Opera, Life & Other Things.

Follow me on my journey to Madrid
with my voice, my iPad,
and My (small) budget.
  • You know what's the best part about being a student with a budget? No? ....anyone? Yeah. Me either.

AGREE WITH ME, OR ELSE!

Dear You,

(Sorry I haven’t written in the past few days. I’ve had to take life by the reigns and it was a little crazy but now all is well.)

I’ve noticed the American in me lately, and it’s been really tough to say “shut the hell up, you’re in a different country”. So I’m out almost every night, either having dinner, or just gazing at the sights and I can’t help but notice the kids out! My inner American is going crazy! “get those darn kids to bed!” I want to yell. Why?! Because! Well do you know how dangerous that is! And they won’t learn!….and they’ll get kidnapped…and…they’ll…

Fuck.

Here’s where I realize that I’m a stupid, paranoid American. Why is it that we’re taught at such an early age to distrust and be scared of the world. Is it so that we never leave? So we pledge allegiance to the only thing we know to be safe: Our family, our country? If it’s one thing I noticed about this country, it’s that people are open. Their ideas, their beliefs, their thoughts, and you just have to be okay with that. (Now, how many of you initially read that as AND YOU’RE GOING TO BE OKAY WITH THAT!! ALRIGHT, BUDDY?!?) because I know quite a few people that would. I think this is the only place I’ve been where I’ve met a total and complete stranger, we shared opinions on art and politics and we completely disagreed: He had his way of looking at it, and I had mine, but what did we do about it? Shared a tortilla, That’s what we did. Now how many of us, back in good ol’ ‘Murica can say we can do that?

"You’re not a democrat? Wait…? You don’t share the same ideas as I do? YOU DON’T SHARE THE SAME IDEAS AS I DO?!?! HULK…SMASH!!!"

I noticed while proof reading that I touched on two different topics, but when you think about it. They are one in the same. The reason we can’t handle different, is because we’re taught that different is wrong/dangerous. That you can only trust what you were taught, and anything or one that’s different to that is a threat to you.

Now, I’m not saying that what you know is wrong. I’m simply saying that to know the difference, we have to be open to different ideas.

SO GO MY BRETHREN! DISCUSS! DEBATE! BE FREE!
(ugh, I need friends)

Okay, tomorrow I’ll go back to talking about pretty buildings and people. I promise.

Xoxo,

Damien

There seems to be a correlation between food and writing…

Dear You,

I just got a free tortilla, I love Spain.

So, I’ve started to fall for this whole walking thing. (You’ll have to forgive me, I just love puns) Before you laugh at me, and call me weird. “How the hell can anyone ‘enjoy’ physical activity?”. Well fellow lazy human, I’ll explain:

There was no way that you’d get me to walk anywhere in Miami. I can count on one hand how many times I walked for recreational reasons, other times I would take it as a punishment, “really? So there’s seriously not a car to pick me up? Well I guess I’ll just take a taxi”.

But getting around here is a completely different experience. These street are made for walking. (well, cobblestone and spines don’t have the best relationship) it’s funny watching a car try to maneuver through the tight streets, and parallel park? Ha! Now, if a friend of mine told me, “hey do you wanna walk to sunset place?” I would probably laugh in their face and ask them if they were high. Now, if someone told me over here, ” hey wanna walk to Del Prado” I’d say, “badass, sounds like fun”.

I don’t know why we (as Americans) have strayed so much from our roots. Why as a collective whole do we wish to be so cut off from a community? I don’t know what douchebag came up with the concept of a suburban neighborhood where every house looks the same as the other, but whoever it was needs be water boarded or something drastic like that. I find it so stimulating to know that my building is 200 years old, that right behind me lived the illegitimate son of Carlos the 5th, and down the street lived some queen that I forgot the name of. How cool is that? I know that we can necessarily have kings and queens living in the states but, do you really want a home that was built with cardboard about 2 months ago?

I know it sounds like I’ve been bashing the states these past few days, and it’s because I have. There aren’t excuses for these things. When you have the freedom to build things with no substance or purpose, thats exactly what you’re going to get. Most of the buildings here (and this is coming from an atheist) are built to honor God or some deity, they were built to last, and it shows; and when you build 200 homes in the middle of the Everglades to make a profit, it also shows.

Alright, I should stop before I write a novel.

Philosopher Damien

Dear You,

Look at me, writing two days in a row; I may just keep up with this thing.

I’ve noticed that the days here run differently, and I mean that in a complete sense. The structure of the day is simply not what I(as an American) am used to. And it’s not something that we as tourists will ever understand either.

