23.4.14

Byakko「白虎」: La espera final



En el camino de vuelta a casa, hicimos parada en Ledicia Bengal, una pareja estupenda que han hecho nuestro sueño realidad. Byakko todavía no puede venir a casa (es demasiado pronto para separarlo de su mamá) pero eso no quita para que se me caiga la baba, como a la que más.



Estos gatos son muy especiales, ya que provienen de un cruce de cuarta generación entre un leopardo asiático y un gato doméstico. De ahí que tengan este aspecto tan salvaje y un brillo en el pelo muy especial. En Japón, siempre los veíamos en las tiendas de animales... Así que decidimos hacernos con uno al volver a Europa :)



Se caracterizan por las rosetas que son los círculos en el pelo, con el borde bastante más oscuro que el interior, el manto contrastado y la puntita del rabo negra.



Son muy cariñosos (esta hembra se ha tumbado a dormir en mi regazo) y juguetones, estamos deseando tener a Byakko en casa!!!

21.4.14

Dags för Påsk!

easter egg

When I was a child, my grandmother used to buy an Easter egg for me. Every year. Dark chocolate. Every year. Making that Sunday one of the most waited days. Because, unlike for Xmas... I was certain that I would get something awesome.

My grandmother, Juana. She was born in Paris (as her parents were refugees at the time) and spend some time in France as refugee too, when she was 30 years older and carrying 2 kids. But she didn't care. Widow, single mum in the 40s, not much to eat, always a newspaper to read. Laughed behind the back of the dictator and got a new baby (i.e. my mum) but never ever remarry. She lived with my mum during her entire life. Until I was 10. When she left this world. Leaving not only broken heart, but memorable times, traditions and stories, behind.

She becomes quite present on the Easter Sunday, as my mum kept getting eggs for me... Until I was too far to receive them. Lucky, we spent Easter in Zaragoza - the hometown. 

Somehow, there was a bit of time for everything. This post is not about exotic paradises, just about us. At the end of the day,  simple humans - with a camera in the hand.

pink rose full bloom

My father's roses are unfortunately brighter than his 79-y.o. brain. 13 roses blooming larger than the entire garden downstairs. They represent everything I mean when I say stay active, do more - criticize less. Only when taking care of them, can you see clarity coming out of his eyes. Unlike the confused face in front of that damn TV, way too many hours a day. 

Their beauty, creates a dramatic contraste with his mumbling. The roses, made me think. A lot. On how stupid we all are sometimes, to not differentiate the good from the bad, the health and the harm, the stress and the joy. When it can be so damn obvious, seen from the outside.

baby fingers

Marcos' hand is amazingly cute, tiny yet strong. Last time we saw his mum, she had a tummy. 
10 months man... They went by pretty fast.

baby face

We found a t-shirt in the artisan market of MuelleUno that suited him. Judging by the smile, I think he liked the elephant.

baby in lap

Moving on with the friends' and family rally, we couldn't skip my beloved godfather et al.

walkers and wine

He's got a touch for wine, perfume, glasses and well... All things nice.

goodfather

We also brought the mums (^_^)  Mine wearing a dress sewn by herself (in chanel-like cloth). 

My mum. Guess I'll never be as kind-hearted but, she will always be a reference, to improve. She embodies everything I wished we all would (in particular, those retired that have more spare time than anyone). Minimalism, big smile, daily exercise (i.e. 1h walk + Pilates), creative time (i.e. clothing for her, me and everyone around), inspirational art (i.e. weekly cinema, concerts and street events). Maybe because I left, or because she met Ana (my mother in-law, also in the picture, partner in crime). Doubtless, the last 10 years were among the best of her life. We were not close most of the time, but we did the most to travel and treasure every minute together, as if it was the last one.

mamas

I tried my cousin's Oliver Peoples, just for fun. Maybe because I started to see life, from a new angle.

girl in oliver peoples

...sometimes the most amazing locations, are those right inside the heart.

Påsk is a season for rebirth. After all these shocking events, we are finally settling. I have not cried, a single tear, since I landed in Malaga. Slowly, I am getting the willpower needed, to get my body back - smile's been there since the day I stepped on the Mediterranean sand.

Y vosotros, tenéis algún propósito que cumplir este año?

