Thursday, April 11, 2013

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The countryside of Morocco on the way from Chefchaouen featuring some houses, a checkpoint (this time the un-spiked variety), and the Rif Mountains. The only thing Chefchaouen doesn't have is the letter "i" aside from that you can get anything there.

 This man is wood crafting.
 We were told it was ok to take a picture of the bakery, unfortunately I took a photo before the man in stripes saw me. After he did see me and the camera he promptly hid for the rest of the picture takers.
 This was our guide in Chefchaouen, Morocco.
 This is the log used to heat a sauna, the furnace is reached by the soot filled staircase directly on the other side of Joe.
 Weaving some blankets this man is.
 This was the meat stew. The beef disintegrated at the touch, it it were almonds and prunes.
 Henna.


That's Africa on the other side of the bay as well as this side. To the left is the straight of Gibraltar and further on is Tarifa, Spain.

 The view from the hotel above. And the view of the hotel below.

 Breakfast!
 Group picture of the girls taken before arriving at Cueva de Hercules.

 If it were not obvious enough this is me riding a camel  dismounting was rather interesting since the animal must go through a process of sitting back down and is very stubborn. Technically it is a dromedory not a camel.

 Cueva de Hercules is a seacave. It was said that he made his when he fought a titan during the struggle and later made his throne here. We all know that's not true because he went to build Seville instead.
 A Mercedes Benz taxi with a Monster sticker in Morocco. Interesting
 My roommate in a tarboosh or fez

 Calamares frescos!
 Sandstone and some cobble. the sandstone erodes better.
 That's the northernmost point of Africa.
 We had to go through this skywalk to get to where the boat was to take us back.
So the kids in this picture above are playing soccer. They are barefoot. On this beach I found among other trash, some razor blades, jagged bits of plastic, and a dead rat. Soccer is something taken seriously.
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 Our escort out of the docks in Tarifa
 The straight

 I can't read the top but the bottom is in French because Arabic and French are the country's official languages.
 Construction in Tetuan maybe? I cannot remember it's probably Tanger though.
 Tanger
 Tanger

 RMD! there was also a FCB door but that's not important.
 This soup, it was delicious and it smelled like cinnamon.
 Cuoscous and chicken was rather good.
 a sweet tea made with a type of mint leave called Hierba Buena in Spanish. It's also used to make Mojitos
 This store was rather expensive even if you bargain correctly but here's some amazing carpet work.
 The view from Hotel Continental.
 Why right over there is where we got off the boat! The boat ride was very entertaining too, some people got motion sickness but I was walking around the whole time having a blast.
 People are seen on the side of the road hitchhiking, some of them are waiting for this obvious thing.
 A dam. This one did not provide hydroelectric power though (as I was told).

 That's a slump! The soil on the incline there just gave out and slumped.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

There is some trouble with the monarchy here in Spain. The Infanta Cristina has been accused of corruption and so has her husband, it seems they have been overcharging for events and keeping the leftovers. More may or may not be posted including better information and sources. So far here's one I could find before I have to leave for class: http://www.hellomagazine.com/royalty/2013040311890/king-juan-carlos-daughter-cristina-corruption/.

We go to Morocco tomorrow!

Monday, April 1, 2013

It rained for much of the week and many Pasos were not taken out. Those that were taken out were met by enormous crowds. Chairs and bleachers were set up to accommodate paying viewers, up to 100,000 seats. The Costaleros that carry the Pasos are underneath the floats and out of sight while in Malaga the Pasos are carried on Tronos and the weight is distributed to the carriers along poles that are extended in front and behind the Paso.

Malaga: http://fiestas.edreams.es/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/semana-santa-malaga2.jpg (google image search for semana santa malaga)

Seville: http://fotografias-sevilla.com/semana-santa/9117308.jpg

Elizabeth and her sister were also in town for Semana Santa and were able to attend the first bullfight of the year at the Real Maestranza. This bullring as falsely claimed by wikipedia is not actually the oldest bullring in Spain; that belongs to Ronda. Both articles claim that their bullring is the oldest but in Seville nobody claims that while Ronda does. This annoys me more than it should.

This weekend starting on Friday is the trip to Morocco and will be followed by a week of classes that leads to Feria.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

So it's been a while since the Lisbon post. It is now Semana Santa here and anywhere else it is celebrated I suppose.

I'm not doing anything in particular except for working on things that need to get done (papers, research, class registration). My roommate has is parents here in Seville and I just met them today. They are going to a flamenco show tonight. Most of out group is traveling somewhere, some took the Eurorail while others flew to their destinations. Some of the places being visited are Vigo in Galicia, Spain, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Dublin, and Italy.

Semana Santa here is marked by processions consisting of Nazarenos which bear the likeness of the KKK costumes. The KKK costumes stole their looks from the Nazarenos and from Catholicism. The Nazareno costume is derived from the uniform worn by the inquisitors during the holy inquisition according to some sources. The Nazarenos are accompanied by Penitentes, they wear similar costumes but without a structural cone in the hood. The Penitentes walk barefoot and carry a cross as if paying for some sin. Costaleros carry the Pasos (floats) the floats are heavy and of about 20 Costaleros each carries 40 Kilos or more. There are two Pasos per procession, one of the Virgin Mary (this one is the most important) and one of Jesus Christ. All processions need to pass in from the the Cathedral (the Cathedral of Seville is the largest Gotich cathedral in the world and the third larges Christian church bested only by St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican and St. Paul's Cathedral in London.