martes, 14 de septiembre de 2010

Cuenca. Part 3.

This is the "Puente de San Pablo".

Couple of facts: The bridge you see is the new one, which was built in 1902, using iron and wood, because the old one ended up falling down. That one was built between 1533 and 1589, and made from rocks.

 It´s about 40 meters tall and 60 meters long. The wind get´s noticeable when crossing it and the wood in the floor squeaks when you step, that and the height can make crossing this bridge scary, specially if you have fear of heights, but i felt quite safe miself.

View of Cuenca from the bridge. In the anime, there´s a big dam at this point (which i did found, but not in Cuenca), and the city goes straight up instead of making a corner like in real life.

View of "Las Casas Colgadas" from the bridge.

And here´s something i didn´t know. The whole bridge was full of locks like this one, with messages and stuff written on them. I don´t think there´s a tradition of eternal love or anything like that, but it´s a nice way of leaving a message without ruining the bridge with scratches or paint. I guess they retire this once in a while, because if locks keep acomulating they would make quite a bit of weight.

OK, finally here we are, the Time Telling Fortress. Err... I mean the Parador of Cuenca.
Paradores is a chain of Spanish luxury hotels, the hotels are often in restored castles, palaces, fortresses, convents, monasteries and other historic buildings. In this case, they have taken the old convent of San Pablo, and converted in into a hotel.

Sadly i didn´t take as much pictures of this place as i should have (Damn me...). The door in the real Parador matches the one in the anime, but it has glass doors instead of a classic wood one.

There are several differences betwen the actual building and the one in the anime. This building it´s only a part, the abandoned school to be exact, and the whole church looking side has dissapeared. The other parts would be some random color buildings, based on cuenca´s traditional ones, the Mangana clock tower (more on this later) and the Takemikazuchi garage - playground.

These are the stairs in the courtyard. I am sad to report that there´s no door to an illegal distillery.

Or maybe there is...

Feliciaaaa!!!! (The first OVA is awesome). Notice how different the enviroment on the real Parador and the anime one is.

I asked permission to enter the building and take a couple of pictures, apparently the access is free (at least to this part...) and there is a bar you can go take a drink (be aware, it´s a little expensive). I asked the recepcionist about " the japanese cartoons" but he didn´t seem to have a clue or played fool.

A Parador is a Luxury hotel, so everything looks perfect while retaining the classic look. All of this furniture is gone in the anime. All of this luxury and ultra educated manners of the staff don´t really suit me, as well as the price of the room, that was the reason that i didn´t stay in here on this trip, but if i come back to Cuenca someday, i´ll make sure to do it, that way i will be able to walk around here without feeling out of place.

This is a clock inside the parador, the one in the series looks based on this one.

 All of these luxury chairs and furniture are gone for good in the anime. Inside of the Parador, you notice 2 things: The silence, and the fresh temperature even with a hot day outside. Maybe it had Aircon, but these old buildings are quite fresh in winter and keep the heat nicely in winter by themselves.

 This is the small patio of the Parador. Absolute peace in here.

While you are here you can try to catch a glimpse of the ghost of the fortress...

In the anime, a fountain similar to this one is located at the outside of the Fortress, as seen in Episode 7.

 In the anime, the church looking part and part of the Parador is gone. This could have been caused by a natural landslide took that part off, or maybe it went down as a consecuence of a battle. Also, notice that the hills on the back of the parador mostly match the anime again, a Vector Zero series walking tank surely comes handy here...

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