On Castles, Cathedrals, and Cuchinillo, Part IVApril 9, 2009 2:08 pm Spain, TEFL, Uncategorized, holiday, living in spain, money
Another highlight of the castle was its store of rescued armory artifacts. Two rooms at its far end served to display various full bodied suits of armor, stainless steel swords and arrows, iron cast corroding cannon carcasses, and glass box displays of expertly crafted cross bows and antique archery equipment. As fascinated as all these weapons of war were to examine, it was eerie to think how many lives had been taken at the expense of their sharpened tips, and difficult to imagine trying to fight hand to hand not only while encaged in a constricting shell of clamorous, clanking metal, but to simply see anything at all through the narrow slits of the knights’ enormously globular helmets. The shadows of late afternoon were starting to stretch longer though, and so it was with a determinedly devout demonstration of self restraint that I begrudgingly obeyed the “NO TOCAR” signs pasted all over creation and turned to the exit – head down, hands in pockets, and ready for the last leg of our castle tour.
For the perfect punctuation to this picturesque day, we wound our way up the 152 spiraling stairs to the tower’s top terrace where we could see for miles on every side – a truly panoramic piece of optical opulence. To the south and west, a quiet village nestled itself cozily into the hills like a blanketed infant in sound slumber; to the north and east, a sleepy river snaked through thickets of trees, past the walls of Segovia’s town limits, and upwards towards the mountains; and everywhere we turned the landscape was awash in the glowing warmth of golden sunshine. While we stood taking it all in and regretting the advancing short hand of the ever-impatient clock, a light breeze carrying with it the springtime scent of budding blossoms played winsomely at our flapping shirt sleeves as we wistfully watched the shadows of a sinking Spanish sun deepen like puddles of twilight in a summer squall, splashing navy blue tiger stripes across the countryside and bringing with them the close of another beautiful Iberian afternoon.
All in all it was a perfect day. I was sad to say goodbye to Segovia, my new favorite neighbor, but thanks to Spain’s increasingly efficient system of high speed railways, it’s little less than a stone’s throw away. And although I won’t be making monthly visits, I can at least take comfort in knowing that whether I’m homesick for green grass and fresh air or just hungry for some roasted piglet, Segovia, like its aqueduct has proven, isn’t going anywhere any time soon.