so here's how it started: we got to tarifa and walked to the hostal after a little shopping. there was a couple fútbol fields out back and there were some kids playing there. maybe 7 or 8 of them. they waived for us to join but we declined being the nice temperate people that we are. so we went inside. and after sitting there for a little bit we realized we were idiots to not play with them. so we went down and played with them for probably 30 minutes or so. they made us look REALLY stupid on a couple occasions, but i think we also suprised them a couple other times. it felt good at least to take part in that.
next we headed back up to the room and realized we were hungry. so the girls gave us a list of stuff to get at the grocery store and we headed out. we must have been really into the "let's be in spain" mood (which i'll admit sometimes i lack) and we opted to eat at a local café and bring the food back later. "surf kebab" was the place of choice. how could we resist with such a pretty señorita behind the counter. the food was excellent. reminded me a lot of the tapas from Enebro in Toledo up north. i was pleased. so then we went to the store and frantically grabbed the food as it was closing, headed back, and tried to explain why we weren't hungry.
after an hour or so of some tinto de verano and lord of the rings in spanish, brandon popped the question: "wanna go for a walk?" it was probably a little after 11 then. it was a good idea. we walked for probably 15 minutes through the streets before we happened upon a mysteriously enticing castle on a hill overlooking the straight of gibraltar. the first one is said castle by day and the second is from above via GoogleEarth (you know you can make it bigger by clicking by now, right?):
ok, so we stumbled upon it and were drawn to climb a wall and scale a muddy cliff to get up to it. we climbed up the northwest side where the front door is.
look how LOOMING THIS IS! and it's just all alone on the top of this hill. no monument, no tour guides, nothing. it just sits here day after day.
then brandon found a way around the edge of the castle to the back side...and holy cow.
i should probably set the scene here on the back side a little better. our light sources were the moon and whenever we took flash photos...and the lighthouse light that flashed by us from about 500 yards north on an island. i'll admit, i was scared the WHOLE time, scared of getting caught, or of a bum jumping out of a broken window, or just scared of the unknown that was all around us. it was then that we made the discovery that i will carry with my the rest of my life until i die. this:
if you look at the GoogleEarth image from above the castle, you will see a little dark spot just to the southwest of the castle proper. that dark spot and the picture above is a stairway down into the ground. and what you see in the image above at the bottom of that stairway is an OPEN DOOR. it was swinging in the wind and when i first saw it i almost lost all bodily control. no, we didn't go down there. we had no light, and i couldn't make myself! but i will find out what is behind that door someday. i will and i must go back! at this point it's the greatest mystery of my life. what could be down there? just a locked door at the end of the passage? or an unguarded way inside the castle!? there was plenty of graffiti on the walls inside, those people had to get in somehow. so anyway.... moving on. this is a very haunting image of the castle on the descent from the hill:
i will continue the night of adventure in another post cause this is turning into a larger project than the papers i have to write for homework. as always, your comments are welcome! thanks for reading!