Saw this girlie one day at the MACBA. It was an open day for kids at the modern art museum. Cool! The kids loved her!
Books, dragons and roses: la diada de Sant Jordi
La Diada de Sant Jordi (Catalan pronunciation: [ɫə ðiˈaðə ðə ˈsaɲ ˈʒɔrði], Saint George’s Day), also known as El dia de la Rosa (The Day of the Rose) or El dia del Llibre (The Day of the Book) is a Catalan holiday held on 23 April, with similarities to Valentine’s Day and some unique twists that reflect the antiquity of the celebrations. The main event is the exchange of gifts between sweethearts, loved ones and colleagues. Historically, men gave women roses, and women gave men a book to celebrate the occasion—”a rose for love and a book forever.” In modern times, the mutual exchange of books is also customary. Roses have been associated with this day since medieval times, but the giving of books is a more recent tradition originating in 1923, when a bookseller started to promote the holiday as a way to commemorate the nearly simultaneous deaths of Miguel Cervantes and William Shakespeare on 23 April 1616. Barcelona is the publishing capital of both Catalan and Spanish languages and the combination of love and literacy was quickly adopted.
In Barcelona’s most visited street, La Rambla, and all over Catalonia, thousands of stands of roses and makeshift bookstalls are hastily set up for the occasion. By the end of the day, some four million roses and 800,000 books will have been purchased. Most women will carry a rose in hand, and half of the total yearly book sales in Catalonia take place on this occasion.
The sardana, the national dance of Catalonia, is performed throughout the day in the Plaça Sant Jaume in Barcelona. Many book stores and cafes host readings by authors (including 24-hour marathon readings of Cervantes’ “Don Quixote”). Street performers and musicians in public squares add to the day’s atmosphere.
23 April is also the only day of the year when the Palau de la Generalitat, Barcelona’s principal government building, is open to the public. The interior is decorated with roses to honour Saint George.
Catalonia exported its tradition of the book and the rose to the rest of the world. In 1995, the UNESCO adopted 23 April as World Book and Copyright Day.
And yes, Mandy had her magnificent rose, and I got a sumptuous (cook)book.
This is the MACBA, the Barcelona Museum of contemporary art, yesterday evening. In front of it is a big square, very popular with skaters. And next to it, says the Norwegian Dagbladet, they want to build the Rock!
This would be (yes, would, as I have some doubts about its feasibility) a hostel, complete with bar, fitness center, spa, swimming pool, cinema, and some … climbing facilities. If your Norwegian is not too bad, read more about it here. It is an idea of the Polish architectural company Ugo, for the Barcelona 2011 Bohemian Hostel for Backpackers International Competition
Sounds a bit like a joke to me, but hey, this being Barcelona, everything is possible!!!
And big TAK to our friend Gunn in Stavanger for letting us know. Feel free to visit her blog, Stavanger Daily Photo.
The sky, as reflected on the MACBA, Barcelona’s contemporary art museum. I left the guy in the picture to give an idea of the size.
This is for James’s Weekend Reflections meme. Click here to see more lovely photos.
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