21 December => Madrid -> Toledo
Early morning, we got up to a bright start to tour the city of Madrid. Honestly, I didn’t have any earnest anticipation regarding the whole affair as I had the previous notion tt cities will be cities. To me, they are just a congregation of people, living together, as though in a habitat as the primary science books would describe it. However, it is the culture and history of a city tt sets it apart from the rest. This makes it unique and special. Hence first, we went to visit the 2nd biggest bull fighting ring in the entire world (with the biggest being in Mexico), it was an endless parade of photoshoots with parents yelling for us to hold certain postures or be at certain positions. Though I detested it, I know they meant well.
Finally, we took a nice stroll towards the magnificent State Apartments of the Royal Palace and marvel at its lavish decorations and tapestry on the walls. I took a particular liking to the room dedicated to the Chinese as it had lovely yellow patterns on the wall, each of them resembling an intricate complex woven lace print tt worked so well throughout the spacious room. What attracted me most of all were the large number of rooms present in the entire royal palace and the amount of effort spent to decorate each and every one according to a different theme and color. Of couse only the best materials, luscious and smooth were used throughout. Every small detail from the ceiling to the floors were managed in the same style, slightly classy with a French flaire and definitely extravagant to the max. Pity photography wasn’t allowed in the palace hence the lack of photos here.
We then entered the city walls for a walking tour. First we went to view the Gothic Cathedral. Well, wat can I say? Cathedral AGAIN! But this experience was slightly enhanced due to the presence of a very experiences city guide who managed to explain the significance of most of the features in this gargantuan church.
Did I mention tt I think Catholicism is freaky? (no offence to catholics though *gulp*)
Then we took a slow stroll around the city pavements on our own. At the same time taking in the sights and sounds all around.
Toledo was a pretty strange city tt appears as though it is stuck in the past. A past of glory and faded riches. Even the inhabitants of the city are supremely old as compared to the pple who reside just outside of the city walls. Even so, the history of the city and its once glorified history as the capital of Spain remained. And its old world charm had such friendly disposition tt drew me closer to the place. In fact, I felt as if Toledo was the highlight of the entire trip.
the ceremony before the pig was served was rather interesting. this i will post a video off once i get back to spore. Other than tt, the pork was nothing spectacular. Perhaps more on the tender, fall off the bone side, but it was nothing to rave about. Dessert was a measly serving of ice-cream?!?! i was flabbergasted... in wat way did ice-cream compliment or complete a meal such as roast pork? strange...
okie.. so this photo was taken be4 lunch. a hungry woman is an angry woman! *RAWR*
Having a lot of time on our hands, we stepped into a little bakery shop along the street. As i stepped in, i was immediately taken over by a sudden surge of warmth. Not only because the shop perimeters were heated, but by the lightings and the strong aroma wafting throughout. it was pastries galore with families queuing up to purchase their sweet goods for desserts of gifts. It was instant comfort for me in a sense. well, perhaps someday i would want to set up a shop lyke this... anyway, feeling a strong urge and temptation to try. We picked out several goodies from the display to return back to the hotel to sample. and guess wat, i fell in love with one of them.. oh god,.. i MUST SO learn to re-create this dessert one day. it was more than just average. it was perfect... wahhh....
look at the lovely pastry shop display window. now, who wldn't fall in love with it?
and look at the intriguing xmas decorations installed on the buildings! sorrie for the reallie small picture. But if u take a closer peek, u'll see tt they have little santa statues climbing on the rail. Lyke thieves sneaking into homes. how cute! hehe. Pity i dun get to celebrate Christmas in Singapore. But fret not! with family ard, christmas are always fun...
well... at the very least, you've got drinking companions! haha *cheers*
Europe, i expected nothing more thn an endless touring of churches, cathedrales, palaces and more. and tt was just wat i got. it was reallie ENDLESS. the largest cathedrale, the most significant gothic church... *yawnz*... they were all beautiful i must admit, but man-made nonetheless. Hence holding less place in my heart then nature and its works would. Now half way thru the trip, i see myself caught in a web. Partially loving the stay whilst half of me yearns to go home. away from the sight-seeing, the giant structures and the never-ending bus rides. I miss my babe and bunny dearly...