The ocean is as smooth as glass today and it feels like the tropics outside. Inside it’s freezing, thanks to the powerful AC system! I apologize for the long delay in posting. We went straight from Spain to Morocco and then back into classes and programs as we head south along the western coast of Africa.
I know words are inadequate to convey all we've seen in just a few short weeks, so I'm hoping I'll be able to upload enough pictures to tell the story.
Our first port was Cadiz, Spain, on the southern tip near Gibraltar. It was once the departure point for ships headed to the New World. Today it is a quiet coastal town with beautiful beaches, a dizzying maze of narrow, winding streets, and an ancient cathedral that served as our hub, thanks to the open plaza and free wi-fi!
Jerez de la Frontera is further South, so hotter and more deeply committed to the custom of Siesta! We wandered along the modern pedestrian mall, had lunch in an outdoor cafe, and then found the Alcazar - a former Moorish, then Spanish castle. The oil press in the Alcazar was one of the most amazing things I've ever seen! It was SO huge!
Seville was stunningly beautiful!
I don't have a picture of the Alcazar that does justice to the amazing tile and stucco work. I could imagine a royal family living in the castle, walking through the hallways, and escaping the heat in these courtyards situated around flowing water channels. It was like being inside a novel.
The cathedral in Seville was utterly overwhelming! I've never seen so much gilt in one place. I think I may have a better understanding of why the Protestant Reformers so eagerly removed all decoration from churches. This is a little over the top for my taste! Though I hear it's glorious at the Easter Vigil when the lights all come on and a dove flies down from the rafters in front of the golden reredos!
The next post will be about Morocco and our stay in a nomad camp on the edge of the Sahara.
Thank you to everyone who has made a donation to NetsForLife We are headed to Ghana and I am very aware of those who struggle to keep their families safe and healthy. It can all be undone by something as simple as a mosquito bite. That bite, and the potentially deadly disease of Malaria can be so easily prevented. $12 buys an insecticide treated need and provides education and awareness to communities at risk. Consider buying a net or two, or making a pledge for each nautical mile we're sailing. Go to NetsForLifeAfrica to make your donation. Put "Nets at Sea" in the business line to join our campaign!