Archive | February, 2011

February Wanderlust

3 Feb

Feb 4 – 6: Andorras, The Pyrenees

snowboarding, powder, mountain landscapes, ski lodges, Spanish, winter wear!

Feb 11 – 14: Casablanca and Marakkech, Morocco

souks, textiles, leather sandals, mint tea, terrace cafes, mosques, sunsets, camels?

Feb 17 – 21: Brussels, Belgium and Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Wonder Bar, peace, love, RAVE, canals, and chill

 

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Interlachen

3 Feb

I love my Derechos Humanos class. The other students come from different programs, although sadly not different countries. The teacher, at first seemed strict and mean, is actually easy-going and more understanding of her class’s needs, aka short attention span. She speaks in Spanish very fast, but for some reason, she is much easier to understand. She would lecture the first half of class and the second half we usually move around, do something active and participatory that gets us discussing and talking about human rights issues and voicing our opinions about it to see each others’ points of view. Everyone in my class has already studied in Barcelona the past semester, making them a veteran and me a newb, but it’s okay.

For dinner today:

I had pescadillos, which are medium to small-sized fish that are battered and fried, no bones; this salty lo mein type noodle with really soft beef, and yes, my favorite of all, sopa de lentijes, or lentil soup! Who knew my favorite hot dish would follow me across the Atlantic, but it did. She puts meat in it, actually chorizo, and the sabor is delightful. Huele bien!

Jungfrau, Interlaken, Switzerland

Someone mentioned in my Art & Design class the other day about Interlachen, Switzerland and how the city is infamous for the breath-taking landscapes where most people make a pilgrimage to skydive. I really hope I can rally someone to come and take the adventure with me. I am willing to pay to have one of the most life-changing experiences this semester.

Also, my friend Connor came across an ad on the metro the other day about free Catalan language courses. WHAT?! I’m going to inquire about this, so that I can sign up for it. More and more, I want to delve myself into the Catalonian culture, learn as much as I can and about things I want and desire to learn about, be open to new things. If they don’t work out, then accept it and move on to the next thing that seems promising. I came across this website that posts daily cultural events happening in Barcelona, which pointed to some interesting art exhibits on landscapes–one dealing with photographs of extreme conditions faced in certain landscapes and the other offering a birds eye view perspective into urban cities. Worth checking out.

Right now, all I know how to say in Catalan:

apples – pommas, socks – michongs, fork – forquillado, very good – molve, glass cup – got


The other day in Contemporary Spanish Art, we watched videos from this Italian media artist Marco Brambilla, and at first, I felt uncomfortable watching his videos. But after I began to examine the different techniques he uses to convey interesting points of view, I appreciated his work more than at first impression. I especially enjoyed his message behind Excerpt from Cathedral. The video looks like the mosaic, stained-glass windows you see in church, but actually these patterns in the video are made up of things you see at the mall, including the mall itself. The video’s message intends to convey that consumerism is today’s religion and the people call the mall their church.

See video below:

 

Thank you Jo, LOVES THIS SONG.

 

 

Negras?

2 Feb

Last night, Brittany, Christina, Carolyn, and I saw a flamenco show at Placa Real. It was a small little theater, quite cozy, actually, and intimate. The stage fit perfectly for the group of five performing, a percussionist, two flamenco dancers, a singer, and guitarist. The female dancer only performed once. She wore this bright red dress that fluttered in the air so gracefully. The bold sound of her heels tapping combined with his drew me in while the Spanish singer whose voice so strong and commanding, not harsh but soothing to the ears, sounded so unified with the beats of the drum and the strumming of the guitar. All on stage appeared seamless in their individual performances, and so passionate.

I especially gravitated to the woman, whose eyes fixated with an intensity to the tapping of the male flamenco dancer’s shoes and the rhythm of his motion. The way she looked at him screamed of a chemistry that even I could feel all the way in the back of the room.

The man’s singing, along with the guitarist and percussionist playing, was my favorite part about the flamenco show.

To learn more about Flamenco

Some Flamenco for thought:

Cepa Andaluza, Paco De Lucia

Flamenco Carlos Saura, Paco De Lucia

 

Lorienne and I have mutually come to the conclusion that there are no better bars in town than ones with negra in the name of their bar. After the Flamenco show last night, we tried out Rosa Negra on Laetana, Mojitos and Margaritas for 3 Euros. They served the best portions of Nachos and Guacamole because half the plate was filled with guacamole and the other of nachos. The Best.

…and then I learned about some UK bands that played some pretty good music, like The Joy Division and Metronomy.