July 26, 2010
On July 20 we visited the Archaeology museum. I was really looking forward to it, but it was disappointing because much of it was under restoration so we didn’t get to see much. We had gone early in order to have more time to see the place but we were done in a couple of hours (if it had been up to Dale we would have left after an hour, but I was taking copious notes because we had to write a report about it, and mine of course had to be written in Spanish). This report is the subject of my next post.
Most people were disappointed in the museum, but we did see at least one of the “icons” of Spanish history – the funerary vessel of the Dama de Elche, with the carving of her beautiful face and striking adornments. On one side was a hole in which were placed her ashes. There were several of these funerary vessels. A disappointment was not being able to see the reproduction of the Caves of Altamira, with its prehistoric drawings. It was closed as part of the area under restoration.
That night some of us went to a free concert at Templo de Debod at 9 pm. We had been to this temple (remains of a gift from Egypt) previously at night, when it is most beautiful all lit up, but this was the first of a series of concerts to continue for several nights (the one I wanted most to see I would miss because we would be going to Barcelona).
The first concert, which was the one we went to, was Indian gypsy music. There were a couple of male musicians and a female dancer. We got there about 10 minutes after it started and encountered a fence around the seating area. Eventually, by watching others, I figured out how to get in – the entrance was at the other end, but by that time it was half over. It was interesting but many people just sat and talked the whole time (why were they there then?? They could do this at a bar). There were also a lot of people smoking. It was not as peaceful and contemplative as I had hoped.
The next day a group of us went to Buen Retiro Park to walk around and rent rowboats on a manmade lake. Next to the lake is a large monument with fountains pouring water out of carved fishes’ mouths into the lake. This is significant because Dale rowed over there while we were taking our ride and just to tease me got very close to one of the gushing mouths. Water got into the boat and onto the seat where I was sitting. Over the course of the next 20 minutes, the water soaked the entire back of my pants! I complained but he pooh-poohed me saying it would try off in the heat before one of the other two boats was docked. Of course that wasn’t the case and even after we got home from walking all the way back, I was still soaked! We had a meeting that night at 6 pm and I was late because I had to change into dry clothes!! Oh well, the boat ride was fun and relaxing, and cool! I would like to go back to the park, however, because it is very large and there is a beautiful rose garden there I would like to see.