March 8, 2007

Sherry Bodegas and Horses, Oh My!

February twenty-eighth was the last official day of my birthday month for the year. It was also Andalucia Day here in Spain. Señor CC and I took advantage of his rare day off and drove up to Jerez for another scouting run. This time we were hoping to find parking as well as our way to the Real Escuela Andaluza de Arte Ecuestra, the Palacio del Tiempo, a couple of sherry bodegas and perhaps even the Alcazar.

We managed once again to follow signs for the centro and ended up in a parking garage right beside the information office. We headed inside to get a map and some other brochures. Our first order of business was to find the Real Escuela; we needed to know how far it was to walk there from the plaza. We saw a few interesting things on the way. The first was this fountain:



Next came this monument:



Followed immediately by the famous Tio Pepe barrels. Someone was having his photo taken in front of them with his guitar. As Jerez is the area of Spain where flamenco was created, the guitar is appropriate for sure.



Doors in Spain are different than those in the U.S. in a few ways, but perhaps the most noticeable is the doorknob. The location of the doorknob in the center of the door is visually different; functionally it does nothing except give you something to grab onto. One must have a key to turn the latch and open the door; the doorknob does not move. These doorknobs were the first that I have seen here with such handy explanation as to what those knobs are for...too bad the doors graced by these are very tall and it is really impossible to even reach the knob:



Jerez is full of monuments and statues. I saw more there in the few hours we were there than in most other cities I have visited. This next one sits at the end of a large plaza with a fabulous fountain.



We made it to the Real Escuela in pretty much no time at all and were able to find the carriage museum and Sandeman Bodega as well. Luckily, most of what we would want to see is up in one area. This is the ticket booth for the Real Escuela; if you look closely you can see the dancing horse above the ticket window:



As in any Spanish town, there are many churches in Jerez. I saw three or four of these tiled plaques in the small area we walked. They are all different and detailed. Usually there are flowers or some other gift placed nearby:



I am excited to go back to Jerez and see the dancing horses as well as some of the other interesting sights in the city. Only a few more days and we shall be there!


1 comment:

wandering-woman said...

Hey,

I just stopped by to say thanks for the link. I love seeing your photos of Jerez----we're not quite to THAT Spanish summer light up here yet, so seeing your pics reminded me blue blue skies are coming, even up here...

Erin (wandering woman)