Follow the red balloon path in Barcelona

On my way home yesterday I decided to go through la plaça Sant Jaume challenging the tourists crowds that often take on Barcelona’s Gothic quarter. Fortunately, the square was not crowded, however something caught my attention immediately: a series of red balloons randomly scattered around.

barcelona red balloon sant jaume

Everybody seemed to wonder what they represented and who had placed them there, (even the police, who after checking one of them decided they were no harm to anybody).

barcelona red balloon gothic quarter

The image was beautiful and soon I discovered that there was a red balloon path going up Sant Honorat street and followed it.

barcelona landscape red balloon

I didn’t have to wait long to find out about the responsible of the installation as at the crossroad with Sant Domènech del Call I noticed two girls dropping some balloons. They told me they were from BCNLandscape a platform uniting several architects and environmentalists working on different types of projects all related to landscape.

barcelona red balloons gothic quarter

I kept following the path that ended up at Plaça Sant Felip Neri. There I couldn’t help but smile at the views of school kids on their lunchbreak holding a red balloon and running around the square. There was some kind of magic in it, something so simple as a balloon can still catch the attention of kids and make them happy. A little victory over our technology dominated world.

barcelona red balloon sant felip neri kids

In the end I didn’t find out what was exactly the purpose of this action, but like many pieces of art, it’s better not to ask why and just enjoy the beauty in it.

What do you think?

 

The bright side of Lloret de Mar in Costa Brava

Lloret de mar coast in costa brava

In terms of reputation, Lloret de Mar has definitely some work to do. What used to be a picturesque village in the southern part of the beautiful Costa Brava, has turned over the years into a popular destination among European youngsters looking for sun, beach and most of all fiesta. In fact, it’s quite common to describe as “Lloret tourism” all those low cost travelers who are only looking to get drunk and make party all night long (and who often provoke quarrels).

Fortunately not all of the town’s coast was ruined by tall hotel buildings looking to host as many tourists as possible. Sa caleta cove for instance still preserves some charm with all the fisherman’s boats.

Sa caleta Lloret de mar costa brava

The seaside path starting from this small bay offers what I consider some privileged views from the Mediterranean coast. But since a picture is worth a thousand words, judge yourself 🙂

lloret-de-mar-costa-brava-(10)

sa caleta lloret de mar costa brava

lloret de mar costa brava

lloret de mar costa brava view

Has the image you had of Lloret de Mar changed by these pictures?

Shugo Tokumaru live in Barcelona 2013

shugo-tokumaru-barcelona-may-2013

I discovered Shogu a couple of years ago via 8tracks, someone had included his cheerful and uplifting Lahaha in a mix and it  just blew my mind. One doesn’t need to understand the lyrics to get carried away by the sound produced by a myriad of  different instruments used, the pace of the rythm leading to a growing momentum and the sweet sound of his voice on top of it all.

So when I heard he was playing at sala [2] in Barcelona I knew it was gonna be a great Friday night.

The show started with a chipper Fanny Roz playing barefoot and inviting the audience to become part of the show. Born in France but signed up in Catalan label Bcore, she sang and played beautifully, telling different stories on every song.

fanny-roz-barcelona-2013

It was then the turn of Shugo Tokumaru and his 2 member band: a motivated drummer with a soothing smile radiating passion and happiness and an extremely talented girl who would play a dozen of instruments such as accordion, keyboard, xylophone, flute, woodblocks, chimes and even a puppet!

shugo tokumaru barcelona 2013

Shugo, who also performed barefoot, and his band played some of the new songs from In Focus such as Katachi or Decorate and previous hits such as Lahaha or Laminate. The connivance with the audience was obvious and when he grabbed an ukelele and started playing the first notes of Video Killed The Radio Stars it all became a sing-along ensemble.

I took a video of the show, even if the sound is not perfect, it will give you an idea of the positive energy and general state of happiness that could be felt during the show.

If you have the chance go see Shugo live!

MORE PICS FROM THE SHOW

Opening Max&Co Barcelona Flagship Store

To see and to be seen. That was the main concern of most of the fashionistas, it-girls, models, photographers, bloggers and designers who attended the opening of the brand new flag store in Barcelona of Max&Co, the young fashion brand from Max Mara company, last Thursday April, 11.

Invited by my long-time friend Tatel Velásquez from TrendyCrew, there I went not knowing what to expect really. The first impression was good. A two storeys store, with a retro and well-cared decoration, colorful outfits, mirrors everywhere and elegant waiters carrying healthy fresh fruit juices and cava.

maxandco barcelona opening

View from the stairs

max and co barcelona

The store is full of mirrors and lively colors

Not knowing much about the brand, I enjoyed the color spectrum and feminine style of the designs hanging around the store. Simple, but well-cared of, a collection made to enhance a woman’s figure with a retro yet fresh touch.

Pale pink is in vogue this spring/ summer

Pale pink is in vogue this spring/ summer

max and co barcelona

Showing some heel

However, as the time passed by and Barcelona’s beautiful people started to show up, it became obvious to me that no one was really interested in the displayed goods. It was a matter of showing leg, heels, Hermès bags, colorful hats and so on.

Hello, Hermès bag!

Hello, Hermès bag!

And then I realised how lucky I am, not living under the fashion tyranny. Of course I like fashion and trends (who lives unaffected by them?) but it would never occur to me to wear something so that others could recognise the brand or designer behind it.

Fashion is fun, and a way to express one’s personality, but I believe I wear what I like, not what I want others to see on me.

What do you think? Am I wrong to think I have more freedom just because I don’t take fashion and my day to day outfit too seriously? FOLLOW THE WHITE RABBIT

Barcelona Roller Derby

Barcelona roller derby

Maybe you’ve never heard about this sport. In fact, I had never heard about Roller Derby until a friend of mine enrolled in the Barcelona team. This sport was born in the 1930s in the US and has had a revival as a female amateur sport since the past decade.

It basically consists of two teams of five players rollerskating around a track. It’s a contact sport, where one player of each team (the jammer) has to score points by lapping members of the opposing team (blockers) who will attempt to block her way.

Barcelona Roller Derby

I believe the important thing about this game is that all the teams and leagues are amateur and run by the team members themselves, which makes the factk of belonging to a Roller Derby team a strong compromise.

Barcelona Roller Derby

The aesthetics of the game of Roller Derby are a big part of it. Although sometimes teams have their own uniform, most girls follow a kind of Rockabilly fashion, in the Barcelona Roller Derby league it’s hard to find a player without any tattoo. Team players also adopt a surname, which is often a play of words, like an alter ego of their personalities.

Barcelona roller derby

I recommend attending to a Roller Derby “bout” (match) and support your local team, you won’t feel disappointed. There’s always a great atmosphere and you can feel the energy that radiates from the passion these girls put into the game.

If you’re in Barcelona then make sure not to miss the first bout of the season tomorrow Friday the 22nd at 9:30 in CEM Trinitat Vella. These girls rock!