On Monday, the plan was to catch the 8:30 train to Toledo. We set out early because we had to buy tickets. It turned out that pretty much all the trains were full, from people who bought tickets in advance. So we ended up having to catch the 12:30 train, which left us with several hours of nothing to do at the train station. We decided to wander around the area, and eventually we found a church called St. Jerome's. We had mass in the side chapel there. It was a nice place, and it's the only church I've seen with a statue of God the Father.
Lunch was McDonalds. The price was very cheap, compared to America. They had a Big Mac, medium fry, medium drink and 4-piece chicken mcnuggets for 6.50 euros. The other people were saddened to learn that Europe does not have "supersize" drinks and fries; that is just an American thing. Personally, I'm looking forward to getting home and not eating fast food all the time anymore.
It looks like the plane is landing in Germany now. I'll continue writing later.
Germany made us go through three security checks. I guess they're pretty strict about those sorts of things.
Continuing from where I left off, we had to go to Toledo without Fr. John, our fearless leader. This is not a recommended idea. The self-appointed map checker immediately got us lost, because he was holding the map upside-down.
Toledo is on top of a hill, so you have to go up a lot of stairs to get there. The big things they have there is their special bread, the special Toledo silver they use to make fancy swords, and some connection to Don Miguel Cervantes. Nobody told us what his connection to Toledo was--maybe he was born there--but there were a lot of Don Quixote things for sale.
We visited the Cathedral at Toledo. The people there were very strict about not using flash photography. They didn't want people to take pictures at all, actually. Pretty much all the tourists ignored this rule, though. The art was so beautiful that you want to take pictures of it. Unfortunately, most of the cathedral was very poorly-lit, so it was impossible to see some of the pictures, even when you used flash photos.
For example, here's a picture I took, with a camera flash. It's still very dark.
El Greco did a lot of pictures for the cathedral. He's the famous Spanish artist who draws everyone really skinny. I liked his art better than some of the other art there, in which the people were rather fat.
We wanted to explore other places in Toledo, but everywhere (including the cathedral) made you pay to go inside. So instead of visiting places like we planned, we had three hours of window shopping. I found it to be rather tiring.
When we got back home, I rested for a bit, then I began my mission to go to dinner at one of the three Irish pubs I found earlier.
O'Connell was too full, and there was nowhere to sit. Murphy's kicked me out, because my credit card didn't work. Appropriately enough, I got completely lost and wandered around Madrid for about a half hour, in search of the third Irish pub...
Getting lost on the way to this bar is a literature joke, come to life.
There was no problem with my credit card there, so I had a pint of Guinness at the bar and watched a Manchester United game with the Irish tourists. I also talked with a group of people from California, just like me. It was very nice to be in an all English speaking environment again, right in the middle of Spain.