Trip to Spain

Armed only with some guide books, two laptops, high speed Internet access, our previous experience planning and executing our trips to the UK and to Europe and an over abundance of gumption we are started out plotting our next vacation.

Jay and Cynthia are going to Spain!

Our plan is to fly in to Madrid where we plan to see:

  • The Palacio Real
  • Parque del Buen Retiro (Park of the Pleasant Retreat)
  • Museo del Prado
  • Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Guernica by Pablo Picasso!)
  • Plaza Mayor
  • Almudena Cathedral
  • While in Madrid we have mapped out several day trips.

  • El Escorial and Valle de los Caídos (Valley of the Fallen) to verify that Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead.
  • (Holy) Toledo – Toledo Cathedral
  • Segovia – Roman aqueducts
  • Cuenca – Hanging Houses
  • From Madrid we catch the high speed train (Ave) to Seville to see the barber of as well as the Seville Cathedral and climb the Giralda Bell Tower. Well also see the Basilica De La (hey!) Macarena and the Tomb of Columbus.

    From there it’s on to Cordoba to see The Mezquita and then by bus to La Linea where we walk to Gibraltar to see:

  • The Rock Of
  • Europa Point
  • Gibraltar Barbary Macaques (the Barbary Apes)
  • Then it’s back to La Linea (by Bus), to Algeciras and from Algeciras (by train) to Granada.

    In Granada we plan to see:

  • The Alhambra
  • The Generalife Gardens
  • The Granada Cathedral and the Tomb of Ferdinand and Isabella
  • From Granada we will catch a short flight to Barcelona (The land of outrageous Gaudi architecture!) where we will see:

  • La Rambla or Les Rambles (Catalan) / Las Ramblas (Spanish)
  • Christopher Columbus Monument
  • Sagrada Familia Basilica
  • Casa Mila
  • Casa Batlló
  • Palau de la Música Catalana (Palace of Catalan Music)
  • Park Güell
  • Montjuic
  • The Magic Fountains
  • Plaça d’Espanya
  • While in Barcelona we have one day trip planned and that’s to Figueres to see the Salvador Dali Theater and Museum.

    And then it’s back to Madrid to catch a flight back home.

    All mapped out the trip looks like a crooked coat hanger.

    All in all it looks like we’ll be gone for about a month. We’ve put our vacation requests in to our bosses and once approved we’ll secure the air fair and nail down the particulars in terms of hotel reservations, rail passes and so forth.

    Disco Expressions

    The Disco Expressions show at the Continental Club on Friday was a VERY good time…

    Paul Beebe was getting his cheesy disco croon on

    Jim Henkel was really letting his hair down

    There was a huge crowd and everyone seemed to be really diggin’ it.

    Payin’ my dues

    I had a flat this morning.
    Fortunately I caught it before the tire totally deflated so I was able to call AAA to have them come out to the house and change it for me.

    I mostly keep the membership for the Cutlass, but it’s nice to have for situations like this.

    Wow, I’ve been a member for 30 years now.


    We love having feeders in the yard to attract the birds. Cynthia has even gone a step further and buys a cheap loaf of bread so that she can put some out when she gets home from work.

    We’ve got tons of sparrows, Ricky and Lucy our mated pair of Cardinals, the occasional Mockingbird, plenty of Doves, a screeching Blue Jay and the House Finches.

    We also have squirrels.

    We keep trying to find a way to keep them off the feeders but it’s no use. They have all day, every day to ponder and scrutinize the situation and formulate their plans.

    They’re a 24/7 think-tank of diabolical, food absconding EVIL with one objective…

    Our feeders!

    Damn their furry hides!

    Toad Coat

    Cynthia has made me many wonderful shirts over the last few years, but they pale in comparison to the absolute coolness of her hand-made, one of a kind, coat of many toads.

    Click here to see the back

    Cynthia collected the various frog and toad prints over many years and then pieced them together into this marvelous creation.

    It’s a real head turner!

    Gull pics from Bolivar

    I have a fond memory of reading the book “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” by Richard Bach during the early 70’s. It was a very popular and inspirational story in my youth and it came highly recommended to me by many of my friends.

    It’s one of those memories that looses detail over the years but gains in mental and emotional significance because it marks a change in mental state. I have not read it again since that first and only time, and I am rather certain it would not have anything close to the same effect on me today as it did back then so I choose not to re-read it.

    Rather, I choose to let my flawed and scattered recollection tickle my consciousness each and every time I find myself near the beach with an opportunity to feed the seagulls.

    In doing that, I reach back and make a connection with a distant but pleasant memory. And maybe, just maybe the serenity and joy I experience in that moment is the true benefit of having nurtured this fond memory for over 30 years.

    At least I hope so, because otherwise I am just giving free bread to a bunch of filthy sea pigeons.