Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Málaga start of week 5 of 12, July 27, 2011 Wednesday

From the eleventh (XI) century to the fifteenth (XV) century, the Moslem rulers of Málaga built this combination palace-fortress. Later, the Christians added their touch.

But first, let me rewind just a bit. I said I wasn’t going to snap pics of any churches but there is a huge one just before the Alcazaba.
And now I’m going to fast forward to the end. Just as I was leaving, I ran into this guy, El Longuí, playing fantastic flameco guitar at the entrance to the Alcazaba. For 15 eurobucks, I now have a CD to play on my player. The CD comes with the words to every song. Here’s one song you can listen to. (God Damn, that’s well done. But he could sure use a pair of PROFESSIONAL wire cutters. LOL) ¨Qué jaleo¨ (KEH hahl-EH-oh) means ¨What noise¨ or ¨What racket¨ (... would make your body dance).

The entrance to the Alcazaba Palace-Fortress.
Three Spanish Coat-of-Arms.

And a Christian sacrificial altar(?). Up close, it looks like a bishop (the head is missing) with an angel's head at his feet, and a fireplace just below that.  
Arched doorways (6, there are many more).

A Herringbone walkway.
Dang, I'm on guard duty tonight. A walkway to a guard tower post.  
 Guard towers (there are plenty more).

A River (stream) Runs Through It.

To a garden and tub (trough) below.

Things are looking up (the ceiling)
Artifacts (toys, pitchers, pots, jugs)

A courtyard in the sky.
A corner room with a view.
Does this pattern make my buttresses look big?
View of the wharf below
And that's it, folks! 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Málaga end of week 4 of 12, July 26, 2011 Tuesday

¨Concrete On Tile¨. No, it’s not a Picasso; it´s the way every worker that lays tile leaves the site. The tile is down, the job is done. A few lifetimes later, someone will tear up this tile, make a repair underneath, and install new tile over it without cleaning the concrete on the new tile. Ay. Yet, there is hope. I have seen some tile being replaced on the streets and it is clean, at least for now.

¨Chewing Gum On Tile¨. This place is actually very clean, it sometimes looks dirty because of the black blotches on the bricks and tiles in the streets and sidewalks. Let’s face it, even in the US, people can be pigs. Scraping these blotches up would be lifetime job. So if you´re going to chew gum, chew responsibly (yeah, right).

It’s time to head west, down the coast. Here’s the Málaga María Zambrano train station in Málaga capital. It is really easy to get to by bus (C1 from, and C2 back to, Alameda Principal and Calle Larios). I love the bus service here.

In the lobby, a beautiful lady came up to me, tapped me on the shoulder, and offered me a Chase credit card, and I flashed back to getting robbed in Quito, Ecuador. I'm fucked for life (mentally). I think I scared her when I jumped back, grabbed my bag, and started weaving turns. I did stop short of shouting ¨Don't rob me!¨. Isn't that sad? Spain is safe, but it could happen anywhere.

Everything at the train station is computerized. The fare to Fuengirola is 2.95€ each way, 4.50€ RT. A machine reads your ticket on the way in AND on the way out. The system probably calls the pasma (fuzz) if someone tries to jump a gate.

Once past the turnstile-like gate you can take an elevator or escalator to the underground tracks. (I took the picture after I boarded the train)
The train shows up a few minutes before the scheduled departure time, and leaves as scheduled.
A man started complaining about a pain in his chest just before getting to the airport’s train stop. (I hate surprises) Someone must have called ahead as the EMTs were on the platform waiting to take care of him when we got there. (Us old farts have got to start packing aspirins) Policemen also showed up in case this was a case of funny business (it wasn’t).

There is a little town (5th stop out of Málaga) called Los Alamos. It is beautiful. American-type houses with garages. It looks fairly new. I wish I had a car to come drive the side streets.

¨You Gotta Get This Thing¨ -- Prodigy online services. The electric train is fantastic! Quiet. Smooth. The only time you hear the wheels grating the track is when a turn is not banked (tilted). And the only time you hear a wind noise is when it goes through a tunnel. The train has a power line above it that it touches with 2 bars, and ¨shoes¨ (electrical plates) that touch the tracks (electrical ground). The motor(s) in between is so quiet that I never found out where it was on the train. 

Just about every little town along the way has a MacDonalds, a Burger King, an Eroski grocery store, a Corte Inglés and/or Carrefour retail store. Fuengirola (fooehn-hee-DOH-la) also has a KFC and a Subway.
Downtown Fuengirola. Nothing especially noteworthy, but okay.
On the west side of town, there is a castle, Castillo de Sohail (kahs-TEE-yoh DEH soh-AEEL). It was not opened to the public at this time.
On the way to/from the castle, there’s a ¨foot bridge¨ (concrete, suspension cables, metal rails, but no tile. HA now you'll have to put your gum in your hair!).
The beach here is just as clean as east of Málaga.
The chiringuito has morphed into a restaurant here. He is cooking 5 skewers, each with about 10 little fish, each stabbed sideways. 
And, I stumbled into a Public Library! It was closed for the day, just past 2:30 in the afternoon.  
Next week, maybe Granada.