April 25, 2010

Marvelously Useless Things

I walked by the Museo de las Conceptas today. The museum is part of a convent, which was founded in 1599 when the building was given to the Church by a prominent Cuenca family to become Cuenca’s first convent--it still houses cloistered nuns. The building is enormous, taking up an entire city block. The museum was closed today so I’ll have to return but as I kept walking I noticed that there are narrow store doors inset along this massive blind wall and I was struck by their poetic and evocative names.

This is “Dulceria El Suspiro”, the literal translation is “The Sigh Sweet Shop”, but I prefer the more evocative, “The Sweet Shop of Sighs”. It makes me think of the young novices yearning for the world outside their walled compound.

On a happier note, this is “El Rumor del Rio”, “The River’s Murmur”, which is poetic enough but what I really like is the tag line--“Libros Viejos y Cosas Maravillosamente Inutiles”, which means “Old Books and Marvelously Useless Things”. I can’t wait to take a look at those marvelously useless things.

No comments: