The Toys. The Music
Once you have seen the magnificent mural, this room reveals its contents in three sections. First, the memory of the municipal band of local music, second traditional popular festivals (Olentzero, passacaglia, Shrovetide, ring-shaped Christmas cake) and the third a modest exhibition of toys.
What magic is there in a plantain leaf or other botanical plants? The chemist mixes powders and measures out liquids. Pretty well aimed arrows to fight against a colic. He is somewhere between a scientist and a magician but he has experience on his side. Amongst shelves with glass pipettes aromas and colours from other worlds hide. With his white coat he tries to prolong life which is still just a breath.
Get a sheet of paper out… whilst Cora or Lupi arrives and a card game is organized in which they can challenge life as it prepares the challenge it will give to us all. The wine comes out to celebrate the daily work, the regular get together. The tavern or evening bar, makes room for the shop with its soap, espadrilles, noodles, needles, or “juice” for smoking. And it is the moment when the local women take over the premises to listen to or talk about the latest happenings.
Long or short?
The barber is still an authority that imposes his order on city life.
– I’ll cut it a bit shorter, it’s the fashion at the momen
And he puts the finishing touches to the heads trying, at the same time, to get some opinions for an interesting chat. As he sharpens the blade on the leather and guides it around the beards, the customer returns to his humble human condition. He will leave proud of his new style and the light hint of aftershave. The hair remains in a strange revolving chair, like life itself.
There were three schools: The school of life , which we all go through, although some did not learn anything. The teacher’s school, where letters have been woven with the flowers of sounds until phrases and utopias are composed. Not forgetting the numbers where many tasks were added and utilities were subtracted given by a remainder to carry on living. From the school of wisdom were illustrious maestros, quite a few craftsmen, many labourers and an immensity of women who kept and transmitted the four rules that are required for a frugal and happy life.
Plenary session hall. The office
With its books, decrees acclaimed to the beat of the drum, files, regulations, documents, receipts give us an x-ray of our history. The tree brings us the nostalgia where the Council were in session to decide that sheep, plants, people, roads and milestones had to coexist and respect each other mutually.
The Local History
It is written on the cave walls and the dolmens, on the shields, on the bells, on the chapels, in the images, on the tools, on the crosses in the cemetery, in the town hall files, in the books, in the lost photos, in the neurons of the old, on the teeth of the children, on the old trees that pass their seed to the new ones. It is us at the end of the road opening new ways.
The child is born with the day’s Saint and he dies hanging onto the flight of a prayer. The brotherhood is organized so that everyone has a right to something. The processions and rogations walk towards a mystery. Faith unites forces and lifts stones creating the temple and the chapel: contemplation and communion. In the pilgrimage families come together. A cross consecrates the white bread on the table and a little plant picked on the night of San Juan protects the house on the day of the storm.
The pelota court. Tug-of-war. Grass reapers. Football.
This town without work is nothing. We had to change every day events into a competition to go further when cutting the grass, when lifting large stones, when throwing something. Work excels itself until it becomes a celebration. Football that came from Bilbao allowed these young men to take their trousers off to run. We are left with the pelota court, The bowling alley… And a rope pulled to the limit by the strongest ones.
It is birth, refuge and death. The grandparents secure history and feed dreams with their caresses. The mother calms and vanquishes the brusqueness of the craftsman. And in the geographical heart the warmth from the stove brings together and unites. All roads lead to home, even if one child never comes back. .