new slang

30 07 2007

I started a strange list of things to do or make when I get home. It began with food but is now turning into other activities and will soon become vague ideas such as “walk more.”

1. Eat some good rice. 2. Make some good deviled eggs (good as in, sin atún.) 3. Play racquetball. 4. Listen to the Shins.

I just added that last one after hearing “New Slang.” It has been a long time since I’ve heard the Shins. Fall 2004, to be exact.

bilbao guggenheim bilbao; i can only assume this is by jeff koons. bilbao, bilbao, park bilbao, fountain in the mirror, i have a siamese twin.

I uploaded a few more photos from Bilbao and plan to upload a few more in the near future. I took a total of 468 photos on Friday, about 400 in Bilbao and then the rest back in Burgos since it was the first time I was out in the city when it was dark; it is never dark any earlier than 10:30pm. I uploaded a few of those as well and would love to take more night photos if I get a chance to before we leave. Only 5 more days and so much more studying to do!

As for Bilbao, I loved it and should probably just let the photos speak for themselves. I will note, however, that to me, the most appealing aspect was that it was a place that did not seem afraid of creativity, likely because of the revival the city encountered after the addition of the Guggenheim museum. The Guggenheim’s external artworks also feel like a part of the city, not just the museum. (I was the nerd that introduced the group to “Puppy” by Jeff Koons and actually knew to look around and find “Maman” by Louise Bourgeois.) One of the photos I have waiting to be resized and uploaded is of the Zubizuri bridge, a pedestrian bridge down the river from the Guggenheim and one of the examples that I feel is representative of this somewhat avant-garde attitude the city possesses. Something that certainly needs further analysis but is nonetheless interesting. Medieval cities like Burgos are great; Bilbao was unique.

arch of santa maria


paper writing

29 07 2007


I finally went to Bilbao on Friday, two days ago, and it quickly became my new favorite city. Nevermind what my old favorite city was… because I don’t know. However, before I can elaborate on the trip, I must write a paper about the piece seen above from the Museo de Burgos, seen below.

museo de burgos

simple things

19 07 2007


Spanish Chinese food. Or maybe it is Chinese Spanish food. Either way, we ate there the other night. Not bad and certainly interesting. I finished writing out my postcards there and finally sent them out.

In general, I like to take time to observe things when I am doing something, even if it is a trip to the supermarket, or here in Spain, the supermercado. I finally went there by myself for the first time yesterday and had to chance to stroll up and down every aisle. I like noticing both the subtle and not-so-subtle differences in products, prices, presentation, et cetera. It may seem silly but I find it interesting to treat unexpected places as if they were museums.  There is a lot out there to be learned.

Yesterday we visited las Huelgas monastery, I don’t really have photos of it because photography is forbidden at almost all museums and tourist places here, it seems. I did get one good photo before they told us that it was forbidden though.  monastery

el camino de santiago

15 07 2007

camino de santiago

Before coming here, I honestly didn’t know what el Camino de Santiago was… in Burgos, there are shells on the ground like the one above that are there for the pilgrims, to guide them along their route to Santiago de Compostela. I’ve actually seen people with backpacks walking through here on their pilgrimage. Burgos is about halfway through Spain on the way there. In front of the cathedral in Burgos is a sculpture of a resting pilgrim (who for some odd reason appears to be doing the pilgrimage sans clothing.)

pilgrim sculpture

cathedral ceilings

5 07 2007

Picture 084

Picture 101 Picture 095 Picture 029 Picture 056
We visited the Burgos Cathedral yesterday and although everything about it was so intricately detailed, the ceilings are what drew me in the most. Gold altars that almost reach the ceiling, carved workwork and metal, paintings… and almost all of it was in very good shape. Built from the 1220s into the 1500s, it is younger than Notre Dame but still made it look far less impressive. I am so amazed by the art and architecture that comes out of inspiration by religion. Really, if people weren’t motivated to build these things for something they believed in, something so much greater than themselves, whether it is power or religion, would humans have ever done this? My opinion is that they wouldn’t have. I think they need to be motivated by something more and something beyond themselves.

Picture 157


4 07 2007

airplane above spain

I made it, I’m in Spain. The flight already seems like it was a long time ago but it was just Sunday/Monday. It is Wednesday. Being in a foreign country makes me lose any concept of time I might have. Burgos is wonderful so far. It is weird not knowing much Spanish at all… today in class we had to list all of the Spanish words we knew, so I did. Then we had to total it. I had 20, and when she asked how many I had to say “twenty” and not “veinte” because the word for twenty was not one of the twenty I knew.

Also, at meals, when they ask what kind of yogurt I want (rather than just giving me a random one which they also sometimes do) I’ve been saying “piña” because it is the only fruit I know! It’s ok though, I don’t mind pineapple. They have some funky yogurt flavors here! With lunch they gave me one that was orange and chocolate! Yum! It’s like I’m at home eating Platter’s orange chocolate only I’m in Spain and it’s in yogurt…

I’ve been having some interesting computer troubles and I only have access to photos from one camera (I brought two with me). So although we went to the Burgos Cathedral today, here’s a totally unrelated photo of a Spanish couple in one of the many lovely parks in Burgos.

park in burgos