Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Me parece hogar

How do the animal parts look today, Austin?

El Mercado Central makes me want an apartment and a kitchen and a grocery list. I want to buy things to make dinner here and take them back in one of those pull carts that everyone seems to have. I want to ask the old man behind the counter, barricaded by spiky artichokes and deep red sausage, how much he's asking for the fresh goat cheese. I want him to recognize me and give me the regular-customer-discount. I want to know all the Spanish words for all the different kinds of marine edibles. I want to know how to cook with the spices they offer here. I want to know which wines go with which slabs of meat. I want to eat baked goods bought here for breakfast, wrapped in brown paper and tied off with string. 

The top picture is of one of my favorite new hang-outs. Right on the way to the market, this cozy little café is always filled with people who are concentrating. Concentrating on the paper, El País or Lecante, and their café cortado. Concentrating on their company, leaning dangerously inward towards each other, with a pint of beer or a glass of wine. Concentrating on their problems, talking things out with the wizened bar tender. I concentrate on them. 

In exchange for a Friday without classes, we had to go as a class Sunday night to the big theatre in town, LYS, to see Celda 211. In America it seems, or at least where I am from, things are built out, as opposed to up. Valencia has no room for this, thus the theater is ten stories tall with about three movies playing on each floor. Rebecca and I convinced each other rather easily to get popcorn and a Coke, in order to get the entire movie experience. The coke had no ice, of course, but it was cold and the popcorn was good. This movie is a new action flick about a brand new police officer who gets intricately involved in a jail riot against his will. The riot starts while he is getting his orientation session, and he manages to stay alive for most of the movie by pretending to be a new prisoner. Spanish film is much more graphic than American film, which I was not expecting. I closed my eyes most of the film and learned many bad words. 

This afternoon we are going to the Museum of the Torros, which should also be pretty graphic. I have nearly finished Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises. I hope to get some visuals to match his poignant descriptions of the intense relationship Spain has with bulls and bull fighters. 


  1. Lovely prose and photos Caroline, thanks for sharing. I want to be there RIGHT NOW.