Monday, September 28, 2015

Catalunyan Independence I

Catalunyan Independence

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft

Catalunya, the area of Spain I now live in and seek my American Dream, wanted an historic referendum on whether or not to secede from Spain. Catalunyans have a long-term distrust of Madrid and a history of rebellions put down brutally. The region creates 35% of Spain's GNP, and they want to stop the flow of tax money to Madrid. Nobody here cares a fig about the Spanish royal family. They see them as drains on the economy and a bunch of entitled, corrupt snobs.

"My grandfathers are singing in their graves," one Catalan told me. Earlier in September was the annual National Day of Catalunya. This year it was bigger because of the upcoming referendum.

Barcelona is the capital of Catalunya. Here is the Arc de Triomph with people preparing to march in favor of independence at the foot.

Flags were everywhere. This is how people showed support for indepence.

Wearing the flag of Catalunyan independence means you're in favor of it.

So does wearing these T-shirts.

This means you're in favor of it.

So does this.

This T-shirt? In favor.

Whole families got into it.

These people just wanted gelato.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

American Dream: Getting Away from it All

Fire Island September

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft

Yes, going to Fire Island is this beautiful. I found an inexpensive way to do it.

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The ferry crossing on a Friday night.

That's the Fire Island lighthouse in the distance.

The next morning, the view of at the Great South Bay.

The bay and a dock nearby.

A sunset over the bay.

Taken from the ferry going home.

The south shore of Long Island is the black line in the distance.

The marina on the Long Island south shore.

The freight boat that takes stuff to FI.

Approaching our ferry slip.

What's your favorite seashore to visit? Comment below.

Monday, September 21, 2015

An American Dream: Individualized Houses in Stonington, CT

American Dream: A Home with Bright Colors

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft

Stonington, CT doesn't just have bright paint on sides of houses, it has fabulous doors.

Consider this blog post to be a "Doors Of Stonington" poster, like "Doors of Dublin" or other similar posters that you've seen.

Pretty fabulous, no? How about you? Thinking of going for an interesting paint combination on your house? Comment below!

Monday, September 14, 2015

American Dream: A House by the Shore

American Dream: A Colorful House in Stonington, CT

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft

Stonington's houses are usually painted lively colors. On this particular photography day, clouds overcast the sun, which was good, but it was late afternoon, so a little dark. But you can still see the holiday effect of the bright colors.

Yellow, green, blue, all with white trim.

Pink and blue. Perhaps a brother and sister live here.

Don't forget green as a potential house color.

A petite place wrapped in a bright color.

A grand place in a bright color.

Another view of the grand place and the Stonington shoreline.

Colorful flags at the Portuguese Holy Ghost Society, a place where the descendants of the original Portuguese fishermen who worked in Stonington come to socialize.

Another grand yellow house. I like the writing room at the top!
How about you? Do you believe in having a colorful house? Comment below!

Friday, September 4, 2015

American Dream: To Live in a Mystery House

"Sunset Boulevard" in Stonington, CT: the American Dream of a Grand Old Place

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft

You know Norma Desmond's house in the movie -- a little creepy, quite mysterious, with a strange butler lurking all around?

There's a house in Stonington that reminds me of her house. The yard is behind a wall, and it's hard to see the back door. It seems like nobody ever comes or goes. And it's STRANGE...

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It has this tower. Not many windows. What's it for? Defending against Pequots? This house wasn't built in that era. Wow, I'd love to go inside and see what's going on!

Here's the view of the tower and house from the back. It's impossible to get a good, clear shot.

The tower is huge. It's no laughing matter.

The house has those vertical shades or blinds. What mysterious lives are being lived behind them?

How about a very grand window in your living room? But it's all blocked up by curtains. Nuts!

I don't know if this plaque refers to our mystery house, to the left, or this other house on the right, which is more in keeping with a 1790s style.

How about you? Are you like me, dying to get inside this place? Comment below!