Andalucia – The Drive to Granada

This is a weird story. On the drive from Cordoba to Granada, we wanted to stop off at small towns in between. It was a great idea in theory, but in practice, was always going to be a little random.

We saw a castle/church on top of a hill that looked easy to get to, so we decided to check it out. As we pulled off the highway it started to rain. It was not raining hard but as we drove towards the castle we saw some lightning.

We decided to go up anyways, and started our hike up and up towards the castle. When we got to the top, there was a little more thunder and lightning. We decided to hang out in a turret before heading over to the church. From there James, suddenly exclaimed ‘I just saw the turret next to us get hit by lightning‘. So I am like crap. This was really stupid,why are we up here, alone, on top of hill, with an umbrella.

It still isn’t raining that hard, so we wait for 15 minutes or so then decide to run over to the church. J is holding the umbrella and I am holding his arm. When we are about half away between the two structures, there is a flash, J yells and drops the umbrella. In a flurry of rain, yelling and general chaso, we run towards the church.

I didn’t feel anything, but J’s hand that was holding the umbrella is in pain. He says it felt like someone pitching his skin really really hard and he felt a shock up his arm… His right hand is swollen. I didn’t feel anything, but definitely saw a flash. J describes the flash as a spark on/around the umbrella.

SO, it is CRAZY to say to that J was hit by lightning. Right?! But equally, what happened? It was so quick and so scary. And I feel like an idiot for insisting we head up there. I definitely insisted we head up there.

Having done some research, we found that lightning can jump. So we think maybe lightning hit the church then wasn’t diverted to the ground properly and jumped to our umbrella?

I honestly don’t know. But it was terrifying.

That night, when we got to our hotel outside Granada, we were greeted by a full rainbow. It was a day of man versus the elements. And I am still not sure how I feel about it.



The panorama photo is from J’s iphone. This photo is from my camera.




Andalucia – Cordoba

Cordoba, Spain

1 Day

Stayed at Hotel Las Casas de la Juderia

The gist of it:

We picked up our rent-a-car on Sunday and drove from Seville to Cordoba. We arrived late and went for a quick wonder and some tapas. Cordoba was very quiet on Sunday and Monday. Also, some of the sites were closed on Monday. I would recommend going at a different time of the week, if you are staying longer, but it was fine for us because we were there primarily for the Mezquita.

I learned about the Mezquita in my AP art history class. There is a lot of focus on sacred space in art history and even in that context, the Mezquita stands out. It clearly made an impression on me because I made the journey to see the real thing! It is incredible. A room designed for meditation and peace. It has the scars of changing hands -most notably the nave trust into the middle. In some ways that adds to its intrigue, like the layers of history within Hagia Sofia. But the hypostyle hall is where the power of the building remains.



Roman Temple of Cordoba


The Mezquita


Me in the Patio de los Naranjos



Inside the Mezquita – not an easy place to take photos!


Looking back on Cordoba