It’s only 8:40 when I write this. Early night. Got up at 8:00 and had light breakfast with our group. John and I went walking ostensibly to find an ATM, but we did a much longer walk. Went across the “new bridge.” Now, new is a relative term since this bridge was finished in 1790 and replaced a bridge over the same gorge that had collapsed earlier after an earthquake. Across the bridge is the more commercial part of Ronda. On our “old town” area where the hotel is, about less than 1,000 people live while on the other side of the bridge, about 24,000 live. And tourist season (which is still on now) brings in over 2.5 million visitors a year. But John and I were out before the hoards descended.

We found the ATM and then walked into a park that ended up having a spectacular view of the farmlands below. Really below! Then we walked past the bullring, which we knew we were seeing later and back to the hotel. To our rooms until meeting outside at 11:30.

Met Armando, our guide. We walked, he talked. First went to the church behind the hotel, Virgin of la Paz, where a wedding was about to take place and folks were dressed in their finest. Onward into the heart of the city on the other side of the bridge. Now the huge tourist groups were all over the place. And it’s busy on a Saturday normally since this is the only commercial center within a radius of 95km.

We walked down and around to a park overlook of the old bridge from the other side and got its history. From there we went to the bullring (Plaza de Toros) where we got more information about bulls, horses, bullfighting as an industry, the whole process of the bullfight from when the groups of bulls are brought in to what they do after the bulls are killed in the ring … butchered and sold in local meat markets. And we went not only into the center of the ring as we had in Seville, but also to the highest seats to take sweeping images. Played with some shooting through Kathy’s crystal ball, which she had schlepped from home.

At 3:00 we were ushered into a nearby restaurant, Restaurant Jerez, for a huge, multi-course lunch with wine that lasted until 5:00. We waddled back to the hotel. At 5:30, some of took a taxi all the way down to the bottom of the gorge to get some good angles on the old bridge. Then back to hotel. Around 7:30, we all congregated in the square we were in last night and had wine/beer an olives. It got chilly and it’s been a long week, so Bruce, Pam, and I walked back to the hotel.

Images from the day are downloaded. Might play with a few, but intend to be in bed by 11:00 instead of the normal 1:00AM. And tomorrow is my 77th birthday.

Share this post