I took a train from Madrid to Toledo, Spain. I have several photos to share with you from the trip, and will do so soon; but for now, I want to introduce you to Maria and Lucia of Mamagula.
I was traversing the steep, narrow brick roads, heading toward Santo Domingo el Antiguo, when I saw this wonderful little shop and just had to stop, because I knew my wife would love something from there. I struck up a conversation with the forever-smiling Maria, the owner, and Lucia, a lovely young lady that works there. They were so kind (and extremely patient with me while I butchered the Spanish language), and graciously allowed me to capture a few photos.
There was a steady stream of customers walking through the door, and it was clear that these ladies had a great reputation in this town. They seemed to know everyone, and the greetings always included a kiss and a smile. From cheese to...
I spent an afternoon walking around the site of Templo de Debod, located in the heart of downtown Madrid. The solid stone structures were donated to Spain by Egypt in 1971, for the country's help with extracting artifacts in Nubia. When I arrived early in the day, the sun was high in the sky, not the best for photographs, so I stayed until around 4:30. When the sun was lower in the sky, the reflections and highlighting of the leaves in the water perfectly captured the place. You can see more photos on my website.
My last full day in Madrid, I was walking around the city, exploring the winding side streets that stretch out from the center of Puerta del Sol. I was moving along at a relatively quick pace when I came upon a group of people lined up outside the doorway of a small sweets shop. Couples were gazing dreamily into the window as the line continued to grow. I went inside to get a closer look, and found even more people there. I looked up at the next number in the queue and it was at 83. So I pulled a number from the dispenser – the next slot available was 12.
Shortly after I took my number, I noticed a couple walking through the door, appearing to me like they were wondering where to get their number. When I pointed them in the direction of the number machine, they told me that they weren’t there to buy anything – they were good friends with the owner Carlos Mira and interested to see what...
After spending a day at Templo de Debod near downtown Madrid, I came across a lively bunch of people sweeping the leaves from what appeared to be a small sporting field. Out of curiosity, I stood by and patiently awaited commencement of whatever game it was they were planning to play.
Within a couple of minutes, they started tossing small metal balls, similar in size to a baseball, from one side of the rectangular field to another, trying to get as close as possible to a smaller green ball, which appeared to be their target. They were laughing and taunting each other, obviously a tight-knit group of friends who had played this game together several times in the past. I asked their permission to photograph the game—they were fairly annoyed at my presence, but reluctantly agreed. I captured a few shots, then made my way to the train station.