Monday, 27 February 2017

"The curious incident of the dog in the night-time" by Mark Haddon

I saw it as a play first and it was great - all actors staped on stage thoughout. Somewhat two years later, a colleague brought it to me because she thought I would like it. I did! It underlines how different the world can be for someone who is autistic and who is not. It also made me very sad that Christopher could not hug his parents and that when we act in certain ways and think it is natural, it is not at all like that for other people. Like when Christopher says, I didn't say anything to my father when he was crying because when I am sad I want to be left alone. Or that an ordinary street with many signs can be information overload, because which sign is the most important? 

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Carneval half a week!

 From Saturday to Tuesday people dress up and dance through the cities. More popular in some places than other. In one of my schools, I was a heart on Friday. 
 With glitter, I specifically asked for it and I was the only one. 
 The hats are reused annually, the heart is mine for forever. 
 Most teachers tried to dress in black to show the red better. 
The rest of the school were flags. Here you see Spains and the world map (from behind, heart in hands on a sky blue background) enter the gymnasium for collective dance.
 The next day, a friend brought wigs and a tiara and I became Minnie mouse princess. Some children expected candy of me?
 This is the carneval in Cartagena that takes at least 1.5 hours to watch from beginning till end.
 Glitter, lights, feathers, semi-nakedness. I was very tempted to participate some year. Which movements are the least exhausting to repeat for two hours?
 Butterflies, snowflakes, hearts of cards, half the jungle
 and swans.
To sit and watch on front row, some clever restaurants had come up with the idea to make it cost 20 € for a table and two chairs reservation. We were cleverer and went somewhere else. And then we went to an Indian restaurant to celebrate a thing and it was fun to see nuns and vampires and other people there as the most natural of things.

Friday, 24 February 2017

New Words as of 2016/2017

Thunderclap - internet-organised activity that many people do together at the same time.

Karoshi (Jap) - to commit suicide because of overwork.

Dylanman (Swe) - a man that admires Bob Dylan [and would fervently argue about how great Dylan is at any time].

Crosshair/hårkors- the round mark with a cross in the middle that helps you to center an object seen through binoculars or a modern rifle.

Droller - those small painting on the side of a page and in the middle of big letters in old books, Gothic times.

Flapper - you know the typical photo of a woman from the 1920's with a low-waisted dress? This is the word for it, slightly vulgar.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Gone local.

 When I was in the mountains (lucky me, before the rain that casted for "Noah's ark" came to Calasparra), I spotted a cool bridge. Was that for trains? I decided to go there as soon as possible. 
 That moment was on Tuesday 6th of December, a Spanish holiday. When I bicycled down the asphalted hill, I remembered something very similar from my childhood, on the countryside of Hölö in Sweden. No people, an occasional car and lots of asphalt to have fun with. 
 Water on the ground is a rare thing here, mind you. When some German exchange teachers came, they wondered if this was a channel. No, it's a river!
Clearly, a lovers' place.
 The metalwork is from 1918 and is getting rusty (and scary...). The road is closed off, only accessible to pedestrians. 
 Ah, how a little water can make you happy. 
 The amusing thing is that I have passed by here, but only at night and driving, so not until I went hiking did I discover this place. More hiking to the people!  

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

I think this is an excellent ad.

Outside a pharmacy, it underlines how difficult most womens' life is: such a thing as comfort and beauty in a pair of shoes is rare sight. And why is such an uncomfortable shoe part of many uniforms? A mystery. I have even seen female police wear heels in court during the Puss Riot trial. I doubt the female officers have undertaken particular training for running and catching suspects while wearing high heels. 

Sunday, 19 February 2017

The city comes alive

 Had somebody told me the trains come here once a week, I might have believed them. It is so abandoned around here that the upper half of a tractor is missing for no reason. 
 This could have been a grand café once.
 With chairs around the tree, nice ladies with complicated handbags and their dogs drinking coffee. 
 At least twice a day there is a Renfe train, in Madrid or Cartagena direction.
 To come here, there is a road of two kilometers so straight, that it looks like the cars are not moving when they head right at you. No way that I would be riding that monotonous way back.
 I could clearly see the city from here and consulted Google maps for a moment. Basically, I couldn't get lost, nor matter how unused the path seemd. Rightly so, there were cars! Most strange experience was to see a man with maybe five dogs. Three of them were tied to the car and kept up with his speed; two ran behind and I imagined their teeth clenching my juicy thigh, but they decided to not get behind, even though they surely contemplated an alternative dinner. 
 And all roads lead to river Segura.
 Near which, of course, the lush green as the forclock of teenage boys.
 And acres of farmed land strech out with pride; this is where the famous Calasparra rice is cultivated. 
 And there is an artificial lake! To practice canoing. 
 Mystery house. No roof, all holes, not even a bench to sit. Anyone knows what it might be? It looks finished. 
And quite a few bridges with a semi-fake waterfall ended this slightly dangerous trip. For about one kilometer, I had to share space with vehicles going at 90 km/h the least. Everybody survived!

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Letters, come o' come!

 I am no philatelist (or deltiologist, that is a postcard collectioner), but begin to view some of the stamps as small pieces of art.
Nature, beautiful cities, delicious food - they all tell a story. So do some envelopes. I normally throw envelopes away in cold blood. The most important is the content! But some pearls can stay.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Road of Tapas

Tapas competition in Cehegín is still on! I decided to try out some of the most delicious-looking tapas in the competition booklet. FIVE places in two hours and no rush!
 Not a winner but fun with fried artichokes. 
 Basil ice cream on a bed of crumbs. Here the owner introduced me to a British couple, of which 50% thought I was from England and when I denied it, from Spain. 
 A dish I would never have guessed I would like! Jupiter of squid ink and mashed... rice?
As you might have deduced, each bar or restaurant competes with a special contestant. Usually two, unless it is a cocktail. One place has kept all of its contest dishes from the past years and offers 8-10 special tapas.
I found out the latter in an art gallery on my way, where they were preparing prizes for the carneval next week. I also learned that the word for "chicken" also could mean "drug".
This sauce is fan-tastic. The pan cute. But too little meat, and the potatoes - I have never seen such a shape. 

Thursday, 16 February 2017

In my neighbourhood

 I took the bike while the sun still was up to the oldest almond trees in the area. Ninety at least. And there were surprisingly many bikers, seven, of which one (1) styled and two (2) were professional bikers, in lime green tights (and a little black) and all.
 Almond trees are both pink and white, and the only way to tell they are not abricots is that the abricot trees don't have flowers yet. And they are more white.
 Up on a hill, I tried to catch the mountain saga on camera. Not yet, I really have to read through the instruction manual soon.
 Then my friend came out from the house nearby. I waved from the hill, where I was catching the sun.
 "Why didn't you call me?" So we went to his house. 90% of what you see here, he built himself!
The birds were holding short concerts and solo performances, just choose the stage (tree) of your preference. Air was 16 degrees, FYI.
The dogs were very curious. Normally, countryside dogs bark at you because there is not much else to do. The oldest blonde stood on her back legs and almost scratched my arms, in a friendly but heavy way. She is seven human years, is that how it is counted? Ond year in total.