On Castles, Cathedrals, and Cuchinillo, Part III

2:07 pm Spain, TEFL, Uncategorized, holiday, living in spain, money

The supposed inspiration for Disney’s Magic Kingdom Castle, the Alcazar was built on quite an impressive location. Sitting atop a cliff at the highest point in town, the castle perches protectively over its kingdom like a mother grizzly watching her cubs. The surrounding hamlets and hillocks seemed to be bowing towards the Alcazar as well, and it was almost as if the very land itself was sculpted for the sole purpose of paying it homage.

When we crossed the drawbridge over the dried up mote and entered the castle gates, I couldn’t help but feeling that I was walking through a portal into another time, and it was easy for the child-soldier in me to imagine being suited in armor atop a trusty steed, my battle-bloodied blade victoriously sheathed, returning home with honor after a successful conquest in the name of the king.

I was a bit disappointed to learn however, that this castle, like so many other Spanish landmarks, had been badly burnt during one of Spain’s numerous wars, and was now just a partially rebuilt replica of what it used to be. The outside at least, along with many artifacts, had managed to have been salvaged somehow, and although the inside did contain slight twinges of modern masonry, the time-traveling effect still remained on in full force.

Our view from the castle windows looking out over the red roofs of the village below was enough to cause temporary amnesia of this fact however, and the thrones and tapestries remained well preserved, too. The antique furniture and tiny suits of armor on display served as a comical reminder of how small people used to be in those times as well, and I laughed to think that the war heroes of yesteryear only came up to my chest. If only I’d been born a few hundred years earlier – too small to make it in the world of pro sports today, I could have easily been a battle proven warrior back then – knighted by the king, sending enemies of the throne into knee-knocking fits of trembling terror, and causing unsuspecting señoritas to swoon with a smile.

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