Cosas de Sevilla #3 and #4, Fall 2017
Dear Friends and Family of The Texas Tech University Center in Sevilla,
Week three we had the unique opportunity to visit the very place the ships were built, sailors recruited, and from where Columbus sailed to discover the new world, an event that totally changed the course of world history.
Friday the group traveled to the neighboring province of Huelva, with Christopher Columbus and his voyage to America the main focus of the day. Our first stop was Palos de la Frontera, the departure city. We visited the well where Colombus filled up with water for the last time before setting out on the open seas. Those who wanted to drink from “Columbus' well” were a bit disappointed to find it has long since dried up.
Our next stop was La Rábida. Here we visited the monastery where Columbus convinced Friar Pérez, the confessor of Queen Isabel, that his journey was a worthwhile project. Friar Pérez was later instrumental in convincing the queen to fund the journey. We saw the rooms where some of these famous conversations between Columbus and Friar Pérez took place. The monastery, still functioning as such today, also has an interesting collection of art and maps relating to Columbus. Once we finished at the monastery, we went down to the shore to visit the life-size replicas of the Niña, the Pinta and the Santa María. Everyone had fun climbing all over the ships, and the general consensus was one of awe that such small ships were able to cross the unknown Atlantic Ocean. Of course, Columbus had no idea of where he was once he reached his destination, but we are the beneficiaries of his vision and Isabel´s support.
After finishing at the ships, students returned to Sevilla from where a number visited either the beaches at Cádiz, Spain or the beautiful Algarve area in southern Portugal, and specifically Lagos, Portugal. This area is the farthest southwestern point of Europe.
The following week, week number 4, was a full week of classes, and the highlight (for most) was a most interesting cultural experience, a Spanish bullfight. The Wednesday before the event, Dr. Inglis presented the group with a power point and a thorough overview to help students truly understand this unique Spanish tradition. I believe most students will agree that a bullfight in Spain is quite a spectacle!
¡Hasta la próxima! We will have some pictures of our adventures, later.