Installed in 1900 this Gillett and Johnston clock has run nearly continuously since then - keeping time on the clock tower of the Toronto Old City Hall.
Be amazed - Toronto relies on this ancient clock to keep time for the downtown core.
The bells are legendary and are an aural symbol of Toronto. The chiming of the bells punctuate the city, marking each 15 minutes of the day - seven days a week, 24 hours a day.
The clock room houses three bells. The largest bell, all 11,000 pounds of it, is known as Big Ben. There is one small and unofficial inscription just below the coat of arms on the bell and reads "J.K.Oct.18, 1900". Four garnished stone gargoyles grace the upper corners of the clock tower.
The Synagogue of Santa María la Blanca (literally Synagogue of Saint Mary the White, originally known as the Ibn Shushan Synagogue, or commonly the Congregational Synagogue of Toledo) is a museum and former synagogue in Toledo. Erected in 1180, according to an inscription on a beam, it is disputably considered the oldest synagogue building in Europe still standing. It is now owned and preserved by the Catholic Church.
Its stylistic and cultural classification is unique among surviving buildings as it was constructed under the Christian Kingdom of Castile by Islamic architects for Jewish use. It is considered a symbol of the cooperation that existed among the three cultures that populated the Iberian Peninsula during the Middle Ages.
The synagogue is a Mudéjar construction, created by Moorish architects for non-Islamic purposes. But it can also be considered one of the finest example of Almohad architecture because of its construction elements and style. The plain white interior walls as well as the use of brick and of pillars instead of columns are characteristics of Almohad architecture. There are also nuances in its architectural classification, because although it was constructed as a synagogue, its hypostyle room and the lack of a women's gallery make it closer in character to a mosque. Though it does not have a women's gallery today, an early twentieth century architect suggested that it did at one time have a one
The focal point of the synagogue is the scallop-shell-topped arch at the center of the building. This was the location of the Torah ark. In many synagogues found throughout the Jewish Diaspora and what is now Israel, the scallop shell motif is a marker for the location where a portable ark should be placed. Evidence from Catholic altarpieces depicts the ark as a tall, movable structure that would fit nicely in this particular niche. It is torpedo shaped, much like a traditional Sephardic Torah scroll case.
The synagogue was turned into a church in 1405 or 1411, but without any major renovations. It took at that time the name of Santa María la Blanca (Saint Mary the White) and today it is most commonly known by this name.
The interior features a series of arcades supported on a network of twenty-four octagonal piers and eight engaged piers. These octagonal supports line the central aisle of the synagogue and support the large arcade of horseshoe arches above. The arches rest on intricately detailed capitals with finely carved pinecones and other vegetal imagery. These capitals are Mudéjar in style and are derived from classical, Corinthian antecedents as well as Byzantine concepts.
A cloudy day so we lounged around, catching up on TV, reading and watching football. Fruit for breakfast and an omelet for lunch.
We had dinner plans with Bill and Carol, but it was going to be a chilly evening to dine outside so we decided to rebook.
John was content with two football games to watch. I watched the original, original A Star is Born with Gloria Gayner!!
A lazy day until we went downtown to meet a couple for dinner. She had been in John's Spanish class in the fall and is here for two weeks on vacation.
We went to Topolo, known for their pork shank, which three of us had. No one took a photo!
We were just sitting around in our jammies and drinking coffee when Carol called and said "you've got 15 minutes if you want to go to Malpica and Copala"!
Malpica is a sleepy town outside of Mazatlan, known for its bakery. It is far from the honking horns and crazy drivers currently in Mazatlan for the holidays.
The oven that makes the bread and pastries taste so good.
Mural depicting the town's history.
Just before Concordia, off highway 40, there is a small town with hot springs. The government built a laundry facility over the springs which included washboards.
Kind of a fun, communal activity, doing the laundry together. But then you have to wring those jeans out, and drag it home to hang out and dry.
Bill has a big bag of candy to pass out to the kids.
Carol, then John, testing the water temperature, HOT.
On to Copala, passing by Concordia.
Copala used to be a busy little town, but since they've built the new, faster highway to Durango, this town is fading away.
No stoplights surrounded by the Sierra Madre mountains
During the last part of the 19th century, Copala was the center of the region’s silver mining district. Eventually, the mines closed, and the town became nearly deserted. Today, it's a National Historic Landmark with 650 full-time residents and a part-time community of retired Americans and Canadians devoted to the village’s picturesque solitude.
The black wagon says Copala Butter Company.
For a time, early in the 20th century, the largest mine operator in the region was Charles Butter, who also owned properties in Colombia, Nicaragua, South Africa and Australia. His Copala operation included 11,000 acres of lumber and grazing land, 2,000 acres with mineral deposits, 4 tube mills, a 1,000-horsepower steam boiler, a foundry and machine shop. Among the most productive on Mexico's West coast, the Butter mines processed 3,000 tons of gold and silver ore monthly. The Mexican Revolution took its toll here as elsewhere, though, and the town also suffered a cholera epidemic and a devastating cyclone. What had been a city of almost 10,000 shrank to less than a tenth of that in decades to follow.
Now the bells of the Iglesia San Jose ring out while the square is mostly deserted.
Time for lunch. This restaurant just opened. Seems there's a scandal/murder associated with the place. Husband came home and found his wife in flagrante with her boyfriend, they ran out naked and the wronged husband shot him.
The sign by the fireplace also says Copala Butter Company, which has nothing to do with the dairy spread. Instead, it’s a small restaurant 400-year-old structure which is said to have previously housed the offices of the Butter Mining Company.