Day 9: Sevilla with a little Cordoba thrown in

There was no sleeping in this morning, we had things to do and money to save.  So we were up at 6:00, took a €5 cab to the Santa Justa train station, ate breakfast at a hectic commuter’s café in the train station (croissant, coffee… and I got a fresh-squeezed OJ from a nicer café, just to mix things up), then hopped the 7:45 train to Cordoba.  You see, if you can make it to the Mezquita in Cordoba by 10:00 then it is free. Free!  How could you not…?

Moorish doorway looking into the Cathedral

The regional train brought us to Cordoba by about 9:15 and we walked the 20 minutes to the Mezquita.  Seriously, if Cordoba didn’t have the Mezquita there would be no other reason to visit.  The Mezquita is impressive.  I mean impressive.  It is a Moorish temple that had a giant cathedral plopped into the middle of it (literally) after the Christians reclaimed the territory from the Moors.  Well worth a visit, and especially well worth a visit if it is free.  But, and get this:  we would have paid money to see it.  And how!

After the Mezquita we set out to find some Cordoban charm.  However, we never saw any evidence of it.  We tooled around the Old Town for a bit, running the gauntlet of Roma beggars, stepped foot into the Synagogue, then stopped for our mid-morning coffee at a little place with a courtyard.  It was here we plotted our next move, to wander into the main town and survey their square.

We found the square and were a bit underwhelmed.  It isn’t that it was ugly, or anything, it is just that there wasn’t anything very charming or distinctive about it, sort of like European X square.  We stopped for lunch at a place called Café Gloria, had some sub-par gazpacho, decided we’d had enough of Cordoba, and headed back on the train.

Once back in Sevilla (around 15:00), I had a hankering for churros con chocolate (after all, had to make sure they were good everywhere), so we sat in a café amid Spaniards having their serious lunchtime meal and snacked on our churros.  Next we were off to the internet café for a bit then back to our room to relax.

For dinner this evening, we resolved to eat on an impossibly cute square at an impossibly cute restaurant that served croquettes and other assorted tasty tapas, all accompanied with sangria.  What we wound up at was a noisy, busy square filled with noisy, busy locals all out for a Friday night appetizer before dinner, at a restaurant that served so-so croquettes and other assorted tapas and no sangria.  Well, we were close.  At least we ate.

Then we decided to treat ourselves to an ice cream, and we took the ice cream to the plaza by the cathedral and hung out to dissect where we go wrong when it comes to dinner.  We concluded nothing, enjoyed the ice cream, then headed to bed.

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