Monday, November 21, 2016

A Rainy Sunday in Alcalá de Henares

Sunday, 20 November, 2016:

It was great to wake up this morning and find this good news about our beloved Dawgs on the internet . . .

This win broke a ten game Husky
losing streak to the Sun Devils

It was a much needed victory after the 26-13 loss to a red hot USC Trojans club a weekend ago.

This coming Saturday the Huskies (10-1) play our cross-state rival Washington State Cougars (8-3) in Pullman in the traditional regular season ending Apple Cup Game.

The winner of this year's Apple Cup game will be the PAC-12 North Champion and will play against the winner of the PAC-12 South, Colorado (9-2) or USC (8-3), in the PAC-12 Championship Game on December 2nd at Levis Stadium in Santa Clara, California which is the home of the 1-9 San Francisco 49ers.

Of course, the 49ers only win was their season opener against our Los Angeles Rams by a score of 28-0.


We received an invitation to join the Manzano family (Hector, Noelia and their one year old daughter Arish) in Alcalá de Henares for an evening of friends, food and football while watching the NFL's Ravens-Cowboys game on their huge screen TV in the company of Guadalajara Stings QB Tim  Hilz.

Since the game did not start until 7:00 p.m., we decided to head up early as Laurie had yet to see any of Alcalá de Henares' UNESCO World Heritage sights.

No good deed never goes
totally unpunished

Once we made the thirty minute drive from Arganda del Rey to Alcalá de Henares we needed to park the Land Rover somewhere safe.

I decided that rather than roam the narrow streets in search of a spot big enough to park our beast, I would simply find a convenient public parking lot and pay the modest fee to temporarily house it out of the rainy elements today.

The underground garage door was open, we pulled in, got our parking ticket and found a convenient spot to leave our trusted vehicle for a few hours.

We'll come back to this good deed a bit later in this blogpost.

Not many people out and
about in the early afternoon

 We were sure that the
rain was a factor in keeping
people indoors today

The Casa Natal de Cervantes

 Sancho Panza, Laurie and
Don Quixote de la Mancha
in front of the
Casa Natal de Cervantes

She's a sucker for a Knight Errant.

The house directly behind these three vagabonds is . . .

The Casa Natal de Cervantes

It is purported to be the house where Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra was born and grew up as a child.

It was Cervantes who wrote the great Spanish novel, Don Quixote, which I am still reading.

It is a fact that Cervantes was born in Alcalá de Henares in 1547, though Cervantes' exact birthplace in the city has long been debated.

In 1948, Luis Astrana Marín, author of The Heroic and Exemplary Life of Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, proclaimed that the very building behind Sancho, Laurie and the Don was indeed the home where Cervantes was born.

The City Fathers said, "Sure why not" and the legend of this structure was born.

Let's go inside . . .

 I have no idea what the function
of this centerpiece might be
(Laurie thinks they are for coals
to heat the rooms.)

 Cervantes Father was a

This is what his office would have looked like.

I'd like a haircut and a splenectomy please.

 This wall and its frescoes are
considered proof that this
house existed in Cervantes' days

 I like wavy glass

 Not a comfortable chair for
watching an NFL game tonight

You just HAVE to have a tapestry!

The Casa Natal de Cervantes'
inner courtyard complete with
a fresh water well

Jesus is BIG in these parts!

 Nice woodwork

A simple oil lamp

Nice chair to use as
your indoor toilet

Under the sheet is the bath tub

One spinning wheel . . .

. . . and another

Lux Sit

Cervantes' warm, inviting den

Pull me up some well water
por favor

Nice capital

This small Museo was well worth
the price of admission

It was free to enter.

 A random half-timbered house

Lots of arcades in the UNESCO
Heritage portion of the city

We both like walking in the rain

It reminds us of our shared days in Seattle at the University of Washington.

 Alcala de Henares' own
Catherine of Aragon, 1485 - 1536
Infanta de Castilla
Queen of England

She was infamous English King Henry VIII's first wife of six that he would eventually marry.


Good looking cross

How many Winters has
this door seen?

The Camino de Santiago

Laurie leading the way

Laurie takes another photo-op
with the boys and her new wool cap

New façade to an old building

Maybe we need dessert

Amazingly, Laurie talked me out of it.

Mixed fashion bag

Sporting my just purchased yellow scarf with my Washington purple jacket and blue Los Angeles Rams hat.

The scarf's color works for both the Osos (red and yellow) and Stings (purple and gold) too. 

Nice drain pipe!

Alcalá de Henares is 100%
against Domestic Violence

The tower overlooking
the main plaza

Laurie walking under
recently trimmed sycamores

The rain is good for
all of the flora

Cervantes Statue

We were definitely a tad wet and cold so we opted to enter a cozy little spot, Bar Cocina La Bienvenido, for a cafe (me) and a glass of wine (Laurie) or two.

Cotton ball art next to our
warm, dry table 

We had spent a nice afternoon walking the city while noshing and sipping, it was now time to head to Castle Manzano for the Ravens-Cowboys game.

All we needed to do was get the Land Rover for the five minute drive to their home.

When we got to Angel (and me a Dodger fan) Park we could not get into the closed off basement garage. There was indeed a buzzer which we pushed but there was no answer.

It was then that we noticed this rather small sign posted on the passenger side of a car when it enters . . .

The parking garage is

I have no idea how we magically got in earlier.

Although now that I think of it, I think that we did indeed follow another car in and re-tripped the sensor just before the door came down. As it turns out, the Angel Park is indeed a Public Parking Garage but also a private one for an apartment complex or two nearby.

We decided to wait in the hope that one of the apartment dwellers would come and save us.

Fifteen minutes later, our prayers were answered and we were off to Castle Manzano! 

Meat and Cheese

Hector and Noelia had decided to teach us everything they knew about Spanish jamón and how the different cuts and preparations would affect our sensitive palates.

Arish was on board with
the evening's fare

The 9-1 Cowboys beat the 5-5 Ravens 27-17. We had a great time with some really good people. Gracias!


No comments: