HOT HOT HOT
Trip Start Jun 01, 2010
158Trip End Mar 11, 2011
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We took off after breakfast in the hotel. It was a bigger trail driving down the hill than driving up. The roads were crazily narrow and we had to maneuver back and forth to take the sharp hairpin corners. But after a short while we reached paved and wider roads which led us out of Lisboa. We drove into Spain, past the town of Badajoz and from there down south to Cordoba. We saw the outside temperature increasing every mile we drove down. At one point it reached 42 degrees Celsius. On our way we stopped at a little service area, initially for a sanitary stop. But it turned out that they had a cheap buffet lunch which looked quite OK. We ended up having ourselves some chicken and paella. The paella at this road side restaurant was better than the one served in Salamanca a few days earlier. After lunch we continued onwards.
Around the town of Zafra we parted from the highway and took the N road further down south. There is not much in these parts of Spain. Just small villages, fields of wheat or grain. And here and there a vineyard or a patch of olive trees. The closer we got to Cordoba the more interesting the landscapes became. We saw some little castles and the white washed Andalusian villages in the hilly countryside.
We arrived in Cordoba late in the afternoon. Our hotel ('AC Hotel') is a strange looking building. It reminds me of the offices of Logic in Bermuda. In front of the building there is a rusty and ugly piece of ironwork, perforated with circles. This piece of scrap metal prevents the sun from hitting the top to bottom windows, which is a good thing as the sun can be pretty hot here. But it does make it a very ugly Hotel (from the outside). The inside is fine though, modern and functional. The only downside is that they don't offer free Internet in the rooms, only in the public areas. And the business area is no more than a desk, no fax or printer, nothing but a desk.
We settled in and went out to see the town of Cordoba. This is basically Juderia, the old Jewish neighborhood, a maze of small streets and alleyways. The entrance to this area was conveniently located just across the street from our hotel. It is marked by a historic gate. It was HOT, very hot. The temperatures were easily over 40 degrees Celsius. As we made our way through the small alleyways an occasional car made his way through the narrow streets. Unbelievable that it is still accessible by car, the roads are too narrow to fit a car and a pedestrian at the same time, so you have to seek shelter in a portal. We stumbled on the walls of the Mezquita, the main 'attraction' of Cordoba. Its an old Muslim mosque that is converted into a cathedral. It is a colorful blend of Moorish and Christian architecture. Unfortunately the doors were already closed, so we will have to 'revisit' this site tomorrow. As it was around eight o clock we decided to have a small bite. We ended having dinner standing in a famous tapas bar next to the Mezquita. It was supposed to be a pre-dinner snack, but we ordered way too much (of course).., :) so the snack became dinner.
After our tapas extravaganza we strolled on for a bit over the old roman bridge in the hope to catch a breeze of fresh air. No such luck, there was no wind, and even the evening temperature was pressing. We decided to make our way back to the AC, which we figured stands for 'Air-conditioning'. After freshening up and enjoying a nice cold drink from the mini bar we
called it a night. Tomorrow we will explore Cordoba some more. I hope it
is not as hot..