In Puerto del Sol, Madrid
The wild break dancer
On his back
Passion for the night
In the Flamenco Cave
The flashing of the legs
The swirling of the skirts
The staccato beating of the feet
Hard on the floor
Driving the beating of the heart
The Dance of Passion
Looking forward to visiting Spain again to indulge the passion
Sitting below the Sierra Nevada and above the fertile plane of Granada
is The Red
The site chosen by the Romans for a fort
Bought to its glory by the Moors as Christian Europe languished in its Dark Ages
Bought into flourish by the Nasrid Sultans over 700 years
Then occupied by Ferdinand and Isabella
Driving Islam out or Spain and establishing themselves as the Catholic Kings
In the Palace, Isabella signed the orders for Columbus to sail in search of the Americas
The dawn of the Golden Age
The centre of old Granada
Overlooking the Albacain, the Arab quarter
Ransacked by Napoleon’s troops in 1882
Alhambra still stands magnificent even though losing its former glory.
3000 years old
the Spanish “Golden Years”
Gold and other trade from the Americas
Trading through its port
Building a flourishing city
Filled with the silver and gold
flowing from the Americas
Now a coastal tourist city
Port of ferries, cruise and cargo ships
old town and new
new ways and old
The wonderful passion of spain
I saw the Dutch as having a stoic inner strength as a result of the battle the with external forces.
The Spanish temperament is shaped by the battle with their own wild passion.
Separatists in the Basque country and Catalonia seeking their own expression.
Living in the shadow of Spain’s “Glory Years”.
“Glory Years” that spread Spanish culture to the Americas, Africa and distant corner so the world.
Especially in the Americas where the Hispanic culture is still strong.
As it shows on the Hispanic Day parade from Plaza de Mayor of the Hispanic groups.
So the passionate Spaniards celebrate with parades of national days and saint days.
With a 100 or more buglers and drummers leading the parade of the patron saint of Cadiz
But in many ways the flamenco dance captures the raw passionate energy of Spain
The wild swing or the body
The rapid fire stamping of the feet
The dancer lost in the raw energy of the moment
The wild expression of the inner passion.
- Parked outside the 12th century airbnb near Olot that was home for a couple of nights
The mountains of Catalonia are home to beautiful villages dating back to medieval times.
Villages built across Clifford tops
Still with ancient paths and trails through the forest
Villages that have stood millennia
Holding in their stony edifaces the history of Catalonia
The tale goes that James the 1st carried a golden shield when invading Catalonia
He was killed in battle
As he died his fingers dragged down shield leaving four bloodied stripes
The Catalonia flag four red stripes on a gold background.
Thanks Judith and Juan for being wonderful hosts and Juan for sharing the tale of the Catalan flag.
The roads here are made for riding
Coastal roads along the Cote Vermeille and the Costa Breva
Tight turns windswept by the katabatic winds rushing down from the mountains testing the riders skill
It’s about twisty mountain roads in the Pirineos Orientals on the rooftop of Spanish Catalonia
In about the winding deep gorges Pyrenees Catalanes
Tight rocky gorges
Roads for riding
This whole trip is a touch surreal
48 Moto Guzzi motorcycles shipped in containers from Melbourne
Then to Mandello De Lario to celebrate the marques 95th birthday before fanning out over Europe.
So the Salvador Dali museum in Figueres added a further element to surreal adventure.
The breadth and scale of the masters work is astonishing
With a truly surreal understanding of perspective
The installation enormous in scale, imagination and perspective.
The Mae West Bedroom installation for example. Each piece a artistic form
Then when viewed through a lens it is transformed into a new singular piece.
The installation in the central.gallery breathtaking in both scale and detail.
His work at the museum includes work in many media drawings painting in classical and surrealist styles, the installations, sculpture, still and moving picture.
Then the jewelry
Audacious and exquisite
And as surreal an anything else I was in Catalunya