Requerdo Cartagena

Cartagena Spain (2) (800x598)It has been very close to 40 years since we first visited Cartagena.  Lisa was just hardly a year old and Ana was to join us in November.  Someone had recommended a fabulous restaurant named Chamonix. (sp), and after a fabulous meal we toured some of the landmarks.  Today, Chamonix is history (10 years ago) and Cartagena is a grown up modern port.  For years the area had been dominated by the military because of its strategic location.  In fact the U.S. Navy had a Naval Ammunition Depot in the port area.  The hills sounding the deep  water port still show evidence of present and past military instillations.

Cartagena Spain (10) (800x600)This area of Spain is also famous for a sweet yellow liquor that is labeled simply “43” or as  it is popularly known as “Cuarenta Y Tres”.  As we disembarked there were two beautiful Spanish ladies handing out 50 ml samples of  “The Spanish Smooth Temptation”, to all who would accept the gift. It has an alcoholic content of 31%!

Table 128 Gang (800x665)There is a concessionaire in the city that offers, what we though was a hop-on hop-off bus that would give us a grand overview of the city for 7 Euros – about $10.  so along with several other passengers, our gang at table 128 paid the fare and hopped on board,  only to find out that it was a 30 minute ride and no getting off, except at the end.  Though we felt it was a rip off since the one in Madeira was 4 Euros for all day, there wasn’t much we could do but just assume we were a part of the city economic recovery plan.  Once we disembarked, we found this wonderful park bench that was located at the beginning of a beautiful pedestrian mall and asked someone to take this group photo.  The bronze statue is of a Spanish serviceman in deep thought.  From left to right in a circle around the statue  is Flo, Me, Aubrey, Bill, Barbara and Robin.  We have bonded so well, we just laugh most of the time we are together.

Several streets connected to the pedestrian mall are lit with these beautiful street lights.

Cartagena Spain (19) (600x800)

Cartagena Spain (23) (800x600)While looking for a bite to eat (and a toilet) we found a hole in the wall that had obviously been a hangout of US Navy sailors and this ceramic plaque of the USNS Big Horn, was proudly displayed on the dining room wall.   We treated our selves to the “Menue del Dia” of bread, a drink, salad, mixed paella and desert for 9 Euros. A full meal deal.  Later Barbara remembered that she had some post cards of Port Angeles and we returned and gave them a gift.   Not to be outdone, they returned with a very nice folded map and light kisses on he cheek.  We have found that no matter where one goes, if you attempt to speak the language, you have made a friend.

Tuesday must have been “field day” for elementary school children as wherever we went there classes of children led/herded through the streets with teachers using whistles and songs and clapping of hands to liven the day.  In my final picture the kids are sitting quietly as they are give instruction on the history of the ancient ruins under restoration.   Notice the red uniform jackets.

Cartagena Spain (54) (800x598)

Next: A sea day to relax and catch up for our next port; Sousse, Tunisia.

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