This weekend at PFTW, Maria asks us to share postcards “from a country you wish to visit”.
To be honest, I’m not really longing to go anywhere at all these days, unless I can learn to apparate and be allowed to borrow Hermione’s beaded bag. (If you don’t know what I’m referring to, you need to read Harry Potter! Instant magical transportation, and a tiny little handbag which still magically has room for absolutely everything one might possibly need…)
But if I pretend for a moment that I could do that, and was to go now, I think I might choose Spain. I have been there once, but that was 50 (!) years ago. It was in May 1967, it was our very first family trip abroad, and I was eleven going on twelve. We stayed in the small town of Sitges near Barcelona, and also went on a couple of tourist day trips by bus out of there – one to some small village up in the mountains, and one into the city of Barcelona.
In January (2017) I received this card from Ginny in the US, which brought up memories of the unique Barcelona architecture:
This park was built between 1900 and 1914 and was officially opened as a public park in 1926. In 1984, UNESCO declared the park a World Heritage Site under “Works of Antoni Gaudí”.
I’m not sure if we visited that park, but I know we did see the famous
cathedral*basilica La Sagrada Familia and some other buildings by Gaudi. The cathedral, started in 1882, is still being built… Checking up on it in Wikipedia now, it seems they estimate completion in 2026-28! (Maybe I’ll go in 2030 or so to check?)
My old postcards from 1967 are all glued into an album together with some very blurry black-and-white photos of my own. It’s a spiral-bound album so it can’t be put on the scanner… But I tried copying some with my camera (digitally cropped and edited after):
▲La Sagrada Familia, postcard image from ~1967 (or earlier).
▼Below, for comparison, an image from Wikipedia 2009.
I do think the cathedral has kept growing…!▼
▲ Another Gaudi building (postcard from ~1967).
▲ Postcard images from Sitges ~1967 ▼
To finish off: A postcrossing card from Madrid landed on my doormat this week, reminding me of Spain again. It shows signs with street names painted on tiles, from Madrid.
Quite an interesting challenge for me to try and figure out what the names meant. The one that puzzled me the most was “Calle de la montera”. I couldn’t find montera in my dictionary, and didn’t understand what the picture was supposed to be. After a bit of internet research I learned that montera is a bullfighter’s hat:
Montera - Photo from Wikipedia
PS. I see now (Wikipedia) that I made a mistake in calling La Sagrada Familia a cathedral, as it is not the seat of a bishop. The proper name is "basilica".