Proctor en Segovia: A Walk Into a Postcard

Posted by Proctor en Segovia

11/12/2017

I want to talk about about the appearance of the place: all the white buildings, the Mediterranean sea and the white sand beaches, even the red jellyfish that stung Michael. Out of all my time in Spain, Cabo de Gata is the most surreal place I have visited. I've seen pictures of settings like this online and on postcards, but I never actually thought that I would be here. Looking at the scenery in front of me was hardly a dream, yet I couldn't shake the feeling that I was in paradise.

Proctor en Segovia poses in front of the Alhambra in Granada
Proctor en Segovia Fall 2017 poses in front of the Alhambra palace complex, the last stronghold of Islamic Spain, or al-Andalus.

Proctor en Segovia explores the Albaicín neighborhood of Granada
Exploring the twisting, turning streets of Granda’s Albaicín neighborhood, the center of Moorish Granada before 1492.

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada

When we first arrived I saw that mountains surrounded us. They were barely visible in the darkness, just shadows in the background, illuminated by the moon. What really caught my eye was the white building right in front of us, the house that we would be staying in for the next three days. We ran inside to explore and the adults stayed behind to unpack. I looked in all the rooms, including all the bedrooms, and also discovered a pool in the back and a cactus in what was the girls room that we never got around to naming. The rest of the night was filled with laughter, fun and pizza until the next morning when we set out for the beach.

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada
Michael presents on flamenco music and dance in Granada’s Sacromonte neighborhood, one of the birthplaces of the art form.

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada
A neighborhood dog has a drink of water after listening in on some student presentations!

The view from our house was amazing and the drive to the beach near Agua Amarga even more so. We passed beautiful home after a beautiful home, crisp and white, in front of mountains with the far-off the blueness of the Mediterranean and sky providing a nice background. It was profoundly picturesque, but I resisted the urge to grab my phone and took in the scenery with my natural lenses instead. I did however give in to the urge at the beach and took many photos of the different shades of blue sky and ocean along with the two rocky mountains on either side, like guards, acting as some kind of barrier against the outer world. I don't know if I'll ever see anything like it again, but now I know that that place on the postcards is as real as you and me.

~ Zina Asante

Proctor en Segovia explores the Sacromonte neighborhood of Granada
Zina presents on the history of the Roma people (commonly known as Gypsies) in Granada.

Proctor en Segovia in Granada one of the capitals of flamenco
A flamenco dancer captured in bronze.

Proctor en Segovia explores the Albaicín neighborhood of Granada
Discussing immigration issues in the courtyard of Granada’s 21st century mosque built on a hillside immediately opposite the Alhambra.

Hiking a mountain with a rolled ankle is not something that comes to mind right away as a way to heal one's ankle quickly. We opened the van door and were instantly smothered by the sea breeze as well as the unmistakable smell of the saltiness of the sea. At the beginning of the hike, my confidence was building up as the path was paved and was relatively flat. However, what little confidence I mustered was immediately crushed when I reached the top and saw how steep the descent was. The trail, or what little elements of a trail that were present, had large rocks that, when mixed with rocks and pebbles of other sizes, created a nightmare for someone recovering from an ankle injury.

Proctor en Segovia visits the Alhambra
View of the Albaicín from the grounds of the Alhambra.

Proctor en Segovia visits the Alhambra
Proctor en Segovia students toured the Alhambra’s Palacios Nazaríes complex in the evening!

Proctor en Segovia visits the Alhambra

Proctor en Segovia visits the Alhambra
Admiring the arabesque carved plaster and inlaid wood inside the Alhambra.

So off I went, inching my way down and using my arms as crutches. Being handicapped, however, didn’t interfere with my experience because it actually let me enjoy the scenery of the coastal mountains. From where I was I could see a secluded beach that was hidden by high cliff sides on either side. The sky was completely clear with not a single cloud in sight, the sky contrasting with the cliffs like a blue jay in the middle of winter.

Proctor en Segovia visits the Cathedral of Granada
Visiting the Cathedral of Granada and the Capilla Real next door where the famous Reyes Católicos, Ferdinand and Isabella, lie in simple lead coffins in the crypt beneath their marble monuments.

Proctor en Segovia visits Cabo de Gata National Park
Agua Amarga, Cabo de Gata National Park, Almería province.

Proctor en Segovia visits Cabo de Gata National Park

Proctor en Segovia visits Cabo de Gata National Park
Cala de Enmedio.

I can hear the waves crashing against the sandy beaches. My nose wrinkles at the salty air that once again gets into my nose. Reaching the bottom of the trail came with a welcome reward of a beautiful beach.

~ Matt Murakami

Proctor en Segovia visits Cabo de Gata National Park

Proctor en Segovia visits Cabo de Gata National Park
Look for our final blog post of the term with end-of-term reflections at the end of this week. Hasta pronto!
~ Proctor en Segovia Fall 2017

     

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