Alright guys. As promised, here’s a picture heavy post to make up for no pictures on the last one. I know how much you guys like the werid stuff posts too! This is stuff from generally walking around but most of it is from the Mega Don Quijote in Shibuya. It’s part grocery store, part souvenir shop, but pretty much ALL weird. It’s awesome. Let’s start off with a bang, shall we? (Might need to warn you with a NSFW tag here…)
I said I’d do it, and I’m doing it. Two years ago I took my first trip to Japan. If you’ve been within earshot of me between then and now then you know that Japan ruined everything for me. The experience there was so great that every other country I have been to has paled in comparison. I’ve never felt so safe, appreciated, respected, and awestruck than I have in Japan. I’ve made it to my hotel after a 28 hour travel day. Wanna hear how that went? It went fine! Mostly. First, this didn’t feel like a normal international trip. A normal international trip prep includes but is not limited to; extra restless sleep, general crankiness at home, staring off into the distance after short circuiting about how much there is to do before I leave, not leaving the house for several days so that I can get some good quality worrying in there (I at least get to pet the cats), tears, etc. Oh yes, it’s a carnival at the Rischards household.
Hey guys! I keep promising that I’ll post my frugal travel tips and here they are! Finally!
It’s my annual trip to The World Makerfaire in New York and I have several things to write about. Since the Faire is located at the New York Hall of Science in Flushing Meadows (you know… the place where the climactic alien spaceship scene in Men in Black was filmed) I stay in Flushing. Flushing is heavily populated by several Asian cultures which makes me a happy, happy girl. I have covered all the major food groups: The bubble tea group, ramen group, sushi group, and dim sum group.
SPAIN. 90 DAYS. IN MY POCKET, BITCH! Let’s get this out of the way, Spain: Caught a cold, got my wifi pick pocketed, lost my voice, bed bugs, pink eye, caught another cold, acquired a stalker. Also, living in a residency, you’re basically living for a significant period of time with a bunch of strangers. Every time I meet my new housemates my internal voice is always chanting, “Please be cool, please be cool, please be cool…” I only had an 85% success rate with this method this time but you know what? I freaking did it. Including a few random pics from my last few days!
Welp. I feel great. It only took a full day of rest after a full day of art show install at Estudio Nomada! The night before the show, knowing that one piece alone would put 100 holes in the wall, I had hours of anxiety filled dreams. In one I couldn’t breathe and in another I had aged considerably and had grass growing out of my scalp.
Preparations for Holy Week (known here as Semana Santa), the week before Easter, begin many weeks before the event. Signs go up in the streets and alleys in which the processions shuffle along and I’ve been warned quite a bit about how crazy and packed it gets. For example, in this most Holy of weeks, people furiously pick pocket and grope women. Who do these cretins think they are? The president of the United States? I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the death and rebirth of Jesus, can you?
Ok. I have to tell you about my mini vacation between residencies in Granada. Most of this post is filled with pictures of the Alhambra but there are a few other memorable experiences from the city as well. In general, Granada was breathtakingly beautiful and colorfully exotic. While my heart is warming to Barcelona, Granada is still my favorite city so far.
Return of the Spanish sweets. New region, new flavors, though I do see some of the same sweets I saw in Andalucia turning up here and there. In my extreme dedication to you, my readers, I am truly taking several for the team by eating all of these sweets. Now you have to understand, I love sweets, I do, and there was a time I may have even been known for that, but that was many, many years ago. When I’m at home I’m pretty regimented about how much honey or maple syrup goes into my tea, my dessert is usually a couple of blocks of dark chocolate, and the calories are counted and plugged into “Lose it” to make sure I am staying on track with my health goals. Even though there are no calories in Spain, I envision that if you sliced open my belly right now, the cross section would look just like bacon. Sigh. BRING ON THE SWEETS, BITCHES!
This is the residency in “Barcelona” where I currently reside. It’s called Mas els Igols which means, “swamp farm.” There’s no swamp to be seen, but it is most certainly a farm… of grapes… and wine. It’s a vineyard!
Madre. De. Dios. I just saw my first flamenco show. I was blown away. While Seville is apparently the place to see a flamenco show and I was just there, I was just too busy to get one in. I’m told that the flamenco in Granada is flavored a bit different (apples and oranges) and that the cool thing I could see in Granada is gypsies dancing flamenco in caves. Caves! Ok! I saw pictures of a “cave” performance… and Spain’s definition and my definition of cave are very different. Still, I tried to book a show in one. Both places’ websites had a glitch that prevented this from happening and I was beginning to think I wasn’t going to see a show when I found Jardines de Zoraya.
Sorry I’ve been so quiet guys! I’m working on a couple of long posts for you and long posts take long. Long. Here’s some weird stuff and cool stuff while we wait for a long post. Weird stuff first!