Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Practice my Portugese.

Portugese sounds like a Russian speaking Spanish. Like Franco and Lenin had a beautiful, brown-skinned baby, and went into time-out all the way at the west end of the Iberian Peninsula and never came back or fought with anybody ever again.

Everything is really old here in Porto. There haven´t been any wars here, so all the old buildings are still around. Still tired from walking on the camino though. Think I´ll go lay on the beach tomorrow.

Porto is beautiful.

The back of my head when I was helping one of the homemade hot air balloons go up in Porto, Portugal.

Sometimes they don't make it very far.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Oh yeah, Manzanares El Real. I´ll get to it in a bit, I´m really tired.

Going through Poo!

And leaving Poo. I was pretty upset about the whole thing as you can see.

Followed these for about 110 kilometers, it´s pointing towards El Camino de Santiago.

This is a face Marcus would make.

These two crazy Dutch women starting walking from the center of France and had been walking for 3 months. I was only with them for a little bit because they were so intense.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Segovia to Los Picos to Galicia.

Schnackin´ on the road.

My bit of Hemingway reading for a few days and the penwork on the back of my hand. It´s the shell of St. James, the symbol for pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago.

Los Picos de Europa in Northern Spain. Got to spend three days in the mountains, just walking around.

There are so many of these guys here, they´re all six inches long and as big as your thumb. Every 10 feet there´d be one hanging out. Especially in the mornings when it was really damp.

A solid Ribera on top of my moleskin.

One night I slept in a Jewish tomb just outside Segovia. It was actually pretty nice, I slept really well. They were facing west, the traditional way a Jew was buried.

It really was that dramatic, too.

These guys would just be walking along the hiking path with you in the Picos de Europa.

This guy was crazy. He was 38, a coal miner, and smoked like a chimney and he smoked hash all day when we were hiking. And all he ate for lunch was pork. They eat a lot of pork here.

It´s been one week since I´ve showered.

That´s because I´m on the Camino de Santiago, walking about 25 km per day. Don´t really know how many miles that is, but I´m running out of Ibuprofen.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

From Madrid.

So, take all the stereotypes of Morocco, add more heat and twice the tourists and they´re all true.
More of the oppressive Moroccan sun...

A crammed market in Marrakech. Tires you out just to walk around the city it´s so busy.

Typical Arabic architecture, at one of the entrances to the medina.

There were tanneries in Fez, the methods they were using haven´t changed in about 7000 years. That´s a pile of stinky unprocessed wool. The smell really was unbelieveable.

Walking throught the medinas in Fez, Morocco.

I lasted five days in Morocco, with about 200 US dollars. Had to leave Marrakesh because something was ripping through my intestines. I was fevering alone on the top of a hotel one night. Kind of wanted to fly back and sleep in my aunt´s basement bedroom. Could´ve been anything, really. Ice, eggs, dates, fly eggs in my bread. There were flies everywhere. They moved different, too. More aggressive. You would bat them away and one second later they would just be 3 inches away from where they were. Got to me after a while. It´s like they´re really good at being flies, being pests. Which they should be because there´s so many of them in Morocco.

Morocco was a complete culture shock. It´s a muslim society, but a very tolerant one. They speak Arabic, and French to the white people. Lots of beggars, mopeds, bicycles, people moving in every direction. It was so hot there. Incredibly oppressive sun, plus the choking pollution, mouthfuls of diesel fumes, hot stink from black garbage bags, and all the tourists just tired me out. I wish I would´ve made it out of the cities. I was in Tangiers, Fez (which was my favorite) and Marrakech. Fez is the artisanal captital of Morocco. All the best rugs, blankets, leathers and pottery come from here. There is also a renaissance of sorts going on in the medina (old city) of Fez. Lots of people buying up properties and turning them into guesthouses or upscale apartments. I checked around a bit, really not that expensive yet.

Later I´ll put on a video of a call to prayer in Marrakech. The prayers come from all directions when you´re near the medina. The experience is haunting but elicits a respect and curiosity for Islam.

Hemingway's House

Hemingway's House
In Havana, Cuba.