a disclaimer: lest you think, like a certain fan of that other school might, we did not go to the toledo in ohio. no; we went to toledo in spain.
and. i. loved. it.
i love europe because of its extensive history, because the roads and the walls and the buildings have been there for centuries, because there are stories hidden between the cobblestones and the bricks, deep inside the mortar.
and toledo has a lot of history.
it was founded by the romans (toletum), or if you consider wikipedia to be a reliable source, even centuries before the romans rose to power. after the fall of the roman empire, it was controlled by the hispanic visigoths. the moors took over at some point (you can see my history degree is serving me real well here), until the christian kings took over from them in 1085. toledo served as the capital for a unified spain under king fernando and queen isabel (the ones who sent christopher columbus to find asia, or a whole new continent, whatever the case may be) until king philip moved it to madrid in (i think) 1561. moors, jews, and christians have coexisted here for centuries, and it’s considered the jerusalem of the west.
this is the gate to the ancient city:
the original medieval walls still stand. the modern city has since spilled past those boundaries, though.
overlooking the city from across the river tajo:
la puente de san martín:
el alcázar, which used to be a palace and is now a military school:
this is the main plaza in toledo:
there was a mcdonald’s! my aunt and uncle own several mcdonald’s restaurants in michigan, so we always take pictures when we find them in other countries.
then we took a train tour around the city.
another view of the alcázar:
the gate leading out of the jewish quarter:
the cathedral in toledo is one of if not the most famous of the cathedrals in spain.
as usual, the only good pictures you can get of a cathedral are of the façade (above) and the altar (below).
& then i managed to get one pretty decent picture here, too, of where the choir would sit for mass.
we left toledo for madrid at around 530. it’s about an hour drive, so we got back around 630 and ran home quick to get the things we needed for classes that night. we spent about half the time playing trivial pursuit as a large group, and then, instead of going back to more structured sessions, we just sat around and talked. the students really enjoyed it; they were freer and more comfortable with us today, and a few even said they really just wanted to sit and practice their conversational skills in english.
we’re so thankful for your continued prayers and support while we serve here in spain. we’re exhausted but we’re pressing on: in His strength, by His mighty hand, for His matchless glory.