Towering views near the río Guadalquivir (say that three times fast)
The two of us met in Spain—León, 2007, to be exact. We were thrown into the same language school class, and Cindy, who had a few months over those of us from UCA, introduced us to everyone from the animated Irish to the gentle Japanese. Over the next six months we chatted during class breaks, went photo-adventuring, and even tried a French-English intercambio. We soon switched back to Spanish, later marveling at the fact that we could become friends in a language that was native to neither of us.
When I discovered that I was officially coming to Spain in the fall of 2010, I immediately sent a message to Cindy, who was then living in Córdoba. The “Me voy a España” was followed by exactly one hundred exclamation marks. I was already envisioning us meeting up in Madrid or Andalucía or even returning to León. Her response took me off guard—she was saying hasta la vista to Spain for a year in order to study abroad in her own country. Oh the irony!
While we did hang out in April over Semana Santa, I was still looking forward to visiting her as she finished up her final year of school in southern Spain. With free time on my hands before I started work in October, this visit took place last week. Seeing the sites was on our to-do list, but so was catching-up. I spent many hours helping Cindy and her boyfriend, Antonio, settle into their apartment, which was so new that they had only called it home for 24-hours when my bus pulled in. We shared summer stories, ate lunch, and then went site-seeing—in that order.
School started up again for Cindy and company this Monday, so the visit provided all of us with an excuse to get out and savor our last bit of summer. Here is a taste of what we saw:
Touring the Universidad de Córdoba
It goes by a different name, but this is a plaza and it’s mayor
Exiting the main square and tossing away the city map
A cultural space / photography exhibit just off of Plaza del Potro
Rummaging through what remains of Madinat al-Zahra
Dipping into the local salmorejo
Snapping an obligatory photo on Calle de las Flores
Entering the Mezquita on a Monday morning
Out of all of the things we did, perhaps my favorite memory is of Cindy, Antonio, and I attempting to haul 150 Euro’s-worth of groceries up to their seventh-story apartment. We soon realized that the groceries plus the three of us were not going to fit in the tiny elevator. Did I mention we were also in an extreme hurry? It was a cartoon-worthy moment that would have made a great picture…if only I could have moved my arms to get to my camera!