20.4.14

Malaga 「マラガ」: Sunday tapas in "Pepa y Pepe" 「休日のランチ は ペパとペペの店だ。」

paella in pepa y pepe tapas bar in Malaga

A real tapa of real paella.

grilled calamari pepa y pepe tapas bar in Malaga

I am not a big fun of eating out, but I must acknowledge that this Sunday was like a trip back to childhood. Contrary to what many believe, paella is rarely eaten by Spanish. This is not something we have on daily basis, let alone something that we (meaning people on their 30s) know very well how to cook.

Paella is what mum used to spend Sunday morning on, just to make dad (and well, me too) happy. Now she goes to concerts, I eat my veggies and my father... Well, he learned that food is not everything in life.

mixed salad pepa y pepe tapas bar in Malaga

This traditional mixed salad is another classic, with canned tuna and yummy tomatoes. No sauce.

boquerones en vinagre in pepa y pepe tapas bar in Malaga

Last, but not least, my favorite thing ever: Anchovies in Vinager (boquerones en vinagre)

1. Take fresh anchovy fillets, clean them well and take away the spines.
2. Submerge them in a mixture 3:1 of vinegar and olive oil (it can be replaced by sunflower oil), already seasoned with garlic, parsley and salt, for two days (my mum's style).
ALT 2: Submerge them in a bath of salt and water for 3 hours and vinegar for 6 hours in fridge.
3. Drain the liquid and serve seasoned with minced garlic, olive oil and parsley.
The fillets slowly turn white as the vinegar reacts with the fish. This is really nice (and cheap) appetizer.

This place is very close to where we stay, a tapas institution in Malaga.

Pepa y Pepe [WEB]

Happy Easter!

sakura

Ahora que son vacaciones, todos aprovechan para hacer una escapada al mar. Vivimos en la playa, pero nos toca alejarnos, encaminados hacia lo que se termina convirtiendo en un rally social.

Me divierten mucho las reacciones de la gente ante nuestra "vuelta a España". Un breve comentario, una mirada, me dice de qué pie cojeas, cuáles son tus frustraciones y qué valoras más en la vida.

Hay quien no le ve sentido. Quien se extraña de que hayamos tardado tanto tiempo en recular.  Quien lo ve como el paso final, el que no entiende qué hemos venido a buscar, a quien no le encaja eso de que esto no sea volver a casa - sino una mudanza más - y por supuesto, al que viene dando igual.

Tras casi un mes, me reitero. No me acostumbro a los gritos. Ni a que me miren de arriba abajo. Pero vamos, que tampoco me va a achantar.

Llevo 8 años viviendo como un alien y pienso seguir así, los 50 que me queden en la tierra. Sin tele, sin presiones. Pelando mangos, paseando, viajando y escribiendo aquí, cuando me da por filosofar.

Este País (salvo honrosas excepciones) está muy enfermo. No sé si es cosa de la Dictadura, la Religión o el entorno social. Aparte de la falta de inglés (... de la que mejor no hablar) es como si la gente, fijara su atención en el punto erróneo.

Dejar de compararse con otros, de cotillear y criticar. Centrarse en su vida. Pensar antes de hablar. Callar. Luchar. Escuchar. Mejorar. Viajar más, comprar menos. Caminar más, encerrarse menos. Disfrutar más, quejarse menos.

Tengo la suerte de convivir con una de las personas con más autoestima (i.e. felicidad) que conozco. Hoy que es Pascua, os dejo unas recomendaciones para empezar la semana renovados, cual Jesús :P

Si analizo los rasgos más característicos de su personalidad, supongo que resaltan la humildad del que no necesita pisotear a nadie, porque en el fondo sabe lo que vale; la empatía del que antepone la armonía por encima de sus intereses y la paciencia, de quien se siente fascinado por los puzzles, los mecanismos, las cosas que cuesta tiempo (y esfuerzo) hacer funcionar como uno quiere; pero en las que al final, compensa trabajar - simplemente por el simple hecho de crear algo con tus manos.

Dejo para otro día la capacidad de sufrimiento, que abunda en Japón y escasea por este lado del mundo... Porque es un arma de doble filo. Tras la gente que más se esfuerza suele esconderse una  ambición sin par. Evidentemente, es el motor de los que llegan a alcanzar más, pero también los lleva a estamparse de vez en cuando i.e. presionarte demasiado tiende a resultar en ansiedad, que es la antítesis del bienestar. 

