Category Archive: Spain

Spanish artists: Joan Miró

Ever since I was a little girl, I have found it fascinating when people’s last names have something to do with their chosen profession. Sometimes the names are directly linked—a Baker will open a cupcake shop–and sometimes it’s a little farther-fetched, but all the more intriguing, like William Penn becoming an author. Is it serendipity? …

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The Enchanting University Tunas

  One of my favorite grad student memories is of the first time I ever heard the university tuna. It was a magical and wonderful moment that I shall never forget. (Spoiler alert—this is not about chicken of the sea!) A group of us was sitting at an outdoor café in El Barrio Húmedo of …

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Carnaval, carnaval te quiero

Everyone has heard of Carnaval in Brazil, and Mardi Gras in New Orleans, but did you know that this same holiday celebration is a HUGE deal in Spain too? I didn’t and I have to say it’s like nothing I’d ever seen before! It’s like Halloween on steroids with parades that rival Macy’s famous one—IN …

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Caramelos de San Blas

All over the northern hemisphere, February is a cold and dark month. Spring seems forever away, and the light and gaiety of the holiday season is far behind. It’s not surprising that it’s a month when colds run rampant, and old remedies for the common sore throat once again assert themselves. When I lived in …

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Spanish Artists: Dalí

Spain has produced quite a few world-renown artists, and one of them is Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dalí I Doménech, or just Salvador Dalí, (pronounced Dah-LEE) who lived from 1904 to 1989. He was a colorful character, eccentric and proud of it, from Catalonia, on the east side of Spain, close to France. (Barcelona, a gorgeous …

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Happy New Year!

¡Feliz Año! ¿Que tal las uvas? This is an expression that will be said thousands of times today in Spain. “Happy (New) Year! How were the grapes?” No, it’s not that everyone owns vineyards, and grapes are not code for anything else—they really do mean, “How were your grapes?” To understand the question, allow me to …

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Turrón

One of my favorite Spanish holiday treats is turrón, and if you’ve never had it, you are missing out! It’s a typical sweet eaten around this time of the year, along with marzipan, and it’s similar to peanut brittle, except much less sugary.  In the picture you can see that the proportion of nuts to …

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Villancicos: Spanish Christmas Carols

(Several quick notes before you begin reading this blog post: unless you are from Spain and already know what I’m talking about, this post is best read with access to the internet—and perhaps headphones—so you can listen to the songs as I discuss them. Also, for most of them, you might want to minimize the …

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Christmas in Spain: Belenes

  Everything about being in Spain was so new and different for me, that it’s no wonder that Christmas was too. I grew up with Santa, Christmas trees and stockings hanging over the fireplace, and naively thought these were universal. Not so. Santa only recently got exported to Spain and is still not very popular. …

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¡Aupa España!

This week, Friday, December 6th, is a national holiday in Spain: the Day of the Spanish Constitution. It’s equivalent to our 4th of July holiday, though it’s not commemorated with fireworks, nor do people happily don the colors of their flag. But it is a day when everything is closed, and the Spanish will celebrate …

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