The [Moorish] Doors

Some of my favorite doors on the narrow streets of the Moorish District of Frigiliana.

(Click for a closer look.)

Check out the open door on left, second row from top.
That first step would make me think twice about breaking on through (to the other side).

The Watercolorist

After reaching the heights of the Moorish District of Frigiliana on Monday (see yesterday’s post), we came upon an artist’s studio. Above the door was a sign that read “Acuarelas” (Watercolors). The works displayed outside were so intriguing that we decided to go in for a closer look. (Click the images for the color enlargements.)

KLAUS HINKEL.

We were greeted by a charming man who turned out to be the artist, Klaus Hinkel (check out his website here). Klaus has had his studio in Frigiliana for 20 years. During our entire visit, I kept thinking how much My Mother The Watercolorist Dowager Duchess would have loved Klaus and his work. This was a day I would have enjoyed sharing with her.

San Geraldo and I very quickly fell in love with a large, framed, fine-art giclee print. Klaus painted the original during one of many trips to Morocco. The original painting now hangs in Boston, Massachusetts, where San Geraldo and I first met.

Judyshannonstreetwhat chose three small, unframed Frigiliana street scenes.

When Judy wondered aloud how she would get a large framed painting home to Seattle, Klaus said, “Oh, it rolls.”

We all looked perplexed and imagined attaching wheels to the bottom of the frame.

Judy followed with, “And then what, it would just fit under my seat on the plane?”

Klaus laughed and said, “I mean, I take it out of the frame and it rolls [up] in a cardboard tube.”

“PACIENCIA” (PATIENCE). 75 X 63 CM (30 X 25 INCHES).
PROUDLY DISPLAYED IN OUR LIVING ROOM.

Klaus and I initially began to converse in Spanish and he asked where I was from. When I told him I was American, he was surprised. I’ve been told at times I speak Spanish with an Italian accent. But Klaus, originally from Germany, told me he thought I was either Swedish or German. Ach du lieber and Swedish meatballs! Swedish or German? Italian and Spanish are at least both Romance languages!

These are called “panqueques” in Spanish. Or, as I pronounce it, Flappen Jacken Hooten…

Frigiliana

Many non-Spaniards pronounce the name incorrectly.

I told Judyshannonstreetwhat to say “Frigid-lee-AH-nah” and then make the “g” softly gutteral and drop the “d.” She had an hour in the car to practice on our drive to “Frigiliana,” the Pueblo Blanco (White Village) we visited Monday.

This is one of the most beautiful of the White Villages of Southern Spain — so-called because they are constructed of white-stucco and not, as some have wondered, because only white people are allowed to live in them.

As a matter of fact, Frigiliana prides itself on its enlightenment and respect for diversity. The central plaza is called “Plaza de las Tres Culturas” (Plaza of the Three Cultures) and includes symbols of the three major religions, the Star of David, the Christian Cross, and the Crescent of Islam. Every year in late August, Frigiliana hosts the “Festival of the Three Cultures.”

Beyond that welcome, the village is historic and breathtaking. San Geraldo led the way up through the winding streets of the old Moorish-Mudejar district. Every so often, we’d lose sight of him only to see him peek back around a corner in glee waiting for us to see what was next. We climbed and climbed to the very top of the city, discovering magic all along the way.

(Click the images to see the magic for yourself.)

ALMOST BACK DOWN TO THE PLAZA DE LAS TRES CULTURAS
BEFORE HEADING OFF INTO THE SUNSET.