Catalonia, one of the Spains with Barcelona as capital. The border used to be quite a way over the Pyrinee into France.
Round the 1500’s, Catalonia was a mighty empire that stretched all the way to Greece. Today after years of oppression by a central regime in Madrid they have home rule in many affairs.
Gaudì figurehead of Catalan modernism and his Sagrada Familia is probably the most well known son of the region. He claimed that the mediteranian people own the image, the northerners may lay claim to fantasy, but the image belongs to the south. Interesting assertion really as he seems quite well acquinted with fantasy.
The director of the school of architecture said ‘ today we bestowed this academic title either on a genius or an idiot, time will tell’ when Gaudì qualified.
Strange that people feel these concepts are mutualy exclusive..
But let’s not forget Montseral Caballé, who can forget Baaarcelona, with Freddie Mercury?
By the way, did you know Freddy was Parsi? People for Persia who moved toIndia some time ago. Fire worshippers after Zoroaster. The first great Asian pop star. Hy was born in Zanzibar.
But off course you knew that..
Your average Catalan is taller than the rest of Spain and apparently they have a way of tilting their heads to the side when they are listening. I see a siamese cat..
On my way from the airport to the hotel, I got lost. All went well, I found the bus and paid my Quenta e quenta 5 euro 50 , got off the bus at the Plaça Catalunya and started looking for the hotel. I know I had to go down the Ramblas but I must have taken a wrong turn somewhere, two ladies I asked for directions took one look at my bags and warned me not to walk in that area after dark. I was to go back to the Ramblas post haste and go over to the other side where the old town is.
On my way I found the Lycee (where Montserat did her training) and made enquiries at the little ship.
It was my first day in Spain and I hadn’t spent a lot of time in Europe. To this day I remember the pride with which the girl told me, no, she speaks Catalan, she is Catalan. Up till then I thought it was just a story of some historic situation. But no, they are very much a nation and proud of the heritage as well as their language.
In the region typically you see three languages, Spanish, Catalan and French. In Cataln it is parlo vir I speak, somewhere between the Spanish hablo and the French je parle sort of..
The other half of Catalonia is off course in France. Not many people there speak Catalan any more. Too many French kings telling them they are FRENCH I suppose.
But still they have a nationalistic feeling and Canigou, a mountain in the Pyrinee is a symbol of national unity.
Hope you enjoyed this one and to see you again soon!