A Basque in Boise

The Perfect Date

His hands. That’s what she remembers the most when she thinks about that day.

If she had to picture the ideal date, this would be it. Apart from dinner, when they sat facing each other, he never stopped holding her hand. He drove her all over the place, as anywhere she wanted to visit was fine with him. He kept his hand under hers over the gear shift practically the entire time, only reaching over once in a while to touch her face. Mostly they talked, but there were also moments of comfortable silence while the music played.

Their first stop was a park that had been featured in a movie a few years back. She loved the film and had wanted to visit the place for months. It was quite the adventure, not so much because of the attractions, but because they ended up sneaking in. The park was closed when they arrived. She was visibly disappointed, but he didn’t seem worried at all. He always knew his way around, no matter where they were. He smiled and told her to follow. There was another way in!

It was a rainy day, probably gray and gloomy too, but she couldn’t say for sure now. She vaguely recalls him putting his jacket around her to keep her warm. Then, taking her hand in his again, he guided her carefully down the uneven path towards the hidden entry. Truth is, they could have been anywhere, under any weather conditions, surrounded by people or completely alone, and it wouldn’t have matter to her, so long as they were together.

On their way to dinner, they drove past some caves that picked her interest. He could tell, so he turned the car around and bought tickets for the next tour. There was time for a drink before their guided visit but little space in the waiting area, hence they sat close together on a smaller bench. He was so funny and charming that she’d almost forgotten why they were there by the time the previous group emerged a few minutes later. It was damp and chilly inside the caves, yet she had never felt so radiant.

Despite being hungry, she would have rather put off dinner indefinitely. She didn’t want this day to end because she knew that no other would ever be as perfect. She focused so intently on taking in every word, every gesture, that many months after the date was over, after they were over, she could still feel the touch of his hands on her skin, warm and gentle, like a balmy summer day.


Boise’s Basque Museum will show Iñigo Asensio’s film “Euskara Munduan-Besteen Ahotan” to celebrate Basque Language Day

For those of us who love speaking in Basque, whether we are native speakers or we learned the language later in life, Basque language day is every day. We do our best to use it daily with friends, when listening to music, or reading the news.

However, December 3rd is the official day of the Basque language, and special events are held around the world centered on Euskara, including Boise. On December 8th, Basque Director Iñigo Asensio will show his film “Euskara Munduan-Besteen Ahotan” at the Basque Center.

Date: 12/8/16
Time: 6:30 pm

Location: Basque Center – Upstairs Card Room (601 W Grove St)

About the film

The evening will begin with a presentation by Euskara students, and a light reception. Asensio will then present the film “Euskara Munduan-Besteen Ahotan,” the second and final documentary of Euskara Munduan. This film focuses on Basque-speakers outside the Basque Country, including Boiseans Mayor Dave Bieter and members of the Bieter family; Wyoming poet David Romtvedt; and Basque-speakers in locations such as China and the Sahara. Asensio raises the idea of spreading Basque culture globally through language, and the many reasons (personal, economic, political) for choosing to learn and speak this language. The film is produced by Korima Films, Traola Sormena & Media, and Euskal Telebista, with support of the Basque Government and the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa.

“Euskara Munduan-Besteen Ahotan” is the follow up to “Euskara Munduan,” a documentary spanning the globe: ten countries on five continents with Euskara speakers giving their testimonies in each place. Some young and new to the country, some adults that have been away some 20-30 years and 50-60 years, immigrated abroad at a young age. In rich and poor countries, in the depths of Africa and the developed countries like Japan, work, hungry, driven by faith and love, all the parties involved have a common characteristic: Basque.

About the director

With a degree in Audiovisual Communication from the University of the Basque Country, Iñigo Asensio (Tolosa, 1985) started in documentary filmmaking at age 19 with the piece “1200 kilometers”, telling the story of two Moroccan teenagers arriving in northern Spain in the bottom of a bus. Inigo has focused many years of work in announcing for sporting events as well as working on music as part of the group Charlie & the Colors.  Euskara Munduan is his first completed film, a co-production with ETB and Traola Komunikazioa.

