Ayer, visité la ciudad de Segovia con el grupo de WIPpers (Wisconsin, Indiana, Purdue group - there are casi 24 of us).
The town was quite surreal, to say the least. Between el castillo, the fortified town walls, the quasi-gothic cathedral and the acueducto romano, it was almost as if the whole place was a museum, or stuck in some sort of mountainous time capsule.
Our guía de visita, who is also our profesor de arte español, was quite verbose.
Knowledgable, but verbose.
The Segovians were quite different from the Madrileños also. Everyone smiled, no one picked your pocket, and the waiters and bar tenders in the small, backroad cafés were eager to explain anything to us - as were the locals sitting at the bar. I don't know if I would want to spend a year there, but it was certainly a welcome reprieve.
Many of the older (we're talking 15th/16th century, here) houses and buildings displayed the old codes of arms of the families who built them, each with animals, patterns, and scenes which portrayed some personality or historical trait of the family lines. The cathedral was also llena de imagenes, from the Bible of course, but even the very structure of the building as well as the lighting scheme of the windows held some deeper representation of the Trinity, faith, or Christian life.
Embarrasingly, even though I have attended a church with stained glass windows my entire life, I never consciously put together the reasoning behind stained glass.
If one imagines the sun as a representation of the glory of God, direct contact with our sinful selves would be a fatal. You can pretty much fill in the rest; but, the abstractness of the simbols in/on/of the cathedral implied that people - "uneducated" as they were, lived their lives in the constant presence of their religious simbols, which were taken from/seen in nature on a daily basis.
Also quite sad for the present.
No one takes the time to educate through metaphors anymore.
They are not beyond our mental capabilities, they are merely ignored and stigmatized as folklore or childish tales.
If humans learn through metaphors, and we presently disregard them, we are in a sense disregarding humanity.
Not so far from the truth.
On a lighter note, I will soon be living in the piso I mentioned earlier.
The awesome apartment in el barrio Puerta del Ángel with the absolutely amazing view of las montañas and downtown madrid.
Mi amigo Richard and I met with the arrendadores to go over the contract today.
Tomorrow, it's ours (along with some other Spanish dude).
Pictures will soon follow.
This was a welcome relief after classes today.
9-13:30 isn't obscenely long for classes, but when one is a history class, one is taught by Verbose McWordyson (a great guy, nonetheless), and one is a two hour grammar class, it makes for a lengthy little day en el campus Complutense.
Pues, está bien.
Estoy en España. No me importa.
Que tengaís un buen lunes,