Thursday, February 16, 2012

La musica de Españaaaa

Not really, because I'm preeeeetty sure this dude is from Portugal (and they are NOT SPANISH and will let you know(Just as if someone who is CATALAN absolutely will not say they are SPANISH (Even though Catalunya is part of Spain........)))
The Spanish here....they are obsessed with this song.  You can go to no bar nor discoteca without hearing it.  You cannot turn on the TV without hearing it.  

So, I thought I'd give you a little taste of the sounds of Spain (apart from all the American music and artists they listen to here, which is a lot)

It's pretty catchy.
Apparently it means something about a girl walking by smiling....?
No idea!
There's even a dance that goes with it!
(Written tutorial below)

At the chorus....
Wait 2 beats
Fan your face 4 times
Point right finger, then left
Hip Thrust/Elbow Pull
Point right finger, left
Hip Thrust/Elbow Pull (x2)
(Random gratuitous finger pointing is both allowed and encouraged)

Now you can all dance in the true spirit of a Spanish teenager.


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Oh the things you learn...

Sorry guys.  I know I'm horrible at updating!  I'll try doing more frequent but shorter's probably kind of a marathon to read through these long things anways...

Basically for the last couple of weeks I've been doing school and learning a lot about the history of Barcelona and Catalonia in general!  One of my classes is really interesting because it actually adds context to some of the culture and reasons why things are the way they are here.
(For example, how the Madrid/Barca futbol rivalry is about much more than the sport)

Entrance to L'Ovella Negra where our 'RA' arranged a meeting for people in our neighborhood!
Me and a beer at L'Ovella Negra! 
And then we watched the Barcelona v. Madrid game at the BIG L'Ovella Negra.  SO MANY PEOPLE (this was only 1 room!)
Watching the match with the ladies! 
We went to a display of work by Claret Serrahima, an artist from Barcelona.  He uses his impression of the city and then reflects it in his pieces.  This is a French Bulldog displayed in light.  I thought it was very fitting since there are SO MANY of them here!  (And I'm obsessed with them.  There is a Frenchie named Ike somewhere in my futureeee)

No big, just some pig legs at the supermercat.  This is a totally normal thing.  Also, all the markets smell like fish because they have SO MUCH fresh seafood sitting out to buy.  Lots of shrimp, and I've even seen a WHOLE OCTOPUS.  Appetizing, right?

This is my super fabulous Spanish cell phone.  Ya'll can't call me on it but you CAN marvel at the ancient texting technology....ohhhh how I miss my iPhone :(

In Spain a 'Bikini' is not something you wear, it is this delicious heavenly concoction.  Aka, basically a grilled cheese. But this one was SO GOOD because that melty queso is Brie (mmmmmm brieeee) and there was fresh tomato on it from the market and...I was starving because I hadn't eaten breakfast this day.  In the background you can see some potatoes.  SPANISH PEOPLE LOVE POTATOES.  I don't understand it.

The inside of the little cafe where I had my (delicious) Bikini!  V.  Moroccan vibe going on up in here.  Looove this place!  

A cathedral designed by Gaudi (I think......) at sunset!  This is on the walk to the History Museum of Catalunya in El Gotica, the 'old' part of Barcelona!  Muy bonita siiiiiii
(This is also the day and around the time I was developing a horrible painful blister on my left heel.  Owwww)
I went to the History Museum of Catalunya and learned about the 'history' of the region.  This was for a class and my professor challenged us to think on the ways the museum presents and manipulates the ideas of history, culture, and heritage.  Very interesting. 
The museum was in an old port warehouse.  The arched ceiling and red brick are very typical to Catalan buildings.

Really old stuff.
My rather dashing professor Xavi (pronounced Chavi) learning us some facts.

What a house looked like when the Romans were occupying Barcelona!

Apparently in school they leave out a good 500 years of the history of Catalunya here because they refuse to acknowledge the area was heavily under the influence of Arab/Islamic culture.  They instead attempt to identify strongly with the Romans and with Christian influence.  This still has an effect on the culture of Barcelona!

