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|June 21-25, 2003 |
There was some nice art, but Fred said there was no portrait as beautiful as his
Well, Im leaving Madrid tonight and will arrive in Rome not tomorrow morning but the morning afterwards at 7 a.m. Its gonna be a long day and a half with four train switches and a good six hours of layovers. Oh well, it comes with the territory.
Have you guys ever heard or read those journals of people stranded, deserted, or in extreme conditions? They start off like this: Day 8, still no sign of help, havent eaten anything in three days, need to find food. You get the picture.
Well heres my version:
Day 9, still finding it necessary to take a shower on a three-day rotation. Have yet to put on deodorant, and Im determined to beat some of these Europeans at their own game.
Brad and Katherine have been real troopers about the whole ordeal although Brad has dropped a few hints in the past couple of days. (Katherine, I assume, is just too polite.) I appeased him today by taking a shower, but Im holding fast to the no-deodorant clause. Mother would be so proud!
Ive officially started my Art on Steroids tour.
In Madrid we went to the Escorial one day, which is a big palace with a similar concept as Versailles with tons, and I mean tons, of Spanish baroque art. The following day we went to the Prado in the morning for more baroque art including Velazquezand Las Meninas and plenty of others from him, Goya, and the list goes on. We took a break from Spanish culture and had lunch at Planet Hollywood right across the street. Since it was American prices in Europe, it really was as much as we would have paid anywhere else.
After lunch we went to another museum, the Thyssen Bornemisza, which used to be a private collection but Spain bought it for around $300 million in the early 90s. There we saw even more baroque art and a lot more: 19th century American art, impressionism, post-impressionism, cubism, and a bunch more isms. Anyway, it was a nice break from the baroque stuff.
Last night we went to a bullfight at the largest bullfighting arena in Spain. It was good. Wasnt very crowded because Real Madrid (the soccer team) had a huge game yesterday and everyone was there instead of the bullfight. It was pretty interesting.
Brad and I, in an attempt to truly experience Spanish culture, bought Spanish wine at the grocery store and drank it during the spectacle. The locals sitting behind us approved immensely and therefore explained the ins and outs of the sport and what was going on.
This morning we got up, drank some water, and went to yet another museum the Reina Sofia. This is home to Picassos famous mural la Guernica. Now, Ill admit that I think the Spanish artistformer member of the French communist party, and inventor of cubismis definitely an eccentric. Nonetheless, la Guernica was awesome. Probably not as impressive as Las Meninas, but still powerful and Im glad I saw it. This museum had mainly modern stuff. No more baroque art, which was good because I needed a break.
So anyway, Art on Steroids has only begun to pick up the pace because Rome, Florence and Venice back-to back-to-back will all be intense.
Its been fun to travel with Brad and Katherine, but Im also looking forward to seeing Italy by myself on my own schedule. They go back to the States tomorrow. Sarah Fouts (a fellow May graduate of Centre) and I are meeting up, probably in the Barcelona train station (which is a travelers nightmare because of the lines to get tickets). Well then visit Lauren Nicholson (a May graduate of Centre) in Seville. Ill have done Italy by then and we will go to more places in Spain, especially Pamplona, then up to France then back to Texas.
Madrid is hot!!! Every morning I have to dry off because I wake up in a wet bed from sweat. Its annoying but not too bothersome because it really isnt any hotter than Texas or Mexico, just less AC.
Thats about all for now.
Take care everyone,
T.J. '03 and Fred
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