Baguio, 2013: Lemongrass Café and Artspace

Fab poet Luisa Igloria’s eldest daughter, Jennifer Patricia Cariño, is putting up a new café and artspace in Baguio, with partner Shirley Bognot.  It will be called Lemon Grass Café and Artspace.  Here’s the announcement from Proud Mama:

They have wonderful plans, boatloads of creative and culinary talent, good taste and big hearts.

I would love it if you and your networks would help them to raise the money they need (they also have lots of lovely incentives).

Please share widely and thank you for pledging!

Here are self’s two cents:  This café is for anyone who loves Baguio, coffee in all its permutations, art, food and drink, and women-powered projects.

Stay tuned.

Crossing (Into Spain)

This morning self is reading an anthology of essays about Spain (Part of the Travelers’ Tale Guides that  includes themed travel books such as Gutsy Women:  Travel Tips and Wisdom for the Road; Gutsy Mamas:  Travel Tips and Wisdom for Mothers on the Road; Travelers’ Tales Brazil, Travelers’ Tales Thailand; Travelers’ Tales Nepal, and many others)

In the one about Spain, there are pieces by, among others:  Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Barbara Kingsolver, and Louis de Bernieres.  At the end of each essay, functioning like a kind of coda, is a short, one or two-paragraph excerpt by another writer, the likes of Laurie Lee, Colm Toibin, Alastair Reid, John Sayles, and Octavio Paz.

Here’s one coda, by Laurie Lee.  It follows the piece “Crossing Into Spain,” by Ann and Larry Walker:

Perched in this southern town, one felt intensely the great square weight of Spain stretching away north behind one; felt all there was to leave, from these palm-fringed tropic shores to the misty hills of Bilbao; the plains of La Mancha, sierras of pine and snow, the golden villages perched on their gorges, wine smells of noon and sweet wood smoke of evening, the strings of mules crawling through huge brown landscapes, the rarity of grass, the wood ploughs scratching the dusty fields, and the families at evening sitting down to their plates of beans.  One heard the silences of the sierras, the cracking of sunburnt rocks, the sharp jungle voices of the women, the tavern-murmur of the men, the love songs of the girls rising at dawn, the sobbing of asses and the whine of hungry dogs.  Spain of cathedrals, palaces, caves and hovels; of blood-stained bull rings and prison yards; of weeping Virgins, tortured Christs, acid humour and incomparable song —  all this lay anchored between the great troughs of its mountains, locked in its local dialects, bound by its own sad pride.

Spain is but Spain, and belongs nowhere but where it is.  It is neither Catholic nor European but a structure of its own, forged from an African-Iberian past which exists in its own austere reality and rejects all shortcuts to a smoother life.

—  from A Rose for Winter:  Travels in Andalusia, 1995

Coronado to the Indians, Prior to Commencing Destruction

Self is currently reading Tony Horwitz’s A Voyage Long and Strange:  Rediscovering the New World.

She’s reached the part about Coronado’s trek through present-day Arizona, and how, upon encountering an Indian settlement, he orders the reading of a document called the Requerimiento, copies of which were carried “all over the Americas” by conquistadors, so that they could be read to “Indians before commencing battle.”

The proclamation opened with an abridged history of the world:  God’s creation of heaven and earth; Adam and Eve; St. Peter and the papacy.  It also explained that the pontiff in Rome had authorized Spain’s claim to the New World, a grant recorded in various documents.  “These you may view, if you wish,” the Requerimiento assured its Indian audience.  Then came the summons.  Natives who peacefully accepted the Spanish Crown as “king and lord” would be welcomed “with complete affection and charity,” and extended many privileges.  Indians should pause to consider this generous offer, taking as much time as “is reasonable.”

However, if they delayed, or refused to submit, the consequences would be immediate and awful.  “I assure you that, with the help of God, I will attack you mightily.  I will make war against you everywhere and in every way . . . “

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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