What I Learned in Europe - Book Research - Part 2
Part of the reason why I was super excited to vacation to Europe was because I wanted to do research for my sequel...how old architecture looks in person and how the atmosphere of an old city feels. So, I wanted to start a series of posts about what I learned in Europe, concentrating on setting.
It seems that every city has a fresh food market place. You walk around, BAM, you find one.
Now, I'm from Arizona and am not aware of daily fresh food markets. And, you could definitely walk for hours (seriously, hours) and never find one. And you would probably become dehydrated and die somewhere along the way due to the ridiculously powerful Arizona sun.
We found that going to the market bright and early (in Barcelona) was the best time to watch people. People are going to work and grabbing something small to eat, either on the way to work or to pack up for lunch. (I could so get on board with that!) People were also out shopping for their weekly groceries. We saw several women with hamper-type baskets heading into the market to haggle over prices and choose the best cut of cheese or meat.
Definitely a busy, bustling place! It was crowded; it was humid; it was almost suffocating. Yet, all of the fruit, vegetables, fish, meat were fresh. Quite the juxtaposition of feelings. Feeling claustrophobic and yet excited. Feeling dizzy and yet knowing exactly that I wanted a fruit smoothie. Feeling rushed and yet happy to observe people around me.
What sparked my interest: there was so much activity that can be described and not described. In my sequel, there is a village area and I want the feel of it to be open, busy, with people minding their own business...but still arriving with the intention to gossip and shoot the breeze.
The challenge: It's hard to convey noise in a book, I find; more specifically, specific noise without creating a boring list of what the character hears.