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I went to Spain in April 1973 for my work. The destination was the mercury mines in the Almaden mountains, but I took the opportunity to explore Madrid, too. It was during the time Franco was still dictator but he was aging and easing up his control. Life was becoming easier and less restricted for many Spaniards.
The Spanish mercury mines in Almaden Spain were opened over 2000 years ago by the Romans who used the mercury for cosmetics and have been in constant use since then. At the time I was there, the Almaden mines supplied 70% of the mercury in the world. Because mercury is so poisonous, the miners were allowed to own land (no other workers could own land) so they could work outside for several weeks each month to breathe out as much mercury as possible.
We were allowed access to the mines so, of course, I took my camera! We first descended with miners by electric elevator. Once down hundreds of feet, we got out of the elevator. To reach the various floors above and below each elevator stop we had to climb up or down on wooden ladders held together with twine. The mercury was so rich that it oozed out of the walls and ceilings and puddled on the floors. As you can see from the photo of two miners, it was quite dark in the mine.
On the way back to Madrid from Almaden, we passed the man below on the street of a small town. I didn't feel I could ask the driver to stop, so I took his picture from the moving car. Fortunately the light seemed to fall only on his face giving him the look of a painting by Rembrandt.
I attended a bullfight in Madrid. It looks like the picador is running away, but he is actually a decoy to draw the bull toward him.