We drove 50 minutes to Antequera Wednesday. We’d been there before (click here and here) but hadn’t explored the World Heritage Site, Bronze Age burial mounds outside the city.
Created between 3000 and 2000 BCE, these “dolmens” are the largest in Europe. When “Dólmen de Menga” was opened in the 19th century, several hundred skeletons were found. Just beyond it is Dolmen de Viera.
A bit further from town is the Dólmen del Romeral. It’s newer, dating back to ‘only’ 1800 BCE. When we arrived at the entrance path, it was swarming with bees. I’m allergic and I didn’t have an EpiPen, so I decided to stay clear.
San Geraldo walked through the bees and went inside. He came out and told me that I really had to see this one because it was so different. He said the bees didn’t seem to be bothering anyone. No way, I thought. “No way,” I said. I refused to take the chance.
But then I said, “Antequera Hospital is just 5 minutes away. OK.”
Inside was wonderful. I was so grateful to have risked tit — especially since I didn’t get stung by the largish, blackish bees. Maybe some kind of Carpenter Bee? They were frenetic. A couple bounced off my bare arms as I passed, but they weren’t at all aggressive.
I feel so brave. And yet, today I think I should pick up a new EpiPen.
(Click the images to see them swell to twice their size… at least.)
VISITOR CENTER AT LEFT. SAN GERALDO IN THE LEAD.
THE TRAIL. DOLMEN DE MENGA IN CENTER.
I LAGGED BEHIND TO TAKE PHOTOS.
I THOUGHT THOSE WERE SAN GERALDO’S BUNS, SO I FOLLOWED.
BUT, THIS GUY WASN’T GOING ANYWHERE.
DOLMEN DE MENGA.
SOME OF THE MEGALITHS INSIDE.
IT LOOKED BOTTOMLESS TO ME. SO GLAD IT WAS COVERED.
SAN GERALDO HEADING BACK OUT.
DOLMEN DE VIERA.
SAN GERALDO IS ALREADY INSIDE. (TO STAY OUT OF THE WAY OF MY CAMERA.)
SAN GERALDO BACK OUTSIDE.
ON HIS WAY THROUGH THE PARK AND BACK TO THE CAR.
DOLMEN DEL ROMERAL, ALSO CALLED THOLOS DE EL ROMERAL,
FOR THE DOUBLE-DOMED STYLE OF THE BURIAL MOUND.
THE PATH AND ENTRY WERE ASWARM WITH BEES.
PEACEFUL AND SURPRISING INSIDE.
THE PORTAL LEADING TO THE TWO DOMES.
LOOKING INTO THE (BARRED) SECOND CHAMBER.
THAT’S A ROUND MIRROR SET UP TO REFLECT THE SECOND DOME.
We were supposed to be in London until Wednesday, for a total of 7 days. But, after two days, San Geraldo had had enough and asked if he could come home Sunday. He said I could stay in London if I wanted but I wouldn’t have enjoyed it without him. Besides, the weather was a lot more depressing than I thought it would be. We have clearly been spoiled by years in Mediterranean climates!
We did have an exceptional time while we were there. We simply should have planned a four-day instead of seven-day holiday. We returned home to rain. But rain and 15C (59F) is a lot easier to tolerate than rain and 2C (35F).
MARBLE ARCH, IN THE RAIN AND SNOW, AS VIEWED FROM A LONDON TAXI.
The photos and stories of London are still to come. Last night, we dropped our bags at home and went to Primavera for dinner. Tynan and Elena met us there. The walk home in the warmish pouring rain was a delight. Until, that is, San Geraldo jumped into a puddle and soaked me. Elena then jumped in a puddle and soaked San Geraldo, which distracted him from me. Kids!
(Click the images to increase the immaturity.)
THE PAVEMENT AND ROAD AS WE LEFT PRIMAVERA LAST NIGHT.
AT LEFT, TYNAN ACTING MISLEADINGLY MATURE.
Once Elena and San Geraldo had enough, Tynan began his rendition of “Singing in the Rain.” It would have been perfect [no it wouldn’t] had it not been for his rubber-soled shoes.
It’s been a long time since we paid a visit to Mariposario de Benalmádena (Benalmádena’s Butterfly Park) just 10 minutes away by car (I guess it helps to have a car), so for Judy’s last day in Spain yesterday (she’ll be back in several months), we drove over and then went to lunch in Benalmádena Pueblo (the old village another 10 minutes away). I’ll share more of the park and pictures from our exceptional lunch. Today, it’s just butterflies. (Click the images to see the flying flowers.)
ONE BUTTERFLY, CONSTANT MOTION.
May the wings of the butterfly kiss the sun
And find your shoulder to light on,
To bring you luck, happiness and riches
Today, tomorrow, and beyond.
— Irish blessing
TWO (GOING AT IT).
AGING BUTTERFLY HELD BY MARINA, THE CHARMING DOCENT.
We took a little drive into the mountains Monday with Judyshannonstreetwhat (click here if you still haven’t met) simply to enjoy the scenery and stop for lunch in the town of Coín (Co-EEN) less than an hour northwest. We arrived just in time for siesta, so we immediately stopped for lunch before strolling the deserted streets of a very small part of this non-touristy town.
A 12-year-old with a skateboard whistled at us as we pulled out of the parking garage beneath Plaza Mercado. He followed the whistle with, “Guay coche [cool car].”
Some sights today. Tomorrow, lunch! (Click to embiggerize the photos.)