Authored By:

Kate M.

Happy Spring everyone!  Lots of things have been going on here in Spain. For instance, the election for the President of Andalusia is tomorrow, March 22 (Andalusia is the southern region of Spain); Seville is preparing for it’s busiest week of the year – Semana Santa; and we are experiencing some rain after about a month of sunshine - crazy.

This past week I completed a personal goal of mine: to go to a FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Sevilla FC soccer match before I return home. Last weekend I was in Madrid and got to see Real Madrid play, and this past Thursday I went to a Sevilla FC match. Both games were great! Soccer is one of the most popular Spanish pastimes, similar to how popular baseball, basketball, and football are in the United States. Fans are passionate about their respective teams and know every little detail about what’s happening in the program.

Games are usually scheduled at 8 or 9pm, right around dinnertime for the Spanish population; so many fans bring bocadillos (a packed lunch/dinner) to eat during halftime. At every game I went to there was a lively section of fans leading the rest of the stadium in cheers to support their team…or distract the opposing team.

Something really interesting about the soccer culture here is the whistling. When the crowd is angry for whatever reason (bad call by the ref, a foul, bad play), they make an ear.jpgercing whistle that vibrates throughout the stadium. I think that someone should measure the change in decibel level in the stadium when they whistle – it’s that loud.

I mentioned earlier that Semana Santa (the week before Easter) is coming up soon. Sevilla is one of the most well known destinations to watch the processions of Semana Santa. People from all over the world come during this week to see them. Another tasty aspect of Semana Santa are the sweets. One typical treat is la torrija (a.k.a. Spanish French toast). Torrijas are made with bread, eggs, milk or white wine, oil, honey and cinnamon. They are easy to make. First you dip the bread in the milk or white wine, and directly after into the eggs. Then you fry the bread in the oil. When it is cooked (or has buena pinta), you take the torrija out of the oil and put it in a dish. For the finishing touch, pour a warm mixture of honey and cinnamon overtop of the torrija. Yummmm…..