Barcelona or Flin Flon?

All photographs by Max Neil Maximchuk

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to find out what the photos are about and where they were taken (Barcelona or Flin Flon).  Before you begin you have to decide whether or not you’re here as part of an English class (as in teacher or student).  If you aren’t, then follow the suggestions below (#1 – 6).  Or do it your own way.  That’s okay too.  Good luck.

If you are a student of English then you’ll probably still be following the procedure below but with some added instructions from your teacher.  Remember to work on only the row your teacher tells you to focus on at the time, and don’t jump ahead to the other rows too soon.  Speak with your partner and justify your reasoning, saying why you think the object is so-and-so  and how come City 1 is ‘X’ and City 2 is ‘Y’.  Look carefully at the pictures to see if you can spot any other clues from reflections, the kinds of trees growing there, style of cars, etc.

Suggested approach to looking at the clues

1.  First row of clues

Have a look at Clue 1 for City 1 and for City 2.  (Click on both boxes in this row.)  See if anything looks familiar or provides you with a possible inspiration.  Ask your friends for help or compete with them, seeing who will be closest to the correct final answer.

2.  Second row of clues

Look at Clue 2 for City 1 & City 2.  Do you know what the theme (object or situation) is?  These two new clues may bring you a little closer to the solution.

3.  Answers WHAT for Cities 1 & 2

Check out the answers here to find out or confirm what the theme (object) is.  Now try to guess which city (1 or 2) is Flin Flon and which is Barcelona.

4.  Answers WHERE for Cities 1 & 2

Click on this section to see photographs more clearly defining which city is which.  If it’s still not clear, you can confirm your guesses in A Comment or Two box.
If you’re familiar with one of those cities, try to determine more precisely where the photograph was taken (which neighbourhood, street, branch).

5.  Read commentary

Read a comment or two by the author and if you like, click on the CONTACT button to give a comment or two of your own.  He’d love to hear from you.

6.  Extra photos

Click here to see a few more images on the theme.


Clue 1 for City 1       What do you think it is?

Clue 1 for City 2       What do you think it is?

 Clue 2 for City 1       What do you think it is?

Clue 2 for City 2       What do you think it is?

Answer to WHAT for City 1

Now that you know WHAT it is, can you guess WHERE it is?

Answer to WHAT for City 2

Now that you know WHAT it is, can you guess WHERE it is?

Answer to WHERE for City 1

This is the final solution.  Look familiar?
(Look in A COMMENT OR TWO below to confirm which city.)

Answer to WHERE for City 2

This is the final solution.  Look familiar?
(Look in A COMMENT OR TWO below to confirm which city.)

A comment or two

Click here to read a few words about the images

How’d you do?
The theme was pictures of statues / sculptures of fish.
City 1 = Barcelona (near the two towers at the end of Marina)
City 2 = Flin Flon (going down Highway #10 through the center of town, across from the wàter tower)

When you see a sculpture, I suppose one of the first things that comes to mind is to ask yourself what does it represent or signify?

Barcelona offers many sculptures, but the one presented here is the creation of Canadian Frank Gehry.  You might have heard of some of his other work like the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain or the Dancing House in Prague, Czech Republic.  This sculpture was done for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and connects the famous Hotel Arts (one of the two towers) towards the seafront.

The Flin Flon sculpture depicts the hero of a sci-fi adventure novel, J.E. Preston Muddoch’s The Sunless City.  Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin rides his submarine in the bottomless lake and encounters many adventures.  I very much like the idea of a grocer (Josiah) designing and building his own submarine and then sets off to explore the unknown.

When I see a sculpture I do like to know a little of the story behind it, but I also just like to ‘experience’ it in its own right, without the colorful or informative background.  I look at the materials used, the lines and space it occupies and what’s around it.


The warmth of wood, directly from the trees and from the products we make from them, provides us with a sense of security and belonging.  There is strength there, and flexibility.  At least that is the effect that wood has upon me and understandably, not all people feel the same way.

I rejoice in the projects the city has supported which employ wood.  I think many feel a special benefit while walking on the wooden planks or in an enclosed area made from wood.  In Flin Flon there is a wonderful trail around part of the lake found in its centre and it starts out with many planks hosting the names of the people, organizations and businesses that have sponsored their presence.  In Barcelona in the Olympic Village there are a few overhead street crossings that join the residential area to where the beaches are about to begin.  It’s a simple little walk, but I think many appreciate it.


If you have a comment or two,
I’d like to hear them.

 Extra photo 1 for City 1

 Extra photo 2 for City 1

 Extra photo 3 for City 1

 Extra photo 4 for City 1

And that’s it, for now.
(unless you’re in an English class and your teacher has a few more plans for you)

Until the next time

Some ideas for the teacher

Student handout


 Suggestions &
teaching ideas


Extra materials for classroom use

This is meant to be a fun activity, involving the students as they speculate and try to make descriptions which may tax their repertoire of vocabulary.  To the left you see two different documents that might be of some aid to you.
Vocabulary     Student Handout
This is a short handout you can give and go over with your students.  It covers some
● location vocabulary (in the foreground / top left corner)
● descriptive vocabulary (hollow / shiny)
● expressions or structures (Beats me / can’t quite make out)
Suggestions & teaching ideas
This document includes 3 sections which could be useful to you in planning your classes
LESSON PLAN     A detailed lesson plan suggesting how to approach guiding the students through the different steps
FURTHER ACTIVITIES     More ideas on what can be done with the pictures offered in Glimpses
CONVERSATION TOPICS     Some suggestions on how to close the activity by ending it with a discussion connected to the images presented in the class