So we woke up late, Ryan found these chocolate donuts and bought and ate a ton. We left the hotel and Ryan was still hungry so he grabbed some sandwich baguette thing while I really went out on a limb and stopped off at Burger King. We went to the parking structure where I paid $45 for overnight parking (car was only there 12 hours)....you have to love the value of the dollar compared to the Euro!
We started off on the hour long drive from Madrid to Segovia. While driving on their highways I noticed two things...(1) they have those stupid automatic traffic ticket things like Australia. So if you speed you automatically get nailed for a ticket. I have a fond recollection of this because when I returned form Australia I found three tickets mailed to me. One cool thing is the Tom Tom GPS actually alerted me of some of the speed traps by blinking and beeping anytime I went into one of these speed traps....I'm kind of scared to see how many tickets I ended up getting.
The second thing I noticed is that road rage knows no borders. Ryan and I witnessed one of the most violent and aggressive road rage incidents I've ever seen. These two cars were purposely swerving and trying to hit each other and eventually pulled off the road to fight. We were just glad they got off the road because they were risking the lives of others to fuel their rage.
We got off the road after paying the appropriate tolls and drove into the beautiful city of Segovia. This is exactly what you think of when you imagine old world Europe. Small, narrow streets, medieval architecture, and a beautiful cathedral and castle. We drove around the city wall (yes, it has a very old city wall just like you'd imagine) to survey all of the town. We turned around and I found myself on the wrong side of a one-way road. I honestly have no idea how we made it...but through very creative driving, pulling off onto the sides of the road, getting the funniest looks I've ever seen from Spaniards we made it through it. Ryan was so embarrassed he turned and said, "These people are going to kill us." I replied, "That's why I keep looking straight ahead, if you don't make eye contact with them you don't feel any guilt."
We worked our way around and found this old Monastery that Ryan said was straight out of an Indiana Jones movie...and I agreed. Ryan caught this shot of me just taking in the moment and enjoying the view of this beautiful historic place.
The coolest thing about doing what I do is the opportunity to sometimes just sit down and talk about what you're seeing...not to do the tourist thing to come and see, snap a few shots and get back on the tour bus. Ryan and I just sat there and spoke about the place and took 30 minutes to enjoy the surroundings...it was awesome.
We left the Monastery and headed to the hills to shoot the castle from high atop the city....but this post is long enough and that story will be saved for part 2....