31 March 2011

an overwhelming task

there comes a point in "keeping a blog" where it seems to be an impossible task.  (quotations are necessary since the number of posts i have are not quite up to par of what they should be).  it is nowhere near possible to recount every facet of my experience via the internet, or really through any means of communication.  i could spend hours, days even, trying to fully explain one specific experience, but i would never be able to do it justice. it is for this reason that i steer away from writing blog entries, although i did think it would be a good idea originally.  i do not possess the creative prowess to bring you into my world, however briefly.  photos, descriptions, explanations, or stories cannot do justice to the experience of living.

that being said, i will try SUPER hard to post more from now on.

25 February 2011

a tad borracha: a letter to spain

dear spain,
thanks for being awesome.  after over a month of residing within your borders, i can say with certainty that you are fantastic!  even your cheap wine that comes in cardboard packaging (1 euro) is very delicious and causes me to be a little borracha in public places, like the park.  but the best thing about you is that it is completely normal!  it seems as though public drunkenness is part of spanish culture, just like meeting your friends to go out at about midnight, since it's apparently not late at all.  children are often still outside when i'm going home to sleep.  but spain, despite your amazing wine and cheap beers and free tapas (all the time, everywhere as long as you purchase a drink), there are few things about you i just don't like.  for one, why does everything have to happen outside the house? i would like to have a few friends over to watch a movie, but you just won't let that occur. entertaining from home is amazing because you're in your own comfort zone, it's cheaper, and you can be obnoxious as much as you want without people staring.  luckily, you seem to have almost no rules at all, so public drunkenness, public displays of affection, public EVERYTHING is totally acceptable.  also, why do you have to charge for water?  water should always be free. that is a little ridiculous.  but all in all, you're pretty amazing, spain.  so, thanks.

11 February 2011

time flies...

...really, really fast.  it has been almost three weeks since i arrived in spain, and this is my first entry in that time.  it simultaneously feels like i have been here for months and just a few days; it's surreal.

i've been dreading this blog because now i feel like it's necessary to describe every tiny detail about spain, even those i haven't really encountered yet.  but i'll start with the basics: mi casa, la comida, y mi senora.

i live on the 6th floor of an apartment building near the center of the city.  the walk to the IES building is about 15 minutes, so really it's the same as when i'm in the EEUU...just less hills than ithaca.  i have my own room, but another IESer lives with me in the apartment:  Cynthia!  she's basically awesome.  it's really nice to have someone else around to share the experience with and have more people to chat with.  also, she's much better at speaking spanish than i am, and it makes life slightly easier and less nerve-wracking.
showers in spain are not allowed to be any length of time higher than a few minutes. however, the detachable shower head helps this immensely because i can wash my hair before any other part of my body gets wet and cold. then i just turn the water on and off so i don't waste.
my senora is awesome!  she is in her mid-60s and has been hosting students from various countries for over 25 years. she likes telling stories about other students and about her life...no details are left to the imagination.  and ooooh can she cook!  every day we eat la comida between 2:30 and 3 (14:30-15) and everything has been fabulous!  we usually have some kind of soup and bread to start off, and then salad or a side dish (such as potatoes!) and a main dish of..well, usually jamon. there is so much jamon here it's crazy.  but i have not had anything here that i don't like!  it's all amazing; i can't even describe.

i didn't have internet here until YESTERDAY.  i survived, of course, but it's been hard to do anything significant other than take ten minutes to check my e-mail while at school. however, the lack of internet has made me much more excited to just go outside and walk around the amazing city of granada.

fun fact:  the word "granada" means pomegranate!  i had no idea.  everything here is shaped like pomegranates, which i find really awesome.

23 January 2011

step two!

here i am...logan international airport in boston.  my flight was delayed a little, but that's totally fine with me.  it gives me more of an excuse to sit around and stare at things while surfing the interwebs.  wait!  this is same thing i do all the time...
but this time, it's while traveling by myself.  baby steps have been taken up to this point:  first was walking to the park with just my brother; then came the time when i was allowed to walk home from school by myself; then i could walk TO school (if i woke up early enough); walking led to driving to those same places around my lovely city; driving farther away to places such as canton came next...then i went to college.  and i traveled by myself everywhere!  i didn't even have to tell anyone! (usually i did anyway, just in case)  and soon i was able to take the car for the weekend, drive to syracuse to take the train down to "the city", drive to ithaca for a few days....and now this:
SPAIN.  seriously.
i was nervous to do the whole flying thing alone, especially since international flights seem so much  more glamorous.  but i just checked the board, had a late lunch, stood in line to check in, and essentially sprinted through security.  it was the fastest i have ever gone through anything before.  had i been clocked, my guess would be around the 4 minute mark...and that's putting my shoes back on and everything.  to top things off, the  lady tsa agent in my line was exceptionally attractive. : )  after this lovely start, i'm sure the rest of the trip will be fantastic.

the start to my day was not quite to the same par as this portion of the trip has been.  not only did i not sleep pretty much at all, but i also had to crawl out of bed at 7:30 or so to finish the super last minute packing of things such as my toothbrush.  we left a bit late for the most gut wrenching portion of the trip...the drive to the airport.  flying is a complete joy compared to the slippery roads on the way to saranac lake.  i felt like i was getting an ab workout because i was so tense.  after a while, i just stopped watching the road and closed my eyes.  after the irritating over-weightness of my bag (totally my fault, but how am i supposed to pick out clothes for FIVE MONTHS), i boraded what can only be the smallest passenger plane in existence.  there was space for 9 passengers plus the pilot. they even came in and asked "who wants to co-pilot today?" someone sat right next to the pilot! it was such close quarters that they pilot simply turned around and said "hey everyone, have a nice flight"  i was in the back, but it was fun in any case.  one thing though, it was the coldest place i have ever been.  my feet were in pain for at least a half an hour after getting off the plane.  next time, smart wool is a must.

for now, i am going back to waiting.  continuing my internet antics or possibly watching a movie until it's time to board.  i'm starting to see more passengers, flight attendants, and pilots.  IT'S ALMOST TIME!

19 January 2011

my future home

granada...i'm in love with you already, and i haven't even packed yet.  

18 January 2011

five days and counting

i realized today what a time warp being at home is.  while there is always something to do (technically), i can never seem to find the motivation or desire to finish any task...except watching lots of movies, reading a few books, and completing a puzzle or two.  but now, i'm heading off to spain!  and will very little left to accomplish, i have just stopped feeling the need to do anything.  there are things about taxes, bank accounts, credit cards, paperwork, pay-roll information all left to be done, and yet i have done nothing.  i do, after all, put the "pro" in "procrastination".  luckily, the devilish mistress Stress has crept up slowly over the last several weeks of break and is now threatening my future.  she will start withholding precious hours and forcing me to do work that really does need to be done.  in the end, i'll thank her.  her prodding will allow me to get on my flights without a problem and then relax, drink in hand, and enjoy my long awaited adventure.  

so now my suitcase is upstairs, and stacks of folded clothing cover my bed.  inevitably, they will be packed.  but first i must fulfill my procrastination quota and wait at least until tomorrow.