Saturday, April 25, 2009

hawked and happy

i post with word has been along time coming. sorry for punking out on blog updating, i hope to go back and explain the trips those last sets of pictures are from.

on to the string of positive events that began with hair clippers...

my conversation teacher let me borrow her clippers and with the help of a hair cutting novice i now sport my badger hawk again. its a very refreshing change.

received an incredible book in the mail and read savored it over two days.

i shared a meal and a movie (in spanish without subtitles!) with a canadian couchsurfing couple. because they are from Quebec spanish is easier than english, so i was pleased to find myself in animated spanish conversation for a good few hours.

there is an excellent arabic tea house here in ronda that was the setting for a friday night memory share.

today, i finally made it to a beach. it is not swimming weather, and actually it was rather cold and impressively windy. however, it was better in my opinion because no one was on the beach. i walked along the sand in the Mediterranean sea out to a rocky pier where the wind accosted me like a long lost lover. i stood out there for half an hour or so, just soaking up the positive energy. it was by far my favorite part of the day.

however, post-pier i found a Dalí statue garden! "elefante cosmico" is my new favorite Dalí piece. randomly, there was a bonsai tree museum in Marbella, so set out to find it. it was more of a walled in garden in the middle of a nice park, which i explored while waiting for the siesta hour to finish and the museum to re-open. bamboo really can grow just about every where. the museum housed some very impressive trees. the oldest was 450 yrs. old, with two 400 yr.old ones close behind. there was an excellent variety of types and ages from all over the world. i was the only one there so i indulged myself to converse with the trees about the history they had lived through.

i forgot my camera, which is bad luck for you guys but good for me because i ended up drawing all the things i found astounding.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

only a link

here is a link to the pictures i uploaded because i can not get them on the bolg as static photos or as side shows.

p.s. the internet and i are in an eternal battle

the photos i am intending to share in this post correspond with two adventures.

the most recent of the two was a trip to Sevilla, the capital of Andalusia. i went with a group of students and we visited a disturbingly beautiful church. disturbing because i had just seen "las fantasmas de Goya" so i had the Spanish Inquisition on my mind. this church was originally a mosque, as are most of the churchs in Andalusia, and was definitely a place of power during the Inquisition. my strange way of recognizing the thousands of people that died by touching the small locked doors that lead to an untold somewhere. this church also housed the burial monument of Christopher Columbus. i still dont know how to feel about that. i have to confess part of me idealizes a history where the peoples of the Americas continued their way of life and progressed to an unknown present, with out being conquered and western powers claiming these lands. the photos highlight the awesomely tall tower. after the church there was park traipsing and plaza visiting, which ended with a glass of wine in the small Jewish barrio. Hillel, i want you guys to know i told stories of your awesomeness during our sharing of a drink.

the adventure before Sevilla, was an attempted camping trip in the mountains surrounding me. i went with jim, a 52 year old teacher from CA, who actually is most often my travel companion, when i have one. we were heading to Jimera de Libar, but got caught up in conversation and missed our stop. thus, we spent our first day and night in Cortes de Frontera. it was old man camping, so at Jims request we went to a campground. it felt very strange to pay to sleep on the ground, but i wanted company. so we made camp and headed out to find a trail head for a day hike. the Spaniards we encountered, including the tourist info folks just looked at us strangely and re-recommended that we spend our day in the "white village" with the rest of the tourists. we ended up just pointing at a mountain and finding a way up, which included much trespassing and fence surmounting. it was a beautiful hike, with old some walls hidden in goat pastures, freedom twisted in to one of the barbed wire fences and a surprise skull formed from stones in a field that we viewed from the top of our designated peak. we transformed the skull into a cat pirate for the next travelers. i only took a photo of the skull... it seemed better that way.

well that night was not filled with much sleep since i was only optimistically over my sickness, not actually recovered. we managed to pack up camp minutes before a heavy rain storm and spent the morning in the cafeterria, which boasted all you can eat breakfast for 2 euro. ha. in spain that equals all you can eat toast with olive oil or jam and coffee. but the spaniards are serious about thier morning toast, and i had to fight to get my 2 euro´s worth. i ended up cutting up a tomato i had with me and ate four tomato sandwiches to sooth my conscious for spending money on food i could have obtained for free. the rain stopped and we headed to Jimera de Libars. this campground was really awful, i cant even pretend and once again the trails we had been told about did not exist. this trek up the mountain was short lived because the whole way was full of fierce brambles sporting inch long thorns. also i had woken up with a toothache that got progressively worse and morphed into a full on tooth infection and ear infection. lets just say i didnt even try to sleep that night since daggers in your head are less comfortable when laying down.

i returned to ronda the next morning at 7am, which was the fist available train. i enjoyed a socialized medical care system and was full of antibiotics and pain meds that i was not allergic too in a 1 hour flat. the next few days were spent sleeping and chewing soft food.

worry not im better now. and as a whole enjoyed the camping adventure.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Saturday, April 4, 2009

we artists are important

today i experienced time in a grand and humbling way.

i visited la cueva de la pileta, which was surprisingly large even though we only toured the small section open to the public. we were in the cave for about an hour. it houses beautiful rock formations in made brilliantly colorful by the mineral deposits. (i knew the types but currently my brain is powered off)

there are some incredible Paleolithic and neolithic cave drawings, one that is unique is a large fish with a seal inside. the guide said that they think these people were part of the first group that crossed the straights from Africa.

a met a German kid who was biking Spain, and we laughed over how we were so impressed over the cave drawing that were estimated to be 2.5 million years old when that amount of time would measure only a small part of the towering stalagtights and stalagmites.

it was a a good day.

however now i am rather sick. i hope this post has some linguistic integrity because i cant think. the combination of my head swimming with sick and this person sitting next to me yelling in an unrecognizable language make any thoughts slow and jumbled.

i made fire cider and i am felling better than 2 hours ago, i hope by tomorrow my head and throat will have cleared.