Monday, September 27, 2010

Day 8 | Toledo and Madrid September 2

We woke up and the rain had stopped.  We were so excited, because we were worried this day could be slightly miserable due to the weather.


much better
 Before we grabbed breakfast, we went up to the hotel roof.  It had a great 360 view of Toledo.






showing off the new kicks




fun with the wide angle


We checked out of our hotel, had them hold our bags, grabbed some donuts, and were on our way!


elevator mirror shot!


our room


Our first stop was the Cathedral.  This place was amazing- but like all good things, you couldn't take pictures.  We ran into Ryan's parents, and Lindsey and Sonny here.  They had done a few of the things on our list today, yesterday, so we didn't stay with them.


The Cathedral had all the things that the great Cathedral's require- alters, organs, pictures etc.  Ryan really liked the treasury room.








After touring the church, I went to the store and bought a b&w Spanish tile for our house.  Ryan was thrilled to have the extra weight in his backpack!  We then headed over to Placa Zocodover to ride the tacky-tourist-train.  When we got to the plaza, we saw the train, but weren't quite sure where to buy the tickets. Our book didn't do a great job of explaining, and the sign by the train had a horrible map.  We were running around the few streets nearby, trying to find the ticket office.  I decided to see if I could ask a tourist already on the train, where they got their tickets.  Luckily I found a gentleman who spoke English (!) that pointed us in the right direction.


After the running around to find our tickets, I realized I had to pee, and I wasn't going to be able to make it for the hour ride.  There was a McDonald's in the plaza, and we hadn't had coffee yet, so Ryan ordered us two cafe con leches, and I used the loo.


I was also very excited to be able to get a mickey D's garbage can shot, in Spanish!




After grabbing our coffee to go, we got on the train.  We scored with great seats, the ones on the back of the train.  We thought this definitely had the best view.  It was fun to sit on the train and people watch before the tour.  Toledo had the cutest old men- just sitting around.




well, this guy was standing.


We also saw the cutest little girl.  She was fabulous, and had a bag.  It was adorable.  She was with her dad, and saw a family friend, and walked over with a strut saying "Hola!" at the top of her lungs.  It was so cute, and worthy of a photo.




Here is us on the train, with our cafe:




Then we were off!  The train was fun.  It went around the perimeter of the town, then across the bridge, so you could see all of Toledo.  The train had audio-commentary in Spanish and English.  The little factoids were fun to hear.  Our seats were great- and super bumpy.  We also were able to stare at the cars behind us. 
















So you can ride the train too- some videos!








Following the fun train ride, we walked across town to visit the San Juan de los Reyes Monasterio.  On our way, we stopped at a nun bakery, and bought mazapan for my parents, that was made by nuns.  How fun!








Cathedral made of Mazapan


Then we arrived at the Monastery.  After a few short minutes, we were greeted by the rest of the Mordoff-Oven's crew.




Ryan thought this was hi-larious


the result


when the Mordoff-Oven clan arrived






door
mor-door
We walked through the monastery, of course taking oh-too-many photos...


I'm pretty intense




strutting my stuff..










let's see if we got the shot!


Following the Monastery tour, we all decided to grab lunch together. It took a bit of wandering here and there before we found a place to eat that everyone wanted.








I also stopped at a pottery store, and picked up this little guy:




Every building in Toledo has one of these tiles for the building number.  I bought "27" since it is our anniversary.  The gentleman I bought it from was the person who made it.  Although, he said I looked too young to be married- let's hope people still say that in 10 years!


wandering toledo


stopping for some pics




We settled on lunch that had a mix of everything.  Although, I think the whole table ordered hamburguesa.  The hamburgers sort of tasted like meatballs- but they were good.  Lunch was ruined by a hornet/bee/something or another, so I sat on the swing to eat my food to get away from it.






weeee!


After lunch, we parted ways, since we had plans to hang out the next morning.  Toledo is known for its Mazapan, so Ryan and I wanted to try some.  We went to the funniest nun bake store, that had little nun dolls making food in the window. 


so busy.






I wanted to buy a nun doll, but they didn't sell any.  Instead, we had two mazapan and espresso.  Mazapan was so yummy- we certainly weren't disappointed!




After our snack and coffee break, we headed to the Sinagoga de Santa Maria.  This was a building that had jewish, christian and moorish influences.  It was a synagogue that was taken over by the Christians.  The place ended up being somewhat lamesauce.  It was a bit overpriced, full of weird art, no cameras were allowed- and there wasn't much to see.  So we sat in the courtyard and took crazy photos to feel like we paid for something.














thumbs down!


After the synagogue, we wandered around.  I wanted to find a post office to buy a stamp, and after walking up and down the streets many, many times, we found the post office.  But, it was closed. 






A leon car, like Brie Leon!


we love our shoes!




Ryan was obsessed with this dog
At this point, we were Toledo'd out.  So, we thought we'd go back to the hotel, grab a book and get some wine to read and relax.  When we got to the hotel, we found Ryan's parents, who were getting ready to leave for the train station.  They said Sonny and Lindsey had exchanged their tickets, and left earlier.  We thought we'd try that out too.






Before we crammed into the cab, I ran down the street to pick up a bracelet, and salvaged a tile from the garbage.  I am my dad's daughter.


Once we got to the train station, I tried my luck at switching the tickets.  The man at the counter did not have a clue as to what I was trying to do.  Next up, Ryan.  After waiting in line for what seemed like forever, and getting another gentleman, he succeeded in getting an earlier train. We then stopped in the food shop, picked up some pringles, and were on our way.


The train ride was only about 30 min, and once we arrived in Madrid we hailed a cab.  Our driver got a bit lost, but alas, we arrived at our hotel, Hotel Liabenny.  Our hotel was just minutes away from the main plaza, Puerta del sol.




We checked into our hotel, and they gave us our key for a room on the 7th floor.  When we arrived at the door, we opened it, only to find another family was in there.  The lady came to the door slightly confused, we were slightly embarrassed, and soon after the bellman was running behind us with the key to our correct room.  yikes.  We were just happy that everyone in the room was fully clothed!


We opened our door with no problems, only to find the biggest room we had yet!  It even had a couch, chair, and entry hallway!  Score for the Mordoffs!  We were excited to have a nicer hotel as our trip was unwinding.


the entry way




our view
After we settled in, it was pretty late at this point.  We decided to just walk around a bit to see some of the buildings lit up at night.


hotel elevator mirror shot






After wandering around, we went to the grocery store to buy salami, bread, cheese, wine and some other snacks.  We went back to the hotel and had a low key night- chowing down on all the goodies.
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