The Sensations of the Sea: The Blind Sailors of the Rías Baixas

The smell of salt and seaweed, the sway of the waves, the cries of the seagulls, the lapping of the water, the wind in the sails and the force of the rudder, the spray on your cheeks and the chill of the air: these are the sensations of the sea through which the blind can navigate; feeling a landscape which they cannot see.  Continue reading “The Sensations of the Sea: The Blind Sailors of the Rías Baixas”

Galicia against the Eucalypt: Remedying an Australian Curse

In Galicia, October 2017, thousands of hectares of forest went up in blaze. Fires engulfed the hills of the provinces, even encroaching upon the industrial city of Vigo, in the region’s south-west.  The scenes were cataclysmic; a smoke-covered city, rings of fire crawling toward the suburbs visible from afar, the smell of ash ingrained into clothes for a week after the event. Continue reading “Galicia against the Eucalypt: Remedying an Australian Curse”

Horsing About at the Feria del Caballo, Jerez de la Frontera

La Feria del Caballo. La Feria. Feria is a dream, a kaleidoscope of colours and faces all flying by and blurring with the other, every day and night a dream within a dream, each a layer deeper than the other; you forget when one begins, when another ends, lose track of the chain of events which led you to be lost in this world where above you is a multi-coloured milky-way of fairy lights and below you a whirlpool wind of dust flying around your feet. Continue reading “Horsing About at the Feria del Caballo, Jerez de la Frontera”

Sensing Semana Santa: Holy Week in Southern Spain, Jerez de la Frontera

“In the south, we need to touch” – this is how the Spanish tradition of Semana Santa was explained to me by Manuel, council representative of Defensión brotherhood, a religious association which for over fifty years has participated in the Holy Week processions of Jerez de la Frontera, Spain. Commemorating the final days of Christ, the Semana Santa is an assault on your eyes and ears, and a jig-saw puzzle for your head. Continue reading “Sensing Semana Santa: Holy Week in Southern Spain, Jerez de la Frontera”

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