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  • Day11

    Wrong turn at Alburquerque...

    June 29, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    When Maria was 8, she was so proud of herself because she could finally spell “Albuquerque”...and then her family moved. She felt wronged because all of that work was for nothing. Now 30+ years later, she learned that it really could have been worse...she could have had to learn to spell it with an extra R.

    Maria made the whole group go to Alburquerque, Spain in the Badajoz region of the Extremadura. She was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico which is named for the Duke of Alburquerque...but spelled incorrectly. Many theories abound, but likely...the Portuguese spelling was adopted because who the heck can pronounce Alburquerque?!?

    In summary, people from Albuquerque, NM are likely the only tourists Alburquerque, Spain ever sees. It’s not an ugly place. It has a lovely castle that apparently is renovated but rarely opens. Sometimes apparently an old man will let you into the cathedral if he happens to be sitting outside it, but not this day. And when the tourist office opened, we were directed to ancient cave paintings which clearly, by the grass covered boardwalk and the derelict sign, hadn’t been visited in decades. We saw no drawings at all. The best part is that the pamphlet shows these great ancient drawings and the tourist office lady pretends that she’s seen them in her adult life...all of this to get two miserable mujeres to hike up a big hill. At least the people of Alburquerque were very friendly and kind...those who showed their faces to us.

    There was a bookstore that was supposed to open after siesta and never did. Poor Mirabel of Libreria Mirabel will never know the quantity of Alburquerque souvenirs she could have moved had she opened that fateful Friday afternoon!😂

    Next up: A day in Portugal.
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