Me chilling on an awesome horse in the museum.  Yeaaaaaaa

How medieval!

Dead guy.  This is supposedly depicting the peasant uprisings in Barcelona.
(The trip was rich on info, light old stuff and pretty stuff)

Mmmm.  International influence is amazing.  Here I'm eating a frankfurt on a baguette with white cheese in an Irish restaurant in Spain.  BAFFLING.  This sandwich was a little less than amazing....but I needed foooood (and it was relatively cheap for here)
Also, I bet you didn't know the Romans carved a statue of my dad, because obviously they did!

Ciao for now!!  I prooooomise the Valencia trip will be up as soon as I get a camera cord!  (Technology problems uhhhhhhhhh)  I would say enjoy the cold in the states but it's fairly cold here too!  (The darn cold front from Siberia won't leaveeeee! (sounds so exotic, right?))  

I also have more stuff but I'm tired of typing so look for that to come.......sometime.  Haha

Cheers!  Barcelona is almost as exciting as The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!.....almost haha jk)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Oh my Gaudi!

Over the weekend I went to Parc Güell with a bunch of people.  It's a park up on the mountain in Barcelona and was designed by Gaudi.  If you want to read up on it more, go HERE.  (Apparently one of my friend's host parents have a relative that knew Gaudi and lived in one of the houses!)
To get there we had to basically climb up a mountain
Good thing they have escalators for us lazy American tourists!
(Yes that's my beautiful face)
View from the top of the park!
Up in the mountainous area of Barcelona!
This was a big monument that you could climb up in the park!
 One of the things you have to be really wary of in Parc Güell is pickpockets.  Several people got their bags stolen or even cut open by them!  
The group of girls I went to the park with!  This is the main common area of the park.
Detail around the outside of the main plaza in the park!  There were mosaics like this everywhere around the park!
This is a building designed by Gaudi with the city behind it.  The design very much reminds me of Dr. Seuss
Not the best picture, but this is the plaza held up by columns underneath!
And there was a guy singing and playing his guitar!  On the ceiling are several very colorful mosaics depicting different things.
Beautiful green park!
Group picture again!
Add caption
Another of Gaudi's buildings

A different view of the 'Dr Seuss' building

The girls!  (Kristina, Andrea, Ashley, and Me)

And this is the front of the park!
There was much more to walk around/explore but we were all starving so we went and ate at a little cafe.  Since it's free and not too far away I'm probably going to go back sometime soon to look around more!  It was a beautiful day and a beautiful place to go!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ay Dios Mio!

Ok, so if I don't just do a picture post I'll never get up to date with posting what's happening recently!
Feel free to ask any questions etc about these because I'm going to try and do it with minimal typing (I'm lazy and I have homework ok...don't judge my subpar blogging skills!).

As with the last post these are all from my iPhone and stolen from friends' Facebooks because Canon still has yet to get back to me about my
Pigeons everywhere!
Un bocadilla con chorizo y queso!
The uh, 'lava lamp' building.... 
Building where we had our orientation.  Juxtaposition of technology w/ a building a couple hundred years old....
Els Quatre Gats, famed hangout of Pablo Picasso at the turn of the last century.

Un cafe solo

Arc de Triomf de Barcelona
Arc de Triomf
Bird at Parc de la Ciutadella
Monument at Parc de la Ciutadella
Parc de la Ciutadella 
Gaudi building/museum?
Cathedral by Gaudi 
Street in Gotica Antigua

Building with 'modern' addition
La noche 
Ashley talks to the taxi drivers en espanol
Little bar with american sports teams decorations
At Apolo (Spanish discoteca)
Taking the metro
Sangria at L'Ovella Negra (The Black Sheep)
Razzmatazz to see DJ Diplo
Dancing & energizing at Razzmatazz 
Free 'fire shot' at Sutton (they literally lit the area around the shots on fire)

Beautiful sunset over Barcelona!
The next post will be more cohesive, I promise.