.
Then 6 years ago we returned to Toledo because it is our favorite city in Spain.  I love the Great Mosque in Cordoba, the Alhambra in Granada, the Alcazar in Segovia, the historic bullring in Ronda, but it's Toledo that calls us back.  We love its twisted, hilly streets, the Jewish Quarter, the Mosques, the small churches around each corner and of course the Primate Cathedral of St. Mary of Toledo.
It had been a number of years since we'd visited it, so we thought we should see it again.

And it is truly magnificent.  They were singing a mass while we were there and and it was so beautiful.  Love the El Transparente, a hole that was cut into the roof and the design of people peering down into the Cathedral.
Even enjoyed the Grecos, though religious art is not a favorite of ours.

El Parente
Lit candles for Mac's Mom and Aunt, though they're electric candles now, guess that's safer, but I miss actually lighting the candle. .  Spent most of the morning in the Cathedral  till tours started filling the place up and we knew it was time to leave.  I can only watch so many people taking Selfies before I want to grab their sticks and whack them with it.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Getting Back to Normal

Glad to go, glad to come back, not glad to catch up on all the cleaning, but it had to be done.  Laundry done, bathrooms cleaned, rugs vacuumed, we're getting there.  Place aired out to get rid of the closed house odor.  Bless Mac for doing Miss Kitty's box.  And most of all enjoying the wonderful weather, just in the 70's with lows in the 50's, it's heaven.
Need to grocery shop, but that can wait till tomorrow.  Will make a chicken stew today and that will last for 2 days so I won't have to cook when we get back from the commissary.
Watched most of a movie last night, one we actually started on a Korean Airline flight in March.  It's Shin Godzilla, a new Godzilla movie and we're loving it.  Done with subtitles of course and it mocks the way everything in Japan has to be done in meetings, no one can make a decision.  Very funny. Why can't Hollywood make a decent Godzilla movie, oh that's right, they're too busy sexually harassing people.
Haven't enjoyed the baseball playoffs much, looks like it's going to be the Yankees and the Dodgers, 2 of the best teams money can buy----BORING.
Will post more about our trip tomorrow after I finish sorting photos.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

Back from a week in Spain, in our favorite Spanish city Toledo.  So much good food, friendly people and great sites to see.  It was warm, but dry, what a change for us.

We had an apartment near the Cathedral and took pictures from the balcony.

And we ate way too much, but that's why we go to Spain, to enjoy the food.  There were windows full of Jamon Serrano--oh if we could have brought one of those home with us--bocadillos  by the score,  plates of chorizo, pans of eggs, chips and ham, tortillas, lamb chops and steaks and oh so much more.  The first thing we did when we hit the streets was buy a medio kilo of Manchengo cheese and olives.  It was a wonderful week.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Heading to the Finish Line

The desks are in place and stuff being put back on them.  The shelf on my desk doesn't really go with it, but I need it, so we're going to stain it to match.  There's a drawer in front for the keyboard, but neither of us like it so we'll use it for other things.
When Mac got the first one done we worried that we wouldn't be able to fit both of them in, but it wasn't a problem.  They're the same height as our old ones, but they look and feel taller.
I finished Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and his son Owen and all I could say was that it was OK, I gave it 3 stars.  Good premise, all the women in the world fall asleep and the aftermath.  I know you suspend disbelief when you read books like this but I found it just too implausible.
Laundry done, bread being made, packing started, glad the latest hurricane is going to miss us, sorry for the folks who are impacted.
Had just enough thread to finish the color I was working on the cross-stitch, had a piece about 4 inches long left.
Too hot here, woke up to 82º and expecting highs in the upper 80's.  They're saying 2 days in the 90's this week.  Oh Autumn, where are you?

My Desk

Mac's Desk

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Almost There

My desk is done and it looks great, but Mac says no photos till his is done.  I need to start putting stuff in it and on it so it will be nice and messy just like the last one.  We moved my old desk down the stairs and into the garage which now has a couch and a desk in it.  Looks like someone has moved in there.  Mac's old desk was in such bad shape he just took it apart.
I'm sitting here now listening to the whine of his drill as he puts his drawers together..  I'm amazed at his patience.
We started watching the British version of The Office and though we like Martin Freeman and Mackenzie Crook (absolutely loved The Detectorists,  and we're thrilled that there is going to be a 3rd season and Acorn will stream it here early in 2018), we just couldn't get into it.  Oh well.
Watched a really silly Bruce Willis, John Goodman movie Once Upon A Time in Venice.
 The critics hated it, people who watched it liked it.  We're Bruce Willis fans and we enjoyed it.  Wouldn't recommend unless you're in the mood for a silly movie.

Next up is Their Finest will Gemma Atherton and Bill Nighy, we usually like his movies a lot.
I'm running out of a colored thread on my cross-stitch and I'm hoping to eke it out and finish the parts that call for it.  Mac says he'll take me shopping for thread to match, but we'd have to go to A.C. Moore in Savannah and I feel too lazy to do it.  So here's hoping.
Chik-fil-A  style sandwiches for lunch today.  A bit warm today and that's about all I'm willing to fix.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Tuesday in the Swamp

I washed clothes and hung them outside yesterday so of course it rained.  Had to finish them up in the dryer.  Today I folded the sheets or rolled them into a bundle depending on how you look at them.
Can't talk about Las Vegas, too sad, too scary.  I miss the country I grew up in.
RIP Tom Petty, I was a long time fan.  Still love or perhaps am disturbed by his Alice in Wonderland video for Don't Come Around Here No More. Tried to copy the video, but couldn't, but it's on youtube if you want to see it.
About half way through Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and his son.  I like it, but I don't love it.  It's more gory than scary.
Made Bean and Bacon Soup yesterday, so much better than the canned version and WAY less sodium.
And because we were on a bacon binge we also had BLTs for lunch.
Today we'll be good and have fish.
Some new videos coming in from Netflix, seeing as baseball season is over I'm changed our account to get more videos.  I've ordered the British version of The Office.  There was an American version, but I thought I'd try the British one instead. They always have such good character actors.
Mac has the first desk put together and has started on the second.  They're bigger than I expected, but we'll make them fit.  Watching all the work he's put into them I'm not surprised stores charge so much more for furniture that's already assembled.
Today was spent doing housework, I've promised myself not to do it again for awhile.
It has actually cooled off a bit here, temperatures only in the lower 80's.  The weather forecaster said we had 17 days in September that reached 90º or above, so we're due for a cool down.
Off to cross-stitch till I'm cross-eyed.