It’s best to know when to toss aside your day’s travel plan, and, when you do, to give in gracefully to defeat and reshape the day so that it becomes memorable. Who knows? As time passes, we might not even remember that the brilliant day on our journey wasn’t even our original plan.
Case in point: our second day in Seville. The plan was to take the train from Jerez to Seville and to arrive at the Cathedral in mid-morning. Two hours should be enough for viewing the church. We’d dine well at a place nearby which had great ratings. Late afternoon we’d stroll over to the Plaza de Espana before taking a train back to Jerez.
We caught our intended train but as the train approached the station in Seville, our English-born friend turned to us and said she needed a cup of tea. “Tea? You just had a cup at breakfast!” As Beth doesn’t drink any caffeinated drinks, it was hard to understand why we would have to delay our touring for a cup of tea. Beth looked at her watch. Clearly, the tea would set us back, but maybe not by too much.
How old is the Cathedral? The Cathedral actually started as a grand mosque, with construction beginning in 1172. Within a century, the mosque underwent its own conversion to become a Christian Cathedral under King Ferdinand III.
Seville’s wealth grew and so did the Cathedral. “According to local oral tradition, the members of the cathedral chapter said: ‘Let us build a church so beautiful and so grand that those who see it finished will think we are mad.’ “ The Cathedral continued to be expanded and enhanced until its completion in 1511.
As in many other important churches, the artistic materials, details, and workmanship were outstanding.
When did we realize that even though we hadn’t finished touring the Cathedral, we’d taken so much time that our chosen restaurant would soon end serving lunch? We had no choice but to head straight for the restaurant, where we discovered many people ahead of us in line. The disappointing decision was made to go somewhere else for lunch.
After settling ourselves in at another restaurant a few doors away, we checked the time. Beth had forgotten to bring her camera on the day’s outing, and so Joe used his iPhone for photography. When Beth takes photos it usually adds extra time to any outing. Without her camera, we assumed we would spend less time rather than more in the Cathedral. We had sorely underestimated just how much there was to see and how interested we were in everything around us. Then, too, we realized just how tired we were from the touring.
Looking back, we were sorry the day hadn’t gone as originally planned, but clearly that plan had a few major flaws. The Cathedral merited the extra time that we gave it.
The plan forward was clear. After lunch, we took a taxi directly to the train station and headed for a little café for our friend to get a cup of tea before we caught our train to Jerez.