Sunday, July 27, 2008

Lions, and Tigers, and BEARS -- Oh MY!!!

I finally got a picture of the BEARS located on the A-1, highway into Madrid. I was so excited. Unfortunately, it took a traffic jam to accomplish this feat but I finally did it. There are actually 2 sets of these mama bears with 2 cubs on each side of the road. I love them! But there is also some significance to bears in Madrid as well.

As many visitors to Madrid know, there is statue of another bear and a Strawberry tree, "El Oso y el Madrono" at Puerta de Sol, the center and heart of Madrid. This statue is the symbol of the city of Madrid. It is on everything that belongs to the city. A visit to Madrid is not complete without a picture taken by this statue.

Bears were once very plentiful in the area which was once called "Ursania." This is the reason that the flag of Madrid is red with 7 white stars. Each star represents one of the administrative areas of the province of Madrid, which are the City of Madrid, Alcala de Hernares, Torrelaguna, San Martin de Valdeiglesias, El Escorial, Getafe, and Chinchon -- But, together the stars are said to represent the constellation in Ursa Major known as the Big Dipper or Big Bear.

So that's your history of Madrid lesson for today. We have learned to love this country and this city, but more importantly, the people. We consider it a great blessing to live here for a time. So next time you see a bear, pause for a moment, remember Madrid and think of us!


Becca said...

Well done mom, that was so informative. I have a picture of myself by that statue, but now I know why it's so important to actually get a picture by it! I love you so much! I'm jealous Jen is coming there to see you this week! I'm looking forward to Christmas already!

Ryan said...

Daaa Bears! I remember you trying to take a picture of those bears when we were in Spain back in February. Mission accomplished!

Ryan and Melissa said...

mom, I'm so proud of you! I guess I haven't checked this in a while. I'm sure I'll learn more to come!