Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Granada, Granada, Granada!

I always get stuck here. Mostly, because I like it here. Granada remains my favourite Spanish city, and this time around, making cash is proving not to be a problem. Great weather (although I sense a change), good work, plenty of good friends and many parties and hiking expeditions.

On the downside, I have lost count of the number of times I've been 'controlled' by the police. Seems like every other day. Don't think I look particularly scruffy, or wrongun like. It gets to you after a while. I'm simply trying to save enough cash for my next walk to raise more money for charity by selling sketches and picking up commissions, but I'm made to feel like a criminal. It's me who gets stuff stolen - go find the real criminals you cowardly little fucks.

Yesterday evening I went shopping at Mercadona. Carrying 5 bags full of groceries I sat down on a bench in Jardins de Triunfo to pause for 5 minutes. Almost immediately Policia Nacional turn up and ask for my documentation. They then run a check whilst one of them looks for my non-existent discarded drugs. All is fine. I'm not a criminal on the run. No criminal record, but hey, they politely tell me to fuck off anyway. I'm not allowed to sit on a park bench for 5 minutes. They then wait just around the corner to see if I return to collect my non-existent discarded stash.

Worse than that, some police are also issuing bogus fines to people. If they don't like the look of you they make up a story about Guardia Civil searching you and finding an illegal knife. €301 to pay at the end of the month, or you go to jail. Nice street policing!

Those are the hazzards of working on the streets and being perceived as being poor. Or, perhaps looking poor, but with cash to spend on bags full of groceries from Mercadona is even more suspicious?

The other hazzards are disease. There seems to be a fair bit of TB around. A mate is recovering in hospital with secondary meningitis that has caused a few brain problems.

Not all sunshine and fun. However, I do like it here. Staying until I have saved enough for my next walk and new boots and togs.

19 comments:

Hans said...

We saw you in Granada... or at least I think we did, sat on a bench looking on serenely - we saw your drawings anyway - amazing. Wanted to buy one but decided we'd never get it home in one piece and / or find a frame big enough! Do you do mail order?! I'd love to surprise my fiance with one of your drawings.,,

On another note, you should add paypal to your site so that people can donate. We didn't at the time as didn't know if you were around to get the money, or whether it would have just got picked up by someone else.

What charities are you supporting?

Sue said...

Missed your brief trip through Extremadura - if you're ever up this way again you're assured a place for the night with us.
www.hiddenspain.info
(apologies for it not being up to date)

The Lost Photographer said...

Hi Hans,

Thank you very much for your kind comments. I often supply sketches by post. More than happy to send to you if you donate a few €'s to any charity of your choice.

I have been raising money for various charities in Spain, but the majority of corporate sponsorship will go to Acorns in the UK and UNICEF here.

My future projects will raise money to pay for disadvantaged people from all backgrounds to enjoy 'camino experience' with a mentor.

I've tried PayPal donations and online sponsor forms, but they just don't seem to get the trust/interest.

Thanks again for your interest.

The Lost Photographer said...

Hi Sue,

I had a fab time hiking through Extremadura. Loved it and fully intend to do the stretch from Merida to Caceres again some day with a good friend.

I'll post on your blog when I'm out that way again.

Thanks.

Hans said...

That would be amazing.

I can transfer some money over online to your bank account if that's easier? Let me know if yes and I'll post my email so that you can send me your sort code / acct number and that way it'll cover the postage as well. Otherwise, I'll just donate to UNICEF.

If you can let me know your email I can send over my postal address - I never know how careful to be online!

When we were in Spain we went to Madrid, Cordoba, Granada & Capileira/Pampineira/Bubion. If you have any skteches from those places that'd be great as it'd be places we know.

Is it still beautifully warm in Spain? It's miserable in London.

Hans

The Lost Photographer said...

Another beautiful, warm, sunny day in Granada! Getting a bit chilly by night though.

I am about to leave Granada and start walking again. I have a nice sketch of Plaza de Santa Ana (probably where you saw me sketching) that I could post to you. Leave a postal address here and I'll send it to you. Once you have confirmed receipt I'll post a PayPal link for payment/donation.

The weather is one thing I don't miss about London ;)

Hans said...

I'm something of a nomad myself at the moment (although in a far less exciting fashion) so my work address is probably the best one:

Hannah Stratton
TimeBank - 2nd Floor downstream building,
1 London Bridge,
SE19BG


Thank you!

The Lost Photographer said...

I'll post tomorrow morning. Usually One week to Nine days for London. It's a nice sketch. I'll leave the paw prints on it - you can decide if you like them, or not. Easy clean with a little tissue paper.

I used to live just around the corner from your work place.

Are they building the Needle yet?

The Lost Photographer said...

Blimey! What happened to the cost of postage?

A €12 gamble is hopefully coming your way. If the guys on the ground are benefitting from such a huge hike in prices, then I am all in favour.

I like the idea of sending a sketch to my old home :)

Hans said...

thank you - I'll make sure I cover the postage in the donation.

Think they have started building the shard, although I don't go past it so I'm not sure of progress.

Will let you know when the picture arrives - might take a while with the strikes we've been having.

The Lost Photographer said...

Anything arrived yet?

Hans said...

No not yet - will let you know as soon as it does tho.

H

Hans said...

OK - got it! Thank you so much. I just took a peek as am in the office and it's a little too long to roll out in here but it looks great!

Let me know the paypal thingy and I'll send £ over to you.

thanks

H

Hans said...

Hey - it's arrived, thank you so much. Just post up the paypal thingy and I'll send over some money.

thanks!

H

Hans said...

oops - didn't think my earlier message saying it had got here had gone through, but now I see it has... oh well, now you know!

The Lost Photographer said...

So glad it finally arrived. Hope you like it.

On the street I would sell for about €30 here in Granada. Postage was close to €12.

Donate to me directly via PayPal at johncolley@uku.co.uk

I'm keen to get things up and running for my next project, and funds to this account will pay for server hosting fees etc. If you don't have a PayPal account I can post a link for you to make payment by card. I don't like PayPal, but it's convenient.

Or, donate to a charity of your choice and tell me who you paid :)

Hans said...

i'm afraid I don't have a paypal account, but I can get one if it's easier? or if you need to send payment details you can email me on h.stratton@timebank.org.uk

H

The Lost Photographer said...

Email sent.

Thank you very much!

Hans said...

just made payment - thank you. Save travelling!

H