Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Field trip!!!

On Sunday we went to Monserrat again...indeed we went twice, but that's another story.

Mostly we walked, but we took a cremellera up to a higher point...it is a type of train, but it runs on cogs because it is so darned steep.

Many things set Montserrat apart. It is the emotional heartland for Catalans, but there is also something about the hills there that is stunning. Something that is different, despite the crowds. They are also really weirdly shaped. Really weird...let me show you....

Do you see the elephant and the woman????

It really is weirdly shaped, and most stunning...

Can you see the profile of this fellow below? He looks like he eats well and is having a good laugh to me.

Now check out what was on top of his head. There is not a square inch of this place that hasn't been walked over. Any self respecting abbot with a mass of overactive young men is bound to send them off to go and do some harebrained bit of construction. Burns off disruptive energies, that they might spend somewhere more destructive to their soul, gets some work done, and if they kick off? Well, you've already got the dowry (so to speak) and they are dying for a good cause....

Here is a view from the very top looking north-ish...I am quite enamoured with the place.

Nobody carved this fellow below....

but the wind I guess.

There were tons of people there, and lots to do...like climbing....(which youngest wants to try)

This is my über-Catalan photo..the beloved Montserrat with the flag gallantly blowing in the breeze in the foreground.

You can go into the church, and visit the black Madonna (been there, done that, not again this time)...though we did light a couple of candles for some family who could use a hand. No harm in it.

If any of you were unclear that we are in Spain here, and not in North America anymore, check out this staircase. It was like this most of the way down. DO NOT STUMBLE. No Klutzes allowed.



Cratering it is called in climbing.

Fortunately none of us did.

Though we didn't kick back on the edge like these folks did either.....


traveler one said...

OMG I just got dizzy looking at those stairs!

Diane Mandy said...

It looks amazing!

mmichele said...

Those stairs made my stomach flip.
Surely helmets and kneepads are mandatory? :)

hulagirlatheart said...

Those stairs are not for the weak at heart. What beautiful veiws. I just love the rock formations. God has a sense of humor, doesn't he?

elpadawan said...

Great pictures! I saw the elephant! For the climbing part, you could have youngest take some indoor courses first. It'll always be pretty safe in there, and it really is lots of fun. And provides a good workout for all limbs. :)

Nicole said...

Awww, what an awesome place.
Just imagine how it has been a few hundred years back?

Gorgeous mountains!

And those stairs?
Thanks, but no thanks. Sitting on the edge? Not in this Lifetime :D

oreneta said...

Kim...they made me very very cautious.

Diane...just wait!!!

mmichele, i am not sure how much good a helmet would do from that height...I am thinking a parachute! Isn't it called base jumping???

Hula, I would say so.

LP, used to do a whole lot of that....and loved it, wistfully thinking of getting back into it, there is actually some quite good boldering a shortish walk from our place, so there is no reason not too take it up again.

Nicole, when I was younger? I would have DEFINATELY sat on the edge...with kids???mmm, no.

swenglishexpat said...

Fantastic formations! Yes, I did spot both the elephant and the woman (what else?). What a day out!

Mar said...

This is lovely. We never had field trips!! we only made it to the nearby café, ha!