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My travel photography 2011 scholarship entry

Seeing through new eyes

SPAIN | Tuesday, 8 November 2011 | Views [570]

The mind map I had associated with Spain always read Matadors and Siestas, but visiting this country made me realize how much more there was beyond the projected media stereotype of bull running and sleepy afternoons.

Although 22% of the people in España claim to be atheists, the churches that adorn almost every street of the country remain witness to the power that the Church wielded over the country in days gone by.

The most attended service tends to be the one that begins at noon. Not a very common occurrence, where I come from, but it’s a way of making sure that the Saturday night partygoers make it to church.

And post feeding your spiritual self, it is time to break open the bottle. Tapas bars fill up with the after mass crowd, friends catching up for drink or just whiling away time till tables are available.

 

Sunday afternoons are perfect for a long, unhurried lunch with family and friends. A time to bask in the sunlight and enjoy the sights and sounds that surround you. Roasted lamb and piglet are among the specialties

There are several buildings to wow at in Spain, examples of extraordinary architecture dot the skyline, and are major attractions for tourist and architecture aficionados alike.

And amidst it all, they find time to sing and dance as well. I never believed it possible that religious songs could be danced to, but watching these dancers express their anguish at the crucifixion of Christ through the stomping of their feet and incredible expressions, made me a believer.

Seen through the eyes of a wanderer, Spain turns out to be a heady concoction of old and new, both living in perfect harmony and offering the best of  both worlds to anyone willing to stay and savour something unusual.

Tags: cape town, jason edwards, kruger national park, national geographic, scholarship, south africa, spain, travel, travel photography, wildlife photography

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