FIESTAS IN SPAIN: The mid-August fiestas

It’s a long weekend here in Spain and that’s because August 15th is a public holiday. It’s also when the most fiestas are celebrated in the entire year. Some 1,200 parties will energize nightlife throughout the country. From big cities like Madrid to the tiniest hamlet, music and revelry (as well as a religious act or two) are the order of the day. Most mark the Feast of the Assumption, but in today’s podcast we’ll pay special attention to a lesser known figure, San Roque, or St. Roch, whose feast day is August 16th. Enjoy!

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Operación Salida: Departure Day

Historia de unas vacaciones: cómo se logró el hito que revolucionó la vida  laboral | Sociedad
PHOTO: EXPANSION

Every year in early August the Spanish take flight from the cities and head for the coast or the mountains or anywhere that takes their minds off their routine lives and the heat. Their aim: summer vacation. And it usually kicks off with “Operación Salida”, or Departure Day. Before the journey was a nightmare, long, treacherous and sometmes deadly. Nowadays, the way it’s done is a lot different, but tradition is tradition, and the roads continue to fill up! Listen and learn more! 

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SPANISH HISTORY 101, EP 15. The Kingdom of Asturias

In today’s episode we take a look at the first major kingdom to arise during the famous Reconquista period, when the different regions of Spain, mainly Christian regions, began to ever-so-slowly push back the Muslim presence. The Kingdom of Asturias is sometimes seen as the cradle of modern Spain, and even though that would be inaccurate, there is no doubt that its role in those early medieval years was crucial to the deveopment of Spain. Listen and learn more. And enjoy!

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A Brief History of Gazpacho

RECETAS DE ESPAÑA

As we struggle to endure this endless heat wave in Spain this summer, we seek relief from one of this country’s most well-known dishes: gazpacho. Refreshing and nutritional., it’s the perfect way to keep cool and healthy at the same time. But this recipe has undergone a lot of changes since its origins. And you’ll probably be especially suprised to discover the last ingredient to be incorporated. Listen and learn more! And, as always, enjoy!

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Miguel Ángel Blanco: the day we stopped being afraid of ETA

FOTO: EL DEBATE

This week marks the 25th anniversary of the assassination of Miguel Ángel Blanco, a 29-year-old local councilman who was cruelly killed 1997 by the Basque terrorist group ETA, despite nationwide pleas to spare his life. The senseless murder triggered a response of pain and disgust so great it essentially announced the beginning of the end of ETA as an organization. Listen and learn more about this tragic and yet pivotal moment in Spain’s recent history. 

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The Day The Beatles Came to Spain

At the height of Beatlemania, the Fab Four from Liverpool flew into the heart of Spain, still under the firm grip of a fascist dictatorship, to perform their only concert in Madrid. The date was July 2, 1965. They would play the next day in Barcelona. Greeted with excitement, skepticism and Flamenco dancing, their stint in Spain was a snapshot of Spanish society during the 1960s, as well as an omen that big changes were about to happen to the country in the not so distant future. The concert itself was unremarkable, musically speaking, but just about everything else about the event was extraordinary. And the fact that it even happened at all was nothing short of a miracle. Listen and leran more. Enjoy!

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Spain and NATO: A brief history of a love/hate relationship

This year marks the 40th anniversary of Spain’s admission into the NATO alliance, and to commemorate it, Madrid is hosting the organization’s summit. And it couldn’t have come at a more delicate time, as the Russian invasion of Ukraine has made it one of the tensest moments in its history. Even so, despite Spain’s participation in some 22 operations over the years, the relationship has always been somewhat of an uneasy one, where support, disinterest and opposition push back and forth. Check out this podcast and learn a little more! Enjoy!

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STAYING COOL IN SUMMERTIME SPAIN

Summer in Madrid, and in Spain for that matter, can be a trying time for those who struggle with non-stop oppressive heat. There are many ways to cool off and keep hydrated, but in today’s podcast we are focusing on a couple of typical drinks (soft drinks) that are popular in Spain, and one that is hard to find, but still worth the effort to locate and try. Listen and enjoy!

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Spanish Fiestas: San Antonio de la Florida in Madrid

One of Madrid’s oldest and most traditional fiestas takes place every June at the church of San Antonio de la Florida, where each year women seeking a partner partake in the curious ritual of placing their hand in a basin full of pins and seeing how many stick to it.  The number predicts the amount of potential boyfriends they’ll have that year. Maybe one will become their future spouse. Listen to more and learn about the history of this classic Madrid tradition. Enjoy!

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Real Madrid and The Champions League: History of a match made in heaven

On May 28, Real Madrid won its 14th Champions League Cup, breaking its own record and widening the gap between it and the next team with the most cups, AC Milan, with 6. This wasn’t Madrid’s finest team, but it managed to pull it off, thus contributing to the belief by some that this team is somehow destined to greatness when it comes to Europe’s most important club competition. Today’s podcast briefly covers the history of Real Madrid and its successful love affair with the Champions League. 

You can subscribe to our podcasts on Spotify, Amazon. Apple and Castos. Or if you wish to support Brian’s Spain Domain, click on our PayPal donate button or check us out at Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/briansspaindomain