Sunday, 9 November 2014

Right Under Our Noses

On our final day, we look closer to home, examining the origins of the Parador Hotel in which we have spent the past three nights. Every nook and cranny is stuffed with reminders of its time as a 'convent' although, as it housed Franciscan monks, we are more inclined to think of it as a monastery. 

But looking instead at the architecture, we see the origins of a palace built by the Moors, with an enclosed balcony looking down onto the gardens and the ruined baths; exquisitely delicate, honeycombed mouldings over a tiny entrance hall; and a formal gardens with trees that have survived for  hundreds of years. 

Our sojourn through the Arab world is disrupted, as once before, by the Catholic monarchs. We discover that we have been staying just metres from the original resting place of Isabella and Ferdinand, before they were removed, by a grandson who thought he knew better, to the Royal Chapel in the cathedral.

Our travels are now at an end. We leave you to enjoy the remains of the Moorish bath-house as we head back to the bus to Malaga, the plane to Heathrow, and the train to Devon. Thank you for joining me on this week of travels with my Mother-in-Law's son in Spain. I will see you again on my next trip. In the meantime, normal (weekly) service will resume from tomorrow.

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