Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Big Strike

Yesterday there was a general strike here in Spain. This picture was take in the corona plaza, Granollers. Two women began to yell and give the middle finger to the demonstrators wielding flags and microphones. It was mostly good humoured and many of the people were smiling. A friend and I were sitting in a bakery enjoying a sweet pastry when suddenly, at the sound of whistles, the blinds were pulled down, the shutters drawn and we were enveloped with secrecy. It was rather thrilling.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Jet Packs

Jett: If you could have anything in the world and a billion dollars, what would you have?
Jett: I'd have a jet pack.
 Albert: What's a jet pack?
 Jett: [Incredulously] Don't you know what a jet pack is?
 Albert: No.
 Jett: You know, its a back pack you wear that's like a rocket and you can fly.

Photo: Tiffany Jones (Bridge from Granollers to Canovelles, 2010

Sunday is Market Day in Canovelles

We bought some winter socks, and now stopping by for tapas in a local bar. Lovely sunny day too.

Wine Making in the Porxada

Today people of all ages had their shoes and socks off and were stamping on perfectly fine grapes, all in the name of wine making.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Waiting For The Bus in the Vilanova

Two teenager came to wait in the bus shelter, and guess what? They both said 'hola' AND made eye contact with me!

Waiting For The Bus in Granollers

There are two seats for people to wait for the bus. As one approaches the seats, the people stare with a blank face, or look beyond you. An older woman pushes her bottom in between two young people. Another day in Granollers.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mysterious Black Thing

We've been cleaning Jett's room and came across this black thing. It's strange, the appearance of a random 'thing' that seems to have to function. Hmm. Throw it out, or keep it in the bottom draw just in case?

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Diversity or Just Trying to Please Everyone?

This is a poster for a local night club. You see what they are offering, and just in case you're style of music is not catered for, you've got 'etc' which covers the 'misc' section also.

The End of The Math Book!

Jett had a huge amount of homework to do since coming back from holidays. Tonight, he's on his last page, and truly I feel for him. Albert has displayed excellent patience, and Jett has the reward of finally knowing what 3 plus 8 is. 

Shots on the House?

When I've been dining out with some Catalans they have asked the waiter, at the end of the meal, for a free shot. Its usually that yellow fluro stuff they call a 'digestive', but you can ask for anything. When I understood what was happening, I struggled with embarrassment. However it seems it is part of the culture of restaurants of the past. Some places say no. Some say yes, but grudgingly, and some are truly generous. It has become am interesting part of the meal for me. What will they say?


A topic of infinite detail. If you have a favourite recipe, please post/send it. Today, at La Mama, the waiter asked us if the Sangria needed something else. Well. Yes, it needs some more sweet. It just tastes like watered down wine. But, that's only because you asked. Thank you.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

Sushi Night!

You know we lived for 18 months in Japan when Jett was a baby. But Japanese food is still one of his hot favourites.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Parking Trouble in Granollers.

Its well known that its difficult to park your car in Granollers. This is our parking. Its 150 meters away from our apartment. Our apartment was made in the 70's, and they didn't make a car park for the block. So we have to hire a space in another apartment block.

Catalan Day

Today is 'The Day' in Catalonia. We're going to the science museum. At the moment, we're sitting at the corner bakery, and Albert spotted a 'starred' Catalan flag being hoisted.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Early Morning Coffee

I'm in cafe Saula, on Girona street. I had a Little Britain moment asking for a tallat. 4 times I tried to get the word out of my mouth before I gave in and said cortado. The coffee is good here, and relatively cheap. They also have a lovely little raisen bun I haven't seen in other coffee shops.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Oven Baked Vegetables with Sheep Cheese.

My current favourite snack. We always seem to have lots of vegetables left over, so I've started baking them in lots of oil, and keeping them in the fridge. Then, when I want a snack, voila!

Greasy Pole?

I was just innocently looking up a word in my dictionary, and I came across 'cucanya'. It says, in my dictionary, that it means 'greasy pole'. And they say Catalan is not a rich and varied language!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Commited to Studying Catalan.

Well, this time it seems I'm being dedicated. An hour or more of book study a day, and speaking Catalan at home in the evenings, Monday to Thursday. Its true I was set back when I was introduced to difficult verbs (all of them), but it seems I've conquered my blank mind. I also start every study session with two phrases. 1- I understand Catalan. 2 - I speak Catalan. And then a deep breath.

Hello and Goodbye.

I'm not sure if I've mentioned this. But when you pass people on the street you know, but have no intention of stopping for, you say 'goodbye', not hello. I find it difficult to get used to. Kind of like I'm being pushed along. I wouldn't stop anyway, but a quick 'adeu' doesn't give you choice, does it? Thanks to Marina, Adela and Albert for being the models for this photo.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Homework with Albert

I left the room for a moment, and this was what I found on my return. Instead of Albert helping Jett with his math, we have an impromptu air guitar lesson to Bad Medicine. Indeed, we are not amused.

First Day of School in Granollers.

Jett went back to school today. I saw a few children crying, but mostly there was hugging and smiles. School began a week earlier than usual. It seems Spain is going to add a weeks holiday somewhere in the year instead of having the usual THREE months holiday. Wow. Three months! Though they do have summer camps here, its true. Where you can do many specialised activities. So far, for Jett at least, so good.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Illegal Studies

I was talking to my son today about marketers and advertisers, and how some people spend several years learning how the human mind works so they can sell products more effectively, and he said 'but isn't that illegal?'

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Autumn sets in

Market day in Granollers. The first one of the autumn. Its a grey day, as if it knows its time to send some warmth down south.