Happy Easter、 皆さん。

17.4.14

Malaga「マラガ」: The Sushi Bar「寿司屋」

sushi bar malaga

Sushi Bar. In Europe. It just reminded me so much of Sushi Planet and that pink-silver-white-lacquered combo that is gayer than Ru Paul - I don't care, I love it.

sushi bar malaga

There are no words to describe feeling of spotting my 2 favorite items of Akki Sushi: Ika-Nori Salad (seaweed with squid) & Goma-Wakame (seaweed with sesame) in this place. Akki... It's my favorite spot (and the closest home) in Stockholm. We used to pick take-away and enjoy at home (as it's super tiny) or under the sun, when the weather was nice.

They just made me feel... Well... Home.

sushi bar malaga

Even though these items were never spotted during nearly 3 years in Japan, I must say that the chef seems to be Japanese (next time, I'll try to talk with him) basically because of his calm yet honorable look, as well as those knives waiting to slice fine items like eel (unagi) which are not common in average sushi spots in Europe.

These knives are known as deba bōchō「出刃包丁」(the thick ones) and yanagi ba「柳刃」which is the longest. These are designed to cut fish and angled only in one side like all pre-War knives were in Japan. Ironically, these knives are mostly designed to cater right-handed chefs, meaning that if you are different (i.e. left-handed) it will be cumbersome to find one for you.

Anyway. It was a nice lunch, with the plus of watching the Palm Sunday parade from the table.
Nice spot, convenient for those touring the city center.

The Sushi Bar [WEB]
Plaza Uncibay 8

16.4.14

Sandy feet 「日曜日はビーチ時間」

malagueta beach

We just decided, there will be no summer vacation this year: Who needs to get-away when living right-here?

There are little places that make me so happy like the beach. This is the new Yoyogi Koen. I love to see people moving, laughing, dancing, jumping, bending, spending time outdoors (as opposed to spending money indoors). That's one of the reasons why a stroll along the beach makes me smile.

What I see is happy people, staying true to themselves (excluding those munching on fried fish, obviously), investing time instead of wasting it.

malagueta beach

malagueta beach

From kite surf, through slack line and volley. It's a kindergarden, where everyone finds a free spot where all their dreams fit it and get some attention by those passing by...

malagueta beach

malagueta beach

malagueta beach

malagueta beach

Wednesday, last day of work... Then, holiday time!!

malagueta beach

15.4.14

Palm Sunday Look: Embellished sweater and lace.

lulu frost stone bracelet

I cannot buy in Le Ciel Bleu anymore.
So, I am quite glad to find similar items in ZARA. Perfect to enjoy Spring weather and stay true to the tradition of wearing something new in Palm Sunday.

ZARA embellished sweater and lace

Do you take me out for a walk? I'll be good girl...

ZARA embellished sweater and lace

Loving baby blue this season (just like last year's mint obsession, anyone?)

ZARA embellished sweater and lace

Lately, I am into high-waisted skirts. Not at all into bare tummies, though.

ZARA embellished sweater and lace

I love this crossing,  passing by everyday. It's just so classic and charming at the same time.  I mean, you can even see Jesus portrayed in one of the balconies on the upper left.


Top, skirt and pumps from ZARA. 
Bracelet from Lulu Frost.

14.4.14

Rise and shine.

miniature white orchid
Cuando llegamos a Japón, Enrique me compró esta orquídea para alegrarme el shock inicial.

De alguna manera, ambos le cogimos cariño. Al seguir floreciendo, regularmente año tras año, demuestra que por mal que estés, siempre hay luz al final del túnel. Suele ser cuestión de tiempo (y de rayos de sol).

Está prohibido traer plantas de Japón a EU, así que nos la metimos de estrangis en la maleta, porque no la podíamos abandonar. Ha perdido unas cuantas flores y no consigo encontrarle un sitio tan bueno, como el que tenía en el alféizar de nuestra antigua ventana. Este piso es una casa de extremos, o demasiado sol, o completa oscuridad.

Es una plantita fuerte y se recuperará del golpe. Igual que  yo (^_^)

Los que trabajéis, ánimo que es una semana corta (y paciencia con la Semana Santa).
El resto, a disfrutar de las vacaciones.