Sunday, July 26, 2009

This Past Week

On Wednesday, I got to see a flamenco performance, and I’m very glad I went. After learning some flamenco technique on the guitar, it was great to hear it live, along with the singer and dancers. The energy and fast passages were very impressive.

This weekend we traveled to Segovia and La Granja. In Segovia, we saw the Roman Aqueduct, which was built around 50 BC without any mortar and spans 813 meters. When it was in use (up until 60 years ago), it could transport 30 liters of water per second to the Alcázar. Now, it is primarily a tourist attraction, but a great one to see. The Alcázar was also incredibly beautiful and very distinct, compared to the other castles we’ve seen here.

Finally, we visited La Granja de San Ildefonso. We toured the palace and then went out to the gardens to see the fountains go off, something that apparently only occurs two times per year! It was quite the experience to be surrounded by tons of people, following a man waving the Spanish flag to signal when the next fountain would go off. In fact, so many people were there that some cars were blocking both exits out of the parking lot. A professor recommended that we wait in the park, and so we joined other tourists there, sitting on boxes and feeling very San Fermin-esque.

I was happy to return to Salamanca, and on Sunday I walked with a friend to El Rastro, the flea market. It was quite a long walk, anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour, but I had an espresso in the morning, so I was feeling good J. It was pretty similar to American flea markets; they sold a variety of things, including bootleg DVDs, fake designer purses, socks, jewelry, and scarves. I was able to find a few gifts for friends there.

This upcoming week, I have two final exams and one project. On Saturday, I will already be back in the United States!

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