Monday, May 14, 2007

Wandering the Barcelona Night

In this barely affordable apartment here in Barcelona, amidst the many dozen turtle nicknacks, lives a most unstable internet connection, non-functional since our arrival at the end of the business-week. Sit with the rental agency's pro-IT practitioner for 3 hours as he resets the settings a million times while Dr. Sobre tours the students around old Roman Barcelona-- a real shame to miss the first class session.

Spend the next 6 hours playing catch-up on my contribution for the class, honing in on all of the video-art coming down the pipeline due to Loop Barcelona. Dr. Sobre returns, and after a typical meal of salad, cheeses, meats, fresh bread, and wine, we put the finishing touches on the syllabus and I set out looking for a copy-shop, though it's really too late for such business.

Hoof it up Carres Ribes intending to walk it to a dead-end, but see the Sagrada Familia off to the west-- no way to get out from under its spell. It beckons. And after another little while it pops out from behind the many city blocks I had traversed. For reasons beyond mentioning in the scope of this blog, I was prepared for disappointment. But the Sagrada Familia IS glorious-- if you've ever seen it, you know. For me it is an outrageous display of the glory glory glory of a contemporary (20th c.) expression on a scale of immense grandeur. Why the world I generally live in doesn't seem interested in high craftsmanship infused with a deep articulation of the living moment is beyond me.

And so I meander back to Ribes 13, zigzagging through the Eixample, daring myself to get really lost. But then there's that old redbrick Arc de Triomf that Dr. Sobre practically spits at for its ugliness every time we pass it by. I cut around some sidestreets gambling on one last shot at dematerialization, see the 'copiteria' I had originally set out in search of, then 3 blocks later am back on Ribes, and "home."

It'll be an early one tomorrow, with a stop at the newfound copy-shop on the way to meet the students at their dorm on the other side of the Gothic Quarter.

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