Mar 26, 2009

Spring Blossom

I took this on Sunny Sunday in Retiro.

I'm finally getting the chance to see Paris in the spring... I'm going to Paris for the weekend so I won't be around to post new photos and whatnots but I'll be back blogging next weekend.  My brother and I are staying in Montmartre and I'm really looking forward to wandering around this Parisian village. The forecast calls for rain so I also hope to spend some time visiting the Museum D'orsay. 

So stay tuned for my view of Paris.

Au revoir!

Mar 22, 2009

Athena Grey-eyed watches over Madrid

These photos were taken by me on the rooftop of Circulo de Bellas Artes. This bronze statue of the Greek Goddess of strategy in war and her symbolic wise owl was created by sculptor Juan Luis Vassallo Parodi (1908–1986).

Mar 21, 2009

Metrópolis Madrid

A view of Edificio Metrópolis amidst a jumble of buildings and a Warhol-inspired ad for Almodóvar's latest movie captured by me from the rooftop of El Círculo de Bellas Artes. Located at famous the corner of Gran Via and Alcala, the Metropolis building was designed by Jules and Raymond Février in a French, Romanesque style and inaugurated in 1911. The gold you see on the dome is a product of 30000 leaves of 24 Carat gold.

Mar 20, 2009

Chariot Riders Galloping Over Madrid Rooftops at Sunset

This photo was taken by me on the rooftop of Circulo de Bellas Artes. These chariots sit atop the Banco Bilbao building on Calle Alcala. The view of Madrid from this vantage point is absolutely stunning. I've got more photos to come.

Mar 19, 2009

Bellydancing for street kids

Last Saturday, some Spanish friends invited me along to a benefit concert in Guardarrama. The concert was held in a majestic hillside villa owned by a philanthropist lady doctor named Maria. Alalay is a home for street children in Bolivia. An American woman  blogged about her experiences volunteering at the house if you're interested in reading about the children and how the Alalay helps them.

The concert consisted of various types of performances of varying degrees of skill and talent. I saw my first live harp performance early in the night. I was mesmerized by the lady's nimble, agile fingers plucking at the strings. The second performance wasn't very skilled - her aria made us all cringe a little. The third, was a Brazilian guitarist singer/songwriter and his sidekick. His amp was turned up so loud, his singing made us wince in pain. But I suppose I'm being a little 'tiquis miquis'. It was after all for a worthy cause and the tickets were a mere 5 euros. 

The bellydancers were friends of my Spanish friends and the reason why we attended the concert. I have to admit that I'm no expert on bellydancing. I've seen a show or two live but most of my experience comes from the videos of famous hard-bodied bellydancers I've seen at my local kebap shop. These ladies had shapely bellies (not unlike my own) and I found I liked their soft movements. They weren't encumbered by our pop-culture cookie-cutter mould and showed us that graceful and sexy women come in all sizes. Plus they looked like they were having a lot of fun and that mood infected the audience who applauded and cheered with more enthusiasm than I had heard all night. 

We left the salon after the bellydancing so I didn't have an opportunity to see any of the other performances. We had already been sitting on the metal folding chairs for 3 hours and that seemed long enough so we abandoned our coveted front row seats, wandered around the enormous terraced garden then ate sandwiches by the pool. By the time we left, the villa was packed with people. The benefit concert was obviously a success and would continue long into the night without us.

Mar 14, 2009

Flowers for the dead

This statue, on Calle del Príncipe de Vergara, is dedicated to the victims of terrorism.  A memorial service was held here on March 11th in memory of the 5th anniversary of the Madrid train bombings. 

Mar 13, 2009

March Lion

This photo was taken by me in Retiro Park.

Spring is finally here! All the pink blossom trees tell me so. March may have come in like a rainy, windy lion but it's marching away in a glow of  green with a shock of pink.

Mar 8, 2009

100% Control x 3

Calle Olmo street art captured from 3 angles by me. I love how the severe angle and blur in the middle photo creates an image of a single body instead of two. 

Mar 7, 2009

Lavapiés Cows

There is currently an exhibition of cows in Madrid. The CowParade has been to many cities world wide. In fact, I've seen similar projects in Canada, bison on parade in Edmonton, life-size bovine in Calgary and bears in Winnipeg.
These two are my barrio cows. They are moved into different random positions in the plaza every few days by unknown hands but this is my favorite position yet. Vacas mona en amor. I've heard rumors that there used to be 3 cows in the plaza, but one was stolen the first day and later beheaded as a wall trophy. But this isn't the true story. The real story is that  'Albertina Pinturina' the cow on the bottom, was unbolted and stolen but a barrio local saw the thieves in action and followed them. The police were called the next day and 'Albertina Pinturina' was rescued from the thieves' apartment, head intact.

Happy Saturday!

Mar 6, 2009

Laundry Day

After a week of rain, miserable rain, the sun is out and about and so are the clothes. This is a view of La Corrala in Lavapiés. 

Mar 1, 2009

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