Pictures

These are some pictures from my last trip to Spain. Click on the picture to see an enlarged view.
This is in Salamanca. I think round buildings are so cool.  Actually the building is a large square one, with a huge internal courtyard, and this round part is one corner. It is part of the University of Salamanca, one of the oldest universities in the world, and was once the college of medicine,  though now it is known as the College of the Irish because so many Irish students came to study here. The first stone was laid in 1528.



Stone images from a church on a mountain. The image below shows the shields for the provinces of Leon and Castilla.




The back of a chair in a TINY little restaurant. The Spanish pay a lot of attention to making things look nice.

Sometimes streets this narrow are not one way--so drivers honk the horn and hope no one is coming from the other direction!


I used to have so much trouble navigating in Spain until I realized that all the street signs are on the buildings. This sign, for example, is located about 12 feet from the ground on the building wall. It commemorates a famous citizen from the pueblo.

These are rather old and fading insignias on a stone wall--perhaps 600-700 years old.
I love the intricate carvings on these solid wooden front doors.

A closer look at the family shield.


A view of the mountains in fall. In my novel I talk a lot about the mountains.

I love the hanging geraniums. I saw a lot more of these when I lived in Germany. They are such friendly flowers!

All houses are made of stone/cement in Spain. None of the match stick construction we use in the U.S. And if they don't have the Spanish ceramic tiles on their roofs, they have slate stone shingles. Both types of roofing are very heavy, but the stone walls can hold them. Of course, it takes several years to build a house. But then, they last for hundreds of years.

This is a tiny dried meats store.

This little village, and it's the only one I know that does this, buys a pig every January and has it tamely roam around, being fed by all the neighbors. In late December they have a lottery, and whoever wins gets a supply of fresh ham, ribs, bacon...all that good stuff. This picture was taken in November so this fellow still had a few more weeks left.

The hanging legs of cured ham surprised me when I first saw them in Spain several decades ago. Now they make my mouth water...jamon serrano is so yummy.
I took this picture and the three below it from a bus. I think this first one looks like it could be a Cezanne painting.

Notice the stork's nest on the top of the church bell tower. It's a noisy place to live but you can see stork nests on top of every tall building across the Spanish country side. I think that's so cool.

Hazelnut bushes.

These are "bodegas", which are wine cellars built into the mountain. Sometimes when you look at these hills with a ton of doors and no obvious building behind them, they look like hobbit holes.

 This one also has a stork's nest, off to the right--see it?