Solveig's Weblog Portfolio

viernes, octubre 22, 2004

¿Catalan or Spanish?

I have now interviewed some people I met about their national feelings. The first person I talked to was the fruit and vegetable seller close to where I live. He is about 40 years old and he is originally from Indien but he has been living in Barcelona for about 15 years. He thought that it was an interesting question but he could not answer whether he felt most catalan or most spanish because he said that he is strongly bounded to his roots. However he said that he notices the "patriotism" in Catalonia and the desire among some of the people to become an independent part of Spain. And that they demand more autonomy. He also said that he thinks that the feelings for Catalonia is so strong because of the oppression of the Catalan identity during the dictatorship of Franco.

The other persons I talked to was a couple I met on the street. They were both around 60 years old. The man was from Barcelona and the woman was from France and they both felt really Catalan! They had been living in Sevilla several years but had now moved to Barcelona. They said that they felt proud of living in a part of Spain that are different when it comes to culture, traditions and language. It was interesting to hear her opinion because she was a foreigner but she said that she felt Catalan and one of the reasons might be that the Catalan language has a lot in common with the language they speak in the southern part of France. None of them thought that Catalonia would gain that much if they became an independent part of Spain.

The last person I talked to was a 17 years old girl I met in a coffeebar. She said that she felt most Catalan because she was brought up in that manner. She also told me that her parents felt strongly Catalan and her opinion was that most of the elderly people do. She said that the differences are bigger among younger people because they get more impressions from other youths around the country and also adopts new habits and customs. She could not tell me much about whether Catalonia should be an independent state or not because she had not thought about it.

martes, octubre 12, 2004

Just a travelling tip...

I dont know if this is relevant on our weblog but I just thought I wanted to give you a travel tip if you are planning to make a trip south...a few weeks ago I went to Alicante and Benidorm to meet my parents and my sister. :) I travelled by train to Alicante and by bus back to Barcelona. I will recommend you to go by train-it is more comfortable and just a little more expensive than bus. It took me 5 hours to get to Alicante and almost 8 hours to get back to Barcelona!You can buy tickets either at Barcelona Sants or at Estacio d'Autobuses Barcelona Norte. I first went to Alicante and then jumped on a bus towards Benidorm. (To get to the busstation you have to walk for approximately 10 minutes). I must say that Barcelona is beautiful compared with Alicante and when I arrived in Benidorm I completely understood what people had told me about the city-it is built for tourism!We also went on a trip to a small village called Guadalest situated near Benidorm. A very cosy place for a day's journey!
Well, just a small travelling tip from me!
Have a nice day!! ;)

martes, octubre 05, 2004

My first web log publication!!

Hi everybody!

I hope you all have had some good days here at St.Ignasi at the beginning of the course...I think this web log system offers a great opportunity to share our experiences during our stay here in Barcelona and also to get to know eachother better!

Me and my friends began to talk about this possibility to take part in an exchange program already the first year at the Norwegian School of Hotel Management in Stavanger. We evaluated which countries that seemed to be most tempting in accordance with the program and other factors that are important while studying abroad. And we agreed on that Spain would be the best choice. Not only because of the Erasmus program but also because we got the opportunity to learn some spanish. And luckily we all ended up in Barcelona!

Before arrival all I knew about the city, the culture, the people and all other elements that makes the society work was knowledge and experiences other people told me about. Those who had been to Barcelona all encouraged me to go!They all described the city as well arranged consisting of beautiful architecture and a lively population. And I definitely agree on that!I find it really advantageous that Barcelona is such an all-round city not only for the residents but also from a tourism point of view. It consists of modern commersial areas but also nice beaches and many green and quiet parks and areas scattered around the city.

Before I left home I was told that we would come a long way in Spain with some extra patience because of the "mañana mañana" mentality. But I must say that I feel everything moves on in the same manner as home, more or less, when it comes to effectiveness. However I try not to buy groceries when I am to hungry cause the ladies behind the counter often tend to be more interested in sharing yesterdays experiences with eachother than to serve the customers...

I also got some warnings before going to Barcelona "because the city is one of the most dangerous cities in Europe when it comes to crime, especially pickpocketing, and you´ll probably get robbed at least one time" people I had my expectations but,so far, I have not experienced anything unpleasant...The most helpful thing to do, I think, is to use some common sense!

I also had some expectations before starting at St.Ignasi. I read about the university and the program at the internet and also got some information from the students who attended the course last year. They were all really satisfied and recommended it deeply! I looked forward to meet all my classmates and also to see how the school system works in Spain. I think the university is such a special and venerable building and it is funny to experience that every age level are part of the same school.

So far the first two months in Barcelona has been a successful experience and I am looking forward to the rest!

Have a nice day!!!