|Paul wandering about on Market Day in Galdar|
“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.”
|Our lovely new friend Jill from Dover who is about to tackle a calzone!|
Once we boarded the bus, our destination initially was the city of Galdar. It is best known for the archeological find of the Cueva Pintada (painted caves.) The pre-Hispanic history of the Canaries is not well known, but they do know there were natives here. Human genome project has shown them to be Berber (barbarians, per the Romans) of North Africa. No one knows exactly how they arrived but there were multiple settlements on Gran Canaria associated with organized cities and crops of wheat, beans and bananas. The Cueva Pintada is a part of a settelment discovered beneath the modern city of Galdar.
|The ongoing excavation under the modern city of Galdar. This area was the city center near modern shops and residences.|
The pre-Hispanic Berber community was cooperating to grow crops at the arrival of the Spanish. Apparently a Frenchman landed first in the 1500s but Spain tried to take advantage of the islands resources.
|A reconstructed round stone home|
|Proposed internal dwelling design.|
There are some native mixed individuals still on the islands. The guide told us that on Gran Canaria, less than 10% of people have native heritage, but on the smaller island of Fuereventura, up to 40% of the residents can still claim the blood of the Guanache heritage.
The museum was extremely well done and modern. Additionally, they have two movies which can be presented in a variety of languages which explain the site, its founding and the lives of the ancient people who inhabited the island from about the 5th century AD until 1500.
We absolutely loved the museum, and the history. After living in a tiny tomato growing village for a week, it seemed daunting to be in a city of 25,000 people!
We then visited the cathedral briefly, the Iglesia de Santiago de Caballeros. We love the look of the simpler, less ornate churches we have seen here. They are reminiscent of many on the St James Way.
|Per usual, the cathedral is located on the town square. Fortunately. also it is a pedestrian area.|
|The altar. Again, prayers were offered for the sale of a certain home in Knoxville. Yep, you know who you are! We did not mention the wine tunnel you plan to build in your new neighborhood while supplicating for your home sale :)|
One thing we see a version of here that is gaining popularity in the US, but is a tradition here is market day. The local farmers and butchers and fisherman's place here was small but colorful.
|Pulpo. Just boil it, pour olive oil on it and sprinkle with paprika!|
|Prickly pear cactus fruit. They make jellies and juice from these.|
|A lovely vegetable stand.|
|The Canaries embracing an American tradition I am not particularly proud of...|
|The bed. Very comfy. Makes for a great nap.|
|The view outside our window onto Parque Santa Catalina. They were giving a native dance demonstration when we arrived.|
|Sara, from Wales is quite pleased with a vegetarian pizza.|
From there, what else could we do but go up the roof of the hotel. admire the view and have a gin and tonic????
From here we made our way to evening repast at a lovely very tiny restaurant of 8 tables called Don Quixote. The shtick here is that you cook your own meat on a hot stone. It was so much fun and really delicious. I must send out kudos to the waiters who were massively attentive and minimally obtrusive. Bravo!
|Nighttime view of the Park and downtown La Palma|
|A happy gin and tonic recipient.|
|Gin and tonic on a roof. What's not to love?|
|Pimientos de Padron...roasted peppers. Very simple.Simply delicious.|
|Internal view of Don Quixote restaurant. 8 tables for but massively good taste.|
|Meat cooked on a stone. SMOKIN!|
Overall, this was a very pleasurable day with a mix of history and unfortunately a little sadness. It's always a bit heartbreaking to meet someone, really appreciate them and then realize, you most likely will never see them again. It's why we live in the now...appreciating them for whatever time we are given. We are grateful to have met them and shared the experience of travel. Samuel Clemens spoke the truth and these folks helped us realize it:
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”
― Mark Twain,
― Mark Twain,
Paul's Ponderings: We moved on today to Las Palmas and unfortunately left our lovely hiking friends to move onward. Overall, a slow day, with a stop in Galdar and then a lunch in Las Palmas, followed by a nap and then a leisurely dinner. Not too sloppy as we say at home.
A great time here to date....we look forward to the following week, which will start with a slow day!