Plasencia Reservoir, SpainPlasencia Reservoir, Spain

On a borrowed bike in Plasencia, Spain, I follow the path along the Rio Jerte out of town, rounding each bend with wonder at where I’ll end up. I feel the lure of discovery and adventure, yet wonder about how far I can allow myself to travel in the limited time I have, a familiar tension that sometimes leaves me late, or lost. I lose the path, find a road, climb a hill, and then my reward emerges from over the summit: a quiet straightaway over the dam that holds back the embalse de Plasencia — the reservoir to the northeast of the city. Water like plate glass in shadows. More than this expanse, I again behold the particularity of the Spanish sky. Sharp cerulean blue saturates the dome, tufted with low lying cumulus clouds. Echoes of El Greco landscapes mix and wash over me like dry wind, cooling my hot eyes.

June 9, 2024