Friday, July 26, 2013

A little light Spanish Housekeeping....

Its been about four months since I last posted.  I was truly enjoying what I was doing but as always "life" or what I would refer to as my day job gets in the way of fun frolicky illuminated Madrid writing. Marriage, kids, and losing a parent has mostly been on my mind. For specifics here's another blog I've ignored as well Hichila Macha. Anyway, there are couple of things I wanted to touch on and then it's back to posting on all the unique things I find about Madrid and who knows maybe the rest of Spain. In This New Business section of this post definitely addresses the latter.

Old Business: See MY LAST POST . Ok so I am a huge fan of Secretos de Madrid. What's not to love about a site devoted to mostly Madrid's history, its food and culture?  But methinks my translation of the Secretos de Madrid Essential 50 into English may have pissed off the site's owner, Manu. It's a shame as I think it's perhaps one of the best websites out there on Madrid. Here's Manu's new website address  If you speak Spanish you'll love it. If you don't the photos are worth a perusal. The irony is that I cannot access this new website. Tried several times. Hmmm, coincidence or conspiracy? I've been checking back frequently as I follow Secreto's tweets and it's starting to feel like I'm a junkie going through withdrawl. Or maybe I'm sounding like the twitter version of Glenn Close in fatal attraction? In all seriousness though, Secretos is a great Madrid-centric website but I won't be translating any of Manu's stuff anymore. He may know people in high places and I don't want to be banned from my favorite city as well. Ha.

New Business: Familial roots in Spain- My father passed away a few months ago. We had a strained relationship. Anyway, his mother, my grandmother Pearl was a Spaniard. Her parents, my great grandparents were Spaniards from a province in Granada, Canar. The village is part of a region called the Alpujarras sandwiched in between the Sierra Nevada and the Mediterranean. Here's a video of what it's like to live in this village. Apparently, animal stables are as popular in homes as garage's are here in Los Angeles.

In 1907, my great grandparents Jose and Pilar Espigares embarked on journey starting in Malaga, Spain over to Hawaii. In a boat and in deplorable conditions with their toddler Placida in tow they headed to Hilo to pick sugar cane. Eventually they migrated to California, settling in Yolo County, close to Sacramento, California's state capital. Although they originally planned on returning to their homeland, they never did. Before she passed away in 2007, my grandmother did get to visit Canar in 1993 with her sisters ( a year before I moved to Madrid). Unfortunately, my father never did get to go to Spain. And while we had our differences, we both shared a great love of reading history. And I know he was very proud that I embraced my Spanish heritage aside from truly identifying with my Mexican heritage.

Ok, that's that.  But one more thing- I really need to go to Canar- check out the boutique hotel El Cielo de Canar. Looks like there perfect place to reflect and ruminate on one's heritage. And not to mention relax with the neighbors!

So it's time to get back to embracing what I love and enjoying and managing "life" when it tries to get in the way or become overwhelming. There have been greater obstacles. As an example, here is the 1984 transcription my grandmother did on her parents journey to the United States from Spain.
My Great Grandparents journey as told by my Grandmother in 1984

Journey from Malaga to Hawaii never returning to Spain.