The parking attendant greeted us with a
warm smile, as we got out of the car. After over 3 hours driving, travelling
back from Portugal, we certainly weren’t expecting a friendly welcome from someone
paid to give out parking tickets. But we’re in small town Andalucía, and here people
are especially friendly. We paid our 60 cents parking and took the attendant’s
advice and headed up into the old quarter, offering wonderful views across the
town and the Seville countryside.
We’re in Osuna the renaissance gem hidden
in the south east of Seville Province.
It was once a centre of great wealth and sophistication during the era
of Spanish Royal Dukes, when this village was part of the Kingdom of Seville.
It is home to some magnificent ecclesiastical
buildings as well as a stunning university (where the columns of the university
courtyard sport graffiti and scratched names from across the centuries) and ancient monasteries.
We visited one of the nunneries to buy some
homemade cookies – you ring the bell, and call your order through a rotating
door – a quaint custom that still remains in much of Andalucía.
It’s a fascinating place and close to the
motorway, so makes for a good place to take a break on the Malaga to Seville