When Americans land (and I do mean, land) in a different country/culture, they basically live their American lives in another place. This is where I’ll say something, that may be a bit much (even for my standards): the concept of Tourism, is bullshit. Before you exit, let me support my thoughts. (btw, when I say Americans, I’m speaking of the “ammurican” American. The good ol’ American flag wearing, best western living, McDonalds eating, Ammurican speakin American) As I was saying before, when we go from one place to another, on our little cultural adventures, we simply do what we do everyday, some place else. When we arrive, with our 1000 lbs of luggage, the trip begins. We rush over to best western (and hopefully fast enough to not miss the continental breakfast) then rush over to the nearest museum (but we can’t stay too long because we have to make it too the next one) and then off to another, and if we’re quick enough, they can make 3 in a day. Don’t forget, though, that while this is all going on, we complain about America being far superior because “what kind of third world country doesn’t have A/C and Ice” (yes, I actually heard that the other day…) Now, I get that the trip example is rushed because they don’t always have enough time and want to get everything done in that small amount of time, but there’s a reason I chose this, so I’ll explain.

What I’m getting at here, is that we’re a culture of rushing. We want to rush, and do, and if you aren’t part of that, you’re a failure. We live our lives blindly from birth to 60 from 7 AM to 9 PM in a total blur, then (if you haven’t died of a heart attack) at 60 we have enough saved up to go to Italy for a week and then show all our friends pictures of it. I’m going to try to not get too existential about things but I definitely think this way of life must be re-evaluated. (I’ve been at this restaurant for 2 hours, finished my food almost and hour ago, sitting alone, writing this, and haven’t been bothered for the check, when was the last time that happened in the states?)

I guess I’ll leave you with these thoughts. I went a bit overboard today…maybe theres a full moon. Makes me all emotional and shit.

Besos,

Damien

P.S after I wrote this, I spoke to the waitress, (at my favorite restaurant) and she said there’s a special menu for the Reina Sofia students. I just died. There is a god.

1st post from Madrid.

Dear You,

This is me, attempting to do a travel blog. I’m going to be honest, I’m quite terrible at maintaining short-term conversations, let alone a (one sided) long-term one; so bare with me. Madrid is beyond perfect. Walking down each one of these little streets, my soul feels at home. At every corner there’s another restaurant (and for fatasses like me, that makes you happy) at prices that you can afford (and for broke ass people like me, that also makes you happy).

The people of Madrid are also quite enjoyable (god forbid i actually have a conversation with one-.-). That whole stereotype of the loud, fast-talking, vulgar people is totally and 100% true. I (as a nosy Cuban would) have listened to every else conversation and I swear I have to hold my laughter at times. They dress exactly how you would think, Every boy between the ages of 15-25 dresses in red soccer polos, and has that weird rat tail thing going on, and the girls just dress weird as hell. It’s almost as if they went shopping at a GoodWill from America in the 80’s. Let’s face it. Nothing from the 80’s is wearable. (though Lady GaGa would disagree)

There are a hell of a lot of tourists(Asians). It’s a little annoying, when you’re walking down an intimate street and your view is blocked by hundreds of umbrellas of (Chinese) flags. And the the homeless(gypsies). They’re not too bad as the world has led one to believe (well, so far) but they can be annoying. I think I’ve been both prayed for to every saint, and cursed all at the same time. But the lovely thing about being an American(asshole) is that I can pull off the “I’m sorry, I don’t speak Spanish!” card. Who knew? Ignorance can work in one’s favor.

(I know I’m writing a lot, but when do I ever have nothing to say?)

I think I should go out. Like. Be social. But I’m really terrible at it. Especially with people my age. Let’s face it. Teenagers are teenagers in every country, Not everyone is as old as my queen (beeky). Sure the kids here may be politically aware, but the drinking and loud electronic music kinda trumps that. I just need school to start, then I’ll have an excuse to not go out.

Alright, I won’t bore you any longer, until next time,

Damien

Laia Falc√≥n, one of the students at ESMRS…. Took my breath away.

So here’s the deal.

Look,

I’m really terrible with this whole blogging thing. Really. I am. I always say I’m going to post and write and blah blah blah but it never happens. WELL NOT THIS TIME! Now that I’m gonna be alone in a different country, I’m going to have all the time in the world (to be bored & lonely).

What to expect?

(nothing…honestly…)

Posts either dayly or every other day. (be it a blog post or a photo or an aria). Not restricting it to that, it’s simply the minimum.

Posts about me complaining about godknowswhat. Be it no ice in my water, or no AC or people just always speaking in Spanish.

Posts about how awesome Spain is.

Posts about how awesome school is.

Posts about how inactive my sex life is.

Posts about cats. I love cats.

Posts of Maria Callas

Oh! And I plan on recording my voice lessons and posting those too.

I leave to Madrid the 28th of August. 11 days. Omg.

Xoxo