Windmills of Vejer

Windmills dotted the edges of the old town, providing a sustainable and renewable place to grind grain for bread over the centuries. There is always a wind from somewhere blowing through the hill town! We stopped to visit a lone mill, and were just as impressed with the view over the old city.

At the opposite corner of the town there is windmill park, so we found our way there like good sleuths. All the hunting was well-rewarded as one of the windmills had been restored and was in working order, with a guide.

Inside was a display of artifacts associate with milling,

and within moments we were invited up the narrow stairs to see the working parts ….

like the mill stones, feed hopper, flour chute and so on ….

and the powerful timber cog that is turned by the windmill spinning in the breeze, and transfers that enegy to the mill stones ….

Our guide explained how the cogs were constructed of dense parallel grain olive wood and pushed into tapered holes in the drive wheel after being wrapped with wet canvas, and then driven home. What great technology! Simple and strong, ingenious really. I was interested in the heart-shaped holes in the shutters, so he asked for my camera, climbed up and took this photo for me ….

Cute isn't it? Do you think we could return to simple technology like this if necessary? Maybe we won't have to if alternative renewable energy sources are properly developed, but I think we will return to timber in preference to steel, as timber can be quickly replaced by good forestry.

 

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22 thoughts on “Windmills of Vejer

  1. I keep going back to look at that majestic wheel, imagining the rhythmic creaking as it drives the grinding wheels. I like imagining this pleasant scene – knowing life was tough, back then, but nothing to the infernos of the industrial revolution which followed. This was a great base town, Christine – those wildflowers … Have a fantastic weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. How wonderful that you were able to look inside. I’ve always felt, with no basis really, that one day civilization will begin – maybe even it’s already almost imperceptibly begun – retrace its steps. Although some cultures have deviated less from the traditional path then others. It will be a marathon for western corporatised civilization. Love the photo through the heart shaped hole… it stole mine ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. The windmills are so beautiful. I suppose there is a good reason they don’t make them like that anymore, but it’s too bad they don’t. Love the view through the heart window. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Isn’t the heart-shaped window cute? I don’t know why there aren’t more windmills in Christchurch and its surrounds. We always seem to have lots of wind.

  5. I love the plain circular squatness of the windmill shape. And I also love the craftsmanship of the artefacts and the workings – I felt the same pleasure in the bee museum. The heart-shaped view has the added benefit of revealing a garden. A lovely post.

  6. Of course it makes one think of Cervantes, Christine – but I think the area was much harder than this lovely countryside. And I agree with AnnaLisa, who comments on the enchanting vision and the gifts of preserving and conserving these artifacts. Marvellous stuff !

  7. Windmills are beautiful – and once so useful. Fortunately some are left and preserved. In Sweden we have them too, but here they are rather big, and renovated into real homes. People live in them as in an ordinary house.

  8. I want to be there, smelling that wood and looking through that window. You’ve taken some fine photos here, Christine, really capturing the essence of a working mill.

    • we were so lucky to find the windmill man there Jo … and he was keen to show us everything, we just made a donation as we left ๐Ÿ™‚ I know you will there one day and see through the little heart shapes in the shutters!

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