Great Escape: Final Installment

Today I’m writing from Butler, PA.  I’m back on tour with Ensemble Espanyol playing venues on Long Island and in Pennsylvania.  Nice way to come back to reality (the US/reality/unreality bubble that is).  I addictively watched the events unfold in Egypt (while working in Chicago) and it was nothing short of amazing!  Inspiring!  Alucinante!  Well, to wrap up January’s Spain journal, at last:

Day Fourteen Tuesday 18th January

Just a great relaxed Madrid day of walking, chilling with friends, eating of course.  This evening I accompanied Rachel as she took the cante class offered by Talegon de Cordoba.  He’s a great singer and an incredible repository of flamenco knowledge;  at age 76, his anecdotes are brimming with flavors of an era fast disappearing and probably never to return.  The untimely death of Enrique Morente hangs like a pallor over Madrid flamenco.  The class was fabulous and Rachel sang impressively.  Met up with guitarrist Claudio Villanueva (who is renting my piso in Lavapies) afterwards.  We had some drinks then we moved on and met up with David a little later, finishing off the evening at:  ArteBar (no surprise; this is the happening spot!).

Day Fifteen Wednesday

Alas!  Our final day and Madrid seemed imbued with melancholy—actually, it just reflected our sadness at having to leave so soon.  Rachel had a two hour private class with Talegon (I played guitar) that went wonderfully.  Afterwards, we went to David’s place, said our goodbyes to Clara, then went out for a final evening that stretched out into the wee hours (this is still the great city for the Vientecuatrohoramarcha, sin duda).

Day Sixteen Thursday 20th January

Pack, have breakfast, finally head to Barajas airport.  Journey ended:  arrived in Minneapolis at 8:30PM to minus 10 degrees Fahrenheit.  A BRISK welcome home.  Tomorrow it’s on to bigger things; for now, all we can think of is: how soon can we return?