Film stills

Lyrics in Basque and English for Gatibu’s new single, ‘Nire ondoan baziña’

aske-maitte-aske-biziA couple of weeks ago, I wrote about Gatibu’s new song, ‘Nire ondoan baziña’, and promised to provide the lyrics in Basque as well as English. Luckily, Gatibu published a video with the lyrics in Basque, so all I had to do was spend some time on the translation. Remember, neither English nor Basque is my native language, so if you see anything out of place or have suggestions to make the translation better, please let me know!


Tougher Than The Rest (cont’d)

tougher-than-the-restI can finally feel my old self pushing through, determined and ready to come out of this dark and agonizing place where it’s been stuck for the last few months. I’m just now starting to enjoy my promotion at work, and it’s already been five weeks since my boss called with the job offer!

Looking back, I could have behaved somewhat differently. Of course, making decisions in hindsight it’s always easier, albeit useless. All the “ifs” in the world will not change one thing about the past. And who knows? Maybe what I took from this mess will come in handy in the future. Maybe the timing was wrong. Maybe it was never meant to be.

I think we got caught up in the moment, blinded by the novelty of it all, and thought that our feelings couldn’t possibly change. Mine haven’t, but his did – something I refused to accept for the longest time. Now that I had time to adjust and I’m able to think about it more rationally, I realize that the writing was probably on the wall way before I came back to Boise.

But what can I say? I’m an optimist with a positive outlook on life. I rather find solutions than focus on the obstacles. If something doesn’t work, then I think about alternatives. I was told last week, and I quote: “How could YOU be daft enough to even entertain the idea that a relationship with someone who lives in a different country is going to work?” Harsh! Still, I rather be “daft” and try than wonder forever what could have been.

If only we’d have had more time together to figure us out, to explore our personalities, our communication styles, our past experiences, and how they would influence the present. But we only knew each other on the surface. If I had known in advance what makes him reel and what puts him at ease, maybe things would have been different. But see? There I go again with that word: “If”. Nothing I can do to change it now.

I have no idea what the future holds, but I’m excited about it now that I can think about something other than him. It still hurts, I’m not going to lie, but it no longer feels like I’m drowning. I would love for he and I to stay friends, as he is really fun to talk to and I always learned something from our chats. Hopefully, he didn’t lock the door when he closed it.

Basque family from Areatza, Bizkaia seeks au-pair

Astero’s weekly bulletin always brings interesting news related to the Basque Diaspora. If you would like to have Astero, NABO’s weekly bulletin, sent directly to your inbox, you only have to fill out this form.

Basque Family From Areatza Seeks Au Pair

Au Pair NeededA young couple from Areatza, Bizkaia, is looking for an au-pair to look after their 3 year-old and 8 month-old baby. They are hoping to find someone to begin in December or, at the latest, January of next year. The couple speaks fluent Basque and Spanish, and very good English. If you are interested in this position, or know someone who may be, you can contact them by email.

In their own words

Dear au pair, We are Asier, Irati, our daughter Haizea and our son Kerman. We are 34, 35, 3 years old and 8months respectively.

We would like to share our life with you, you will be one more in our family. We would like to know more about your culture and show ours. If you love children, nature and you want to live in a small town in the Basque country we are the family you are looking for.

We are both engineers. Asier works for a big company and Irati works for the regional government. We need someone to look after them: to bring and pick up Haizea to the school, Kerman to the Kindergarten and play with them in English.

We live in a small town between small mountains with a great cultural life near Bilbao. The beach is quite close from here so we like going there.

Haizea is a very happy child who smiles a lot. She likes a lot animals, flowers, painting, dancing and playing with other children and people.

Kerman is a very easy going boy who is smiling all the time.

We speak perfect Spanish and Basque and quite good English.

