10 November 2008

Ah, noviembre en Madrid

So let's see, the last week was just grand; there was a lot of homework and some midterms, and some midterms to hand back, so that was nice. Our Prado teacher gave us back our midterms with a preface to the effect of, "It's obvious not everyone knew the vocab words, or at least didn't know them as they pertain to art, etc, etc, and I could tell many of you did not do the reading, etc, etc, in short, the grades are not high." Then he passed around the grade sheet (I was warned they do that here) and I could see that no one in the class had gotten anything lower than a B-. I'm still not sure if he was messing with us or if he considers those to be legitimately bad grades.
Two Thursdays ago, the theater classes went out to a performance of Bodas de sangre, a classic play by Federico Garcia Lorca. The production we saw was fairly stylized, but very entertaining. I would certainly recommend it, and am looking at ticket info for when my mom comes to visit.
On Tuesday, our ceramics class had a field trip which pretty much got me out of class all day, except for Prado class. We went to two museums sort of in my general area which I will have to remember to take Mom to when she comes. They were both very small museums, but they had a lot of high-quality art. They were both also very cold, unfortunately. Did I mention that this has been the coldest October/November ever recorded in Madrid? No joke.
Tuesday night was an extremely exciting night, with the elections and all. I guess there were all night watch parties around Madrid. Whatever people say about Obama, the world really is excited for him to be president. He represents hope and positive change to people who don't even know anything about his platform. Most of all, he is not Bush, or anything like Bush, and that is enough for them. There were even 'Goodbye George Bush' parties on Wednesday night, with free entrance and drinks for Americans. I would have maybe gone if I hadn't needed to write a large paper and if I didn't have a 9 am on Thursday mornings.
Wednesday night was eventful, though, because my Creative Writing class went out to the theater. We weren't seeing a play or a musical, we were seeing a 'spectacle,' according to our teacher. It was called Comeme el coco negro (accent on the first o) and it was sort of like a cabaret experience, with feathers and stick-ons and drag queens and huge headdresses and the like. But it was funny, not shady. You could show up any time between 8:30 and 9:30, but 9:30 was what was written on the tickets, and then about 15 minutes after that, the performers took their 'final' bow. We were told the performance was over and that it was time to go. For the next hour or hour and a half, the whole thing was sort of like a comedy act or maybe just a play performed as they were 'striking' the set, and we got to help them. We folded curtains and helped to transport the props outside via fireman-style bucket brigade. It was really, really funny. The cast was really funny, and really versatile, so you would start to realize that the little girl up there on stage was really an actress who had been running around in a leather outfit with a huge, Shakira-esque wig just a few moments before, and before that, she'd been at our row, speaking perfect English with an Essex accent. She was really surprised when we made conversation with her, and she asked us where we were from. When we said the US, she was like, "Oh wonderful! Congratulations on Obama then!"
They also gave us bocadillos, although they had meat in them, so I did not partake. All in all, I would highly recommend that spectacle.
Alright, that was the last week. Next up: weekend in Venice.

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