Friday, March 26, 2010

Primavera Francòfona

{{Ca sera moi la plus belle}}

Last night, the French Institute hosted a big festival, "Primavera Francòfona" (Francophone Spring) to celebrate the turning of the season and Francophone culture throughout the world. The outside of the building was turned into a giant piece of art (with groups of different colored tents with lights inside of them) and a concert hall and inside each level was dedicated to different parts of the Francophone world. The Switzerland level was my favorite; they had free samples of amazing cheese and chocolates, along with lots of recipes for Swiss cheese varieties (made me hungry just to look over the recipes!). The Africa level was very cool as well; they had pictures of various former African colonies, and inside one of the classrooms, performed African dances. A woman also told several traditional African legends in both Catalan and French (got to practice both of my new languages!). Next came the Caribbean Islands, where they had promotional information about why you'd want to come (umm sun, sand, beautiful scenery...why wouldn't I want to come?!). And above that there was a fine wine tasting (you had to pay quite a bit for it, so I passed, though I did get to enjoy a bit of nice French white wine). Finally came Morocco, all set up with carpets and wall hangings and amazing-looking catered food. That all went super fast, however, so I didn't get to try any! (Just went back to Switzerland for more cheese; they came well-prepared with plenty for everyone!).

Outside there was more food you could buy if you so desired, a big outdoor concert, an artesian market of cool jewelry, accessories, and clothing. The concert was really fun; the best group by far appears in my photo above. They said they were the "Representatives from the French colonies in outer space" here to show us what French-space culture is like through music. The songs all had absolutely hilarious titles and they used literally anything they could to make their instruments (from real guitars to a kazoo inside a watering can to pots and jars to two phones against a microphone to kids' bicycle horns). They were a show just in the way they dressed and acted and everyone wanted them to keep playing all night long.

But the French Institute had something else planned: turn the entrance level of the Institute into a discotheque, complete with French DJs and everything. They even traded out the normal lights in the ceiling for colored lights! It was hilarious and way more fun than I had expected it to be when I first decided to go with a friend from Catalan; they really pulled out the stops!

Unfortunately, the Primavera Francòfona corresponded with the end of my French class. Today we had the oral part of our final exam and then went for a final coffee together in the French Institute cafe. After spending two hours every day with this great group of people, I am really going to miss them all. Our teacher was very funny (and very French!) and the other students were fun to get along with and neat people from different walks of Barcelonan life. Definitely going to miss everyone quite a bit! It's going to feel strange on Monday when I don't go to French for the first time in...two and a half months!

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