We have had experience with three au pairs. We think that It is a very nice experience for us and for the children. We have very good time together. Sometimes we do some excursions to the mountain, beach… You could speak with them to know more about their opinion.

We are looking for a girl who likes children to have fun time with all of us but in special with them. We are open-minded people so we would like an au pair like us.

We need a person who brings Haizea to the school, play with her all in English and do some housework. Kerman goes to the kindergarten just in front of our house.

We live in a house with a small garden and terrace so we have lunch outside when the weather is good. We have the calm of a small town and the facilities of living close from a big city.

There are some au pair in the town so always it’s easier to live in a place who people are in the same situation than you, to make plans, to learn Spanish.

If you have any question do not hesitate to ask us! It will be a pleasure to answer you.

To download the letter as a PDF, click here.

Gatibu’s new single, ‘Nire ondoan baziña’ (If you were by my side) is out and, as always, amazing!


Gatibu, my favorite Basque rock band, presented their new single today on Gaztea radio. It’s called ‘Nire ondoan bazina’ (If you were by my side), and part of their upcoming album ‘Aske maitte, aske bizi’ (Love free, live free), which will be available at Durango’s Fair.

‘Nire ondoan bazina’ is an emotional song about the pain of being away from the person you love, and the inability to build a life together. It could be taken as a protest against the dispersion of Basque political prisoners, as the group has sang about similar issues before: ‘Ihes‘ (Run) and ‘Ez dago barroterik‘ (There are no iron bars) are a couple of examples.

Music, however, is a form of art, and art is in the eye of the beholder. Although this song might be political in nature, there might be other interpretations. People can become prisoners in many ways. They might build walls out of fear, out of anger, for self-preservation, and those can be as effective at keeping people out as a wall made of brick. And distance does not necessarily have to be physical. Two people can be in the same room, but worlds apart.

In any case, no matter what spin you put on it, I’m sure you’ll love it!

I will soon have the lyrics in Basque and the translation to English up on the post. I can’t wait for the rest of Gatibu‘s album!

Next concert dates

(Even though the link shows crossed off, it works!)

11/26/2016, Pariseko Euskal Etxea (Paris)

01/07/2017, Santana 27 (Bilbao) – Buy tickets

01/14/2017, Zentral Kafe Antzokia (Iruña) – Buy tickets

02/17/2017, Jimmy Jazz (Gazteiz) – Buy tickets

02/18/2017, Atabal (Miarritze/Biarritz) – Buy tickets

08/04/2017, Kafe Antzokia-Bermeo (Bermeo) – Buy tickets

05/13/2017, Sanagustin Kulturgunea (Azpeitia) – Buy tickets

XXV Edition of Bergara’s Love Letter and Love Sentence Contests

The Jardun association in Bergara, Gipuzkoa, has put together another edition of the Love Letters contest, also open to participants around the world. The letters must be written in Basque, original, and unpublished work. You have until January 8, 2017 to email or mail your letters by regular post. The winner will receive 500 Euros, and second place gets 250 Euros.

This year, you can also participate in the Love Sentence Contest. All sentences must be written in Basque, original, and unpublished work. You may submit as many sentences as you wish. You can send your love sentences by Whatsapp  to +34 605 71 24 69 by January 26th, 2017. If you need to download the app, just go here for iPhone, and here for Android.

