Saturday, March 17, 2012

Holy Toledo!

Mi patito Julio and I enjoying the beautiful view in Toledo.

El Cathedral in Toledo
Holy Toledo!  If you have ever heard this expression, you will understand how exciting it was to visit this beautiful city.  Toledo was the capital of Spain when the Moors occupied the country, before it was conquered by the Christians in 1561.  This beautiful city is about an hour bus ride southwest of Madrid.  As we all understand, bus rides can be rather boring, so we played the alphabet game to pass the time.  #typicalcollegestudents For those of you who are unfamiliar with the “famous” alphabet game, which was specifically designed to keep families occupied on road trips, I will explain.  You keep an eye outside the car for road signs, billboards and other objects.  Start by looking for any word that begins with the letter “A”.  When you see it, the goal is to yell out the word before anyone else in the car can.  Then, look for a word that starts with the letter “B” and continue to repeat the process until you finish the alphabet.  Once a person shouts a word for their letter, no other person may use the same word.  The object of the game is to finish the alphabet before your opponents.  Unlike America, it was rather easy to locate the letter “Q”, however, “K” proved to be difficult. 

Beautiful monstrance.
As with all our adventures, James, Kaila, my roommate and I arrived in Toledo with no plan or sense of direction.  Hence, I am actually proud of how well we survived.  We were able to visit the “Museo Del Ejército” which was located in the Alcazar.  It was really interesting to be able to see old guns, armor, knives, uniforms, etc. that belonged to the ancient armies of Spain.  Unfortunately, as with most museums, cameras were not allowed inside, hence I sadly do not have any pictures to share.  We also visited the Cathedral, which given my Catholic background I thoroughly enjoyed.  The monstrance was especially magnificent; I have never seen one so beautiful.  I wish I could have fit it in my suitcase to take it home with me to my home parish, St. William's.  Unfortunately, the monstrance absolutely would not have met the 50 pound weight limit at the airport, so security would not have been too pleased.  Also, I do not know if Fr. Andy would be too happy if a random, massive monstrance appeared in our plain adoration chapel.

Kaila, me and James in front of El Museo Del Ejercito
Although Toledo was absolutely beautiful, the view itself is worth a visit, I am glad I chose to study abroad in Madrid.  The city reminded me very much of Sevilla, because it was so rich in culture and history.  However, I feel like I would have really missed home if I studied there since they do not have the extensive American food selections Madrid has.  Needless to say, it was a perfect day trip, and I would absolutely recommend to anyone traveling in Spain to visit Toledo.  


  1. I loved the churches and Cathedrals in Spain, they are the most beautiful I've seen in the world. When I went on the trip in high school we went to Toledo so I totally know what you're talking about when you say it is well worth a visit. I'm so glad you went. Especially now that it isn't arctic outside it's great that you can go out of Madrid and do some site-seeing.

  2. I love you Janette!! Please come visit me soon!