page 6 -- Seville to Arcos de la Frontera

Seville would have been a nice place to linger and explore, but greater things awaited us.

Wouldn't it be nice to have a small plaza like this in your neighborhood?

We got up the next morning and hiked through the gardens of the Alcázar to the bus station.

Buses and bus stations in Spain are clean, comfortable, easy to use, fast, and cheap.

We took a 2 hour bus ride through the heart of Andalucía to Arcos de la Frontera.

The white hill towns of this region frequently have an old Moorish or Christian castle on top of their hill, left over from the centuries of warfare between the two peoples that occurred here.

This is a picture of the town of Espera, "Hope," taken through the back window of the bus.

Once in Arcos we walked up towards El Castillo de los Duques, its hilltop castle.

"It's the castle of the what?" asked Nadia, hiding a smile.

"Duques. El Castillo de los Duques, the Dukes' Castle," I replied, looking at our map.

"Dookies? Get outta here, Lee," said Nadia, punching me.

The hill was steep. I said nothing, panting and looking at the climb before us.

Nadia shook her head and looked at me disapprovingly. "The castle of the dookies?" she asked.

"Riiiight," I said, turning another corner and finding the street rising at an ever-increasing angle. We're humping our packs up these hills in the Spanish sun, and Nadia wanted to have fun?

I repeated the word in Spanish, making sure to get the pronunciation right. "DOO-case."

On we went, up the flowery lanes...

... past open doorways with inviting inner courtyards.

I labored up the hill, while Nadia giggled and held her nose. "DOOKIES! We're going to the castle of the DOOKIES," she sang as she skipped ahead of me.

We arrived at the mirador on top of the town, with views of the church...

... and the surrounding countryside.

We bought bread, cheese, tomato, onion, and chocolate at small courtyard market and had a picnic on the sunny mirador.



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