Love Letter Contest Rules:

1. People born in 2002 or before can participate in the contest

2. All works have to be original, unpublished, and written in Basque

3. The works have to be written as letters on DIN A-4 paper, whether you are writing them by hand or submitting them by email. The letters cannot be longer than two pages

4. In order to mail the letter by post, you must place your contact information inside a small envelope (name and last names, age, telephone number, address), then put that inside a bigger envelope together with the letter and send it

To send your work by email, send the letter in a document with the letter’s title and your contact information on a separate file with your name as the title

5. Send the letter to the following address:

Amodiozko Gutunen XXV lehiaketa
Jardun Elkartea, Errotalde jauregia z/g
20570 Bergara – Gipuzkoa

E-mail: amodiozkogutunak@gmail.com

More information on www.jardun.eus, or by phone: +34 943763661 / +34 605 712 469

6. Submission deadline is January 8, 2017

7. First place will receive 500 Euros, and second place 250 Euros. There is also a 150 Euro prize for the first winner from Bergara, and a 150 Euro prize for the best entry by someone 26 years old or younger

8. The prices will be given on Valentine’s Day at the Bergara Casa de la cultura, on February 14, 2017 at 7 pm

9. The Jardun association will keep the works and will decide what to publish

10. The judging panel will be made up by leading people in the fields of literature and culture

 jardun_amodgut17_page_1 jardun_amodgut17_page_2

Jesus Alcelay, a longtime Boise resident from Oñati, on air about Hillary Clinton (in Basque)

The American people will finally decide today what type of leader they want for their country: a racist, bigoted and divise candidate, or Hillary Clinton.

jesus3862And as the US gears up for the most stressful night in years, the whole world watches. The Basque Country is no different, and EITB reached out to the Basque diaspora to find out how Basques abroad will be voting.

This morning, Jesus Alcelay (Idaho’s best chef and all-around great guy), spoke in favor of Hillary Clinton on Faktoria, a radio program from the Basque Country (audio in Basque). Originally from Oñati, Gipuzkoa, Jesus has spent most of his life in the US and became an American citizen two years ago. His interview starts at the 5:45 minute mark.


 On the flip side, Basque Nevada resident Jose Mari Beristain, will vote for Trump (audio in Spanish).

Do you have a picture with Aduriz? Share it wih A Basque in Boise!

I thought it’d be fun to see how many people have taken a picture Aduriz over the years. If you email yours to basquebombshell@gmail.com, I will add it to the gallery as a thank you to this awesome Lion. He made history last night when he became the first player to score five times in an Europa League game!


About Aritz Aduriz

If you didn’t know who Aritz Aduriz was, I’m sure you do by now. There is no escape to the media coverage our Zorro is getting after last night’s game. Athletic needed to win to stay in the competition, but every time we scored and put some distance in the scoreboard, Genk would make a goal. Luckily, Aduriz must have ice on his veins instead of blood and kept scoring. Athletic is now second in their group.

That same night, Spain coach Julen Lopetegui included the 35 year old striker in the squad against Macedonia for next week’s World Cup qualifier.

And to top it all, Aduriz’s second daughter was born moments after his magical scoring night! Zorionak!

The Bost

(To learn more, click here.)

Related posts:

Quest for a new Boise Basque Flag

The current initiative is to explore the viability of creating a new Boise Basque flag that would:

1) serve as a unifying symbol for Boise-area Basques,

2) connect us to the region of Bizkaia from where many of our Basque dances originated,

3) relate to the long history of the Basque Country, and

4) also serve as a banner that our non-Basque family and friends can also rally around.

A common ritual in some Basque Country towns during festival time is to bring out the town’s flag for a procession and presentation. Most of these flags date back to medieval times. In particular, a half-dozen towns around Durango in Bizkaia annually perform the Dantzari Dantza with their flags, and these are the dances that were transplanted here that include the Zortziko (kicking dance with eight guys), Txankarrekua (where the solo dancer is lifted up by two other dancers), etc. The idea is to potentially design our own distinctive Boise flag that would serve to connect us with this dance tradition, and the centuries of history behind them in the Basque Country.

An initial idea was to see about potentially incorporating blue and/or green since these are the colors of the Idaho flag and Boise as the City of Trees. This would of course not replace the Ikurrina or Basque flag, but only supplement it. We believe we have some very creative people in our club and beyond, and we were hoping to get some good ideas to develop some proposals.

If you have an idea for a design–or know someone who might–please send that to president@basquecenter.com.