Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ground Control

When I come home I feel grounded. When I am away from home, I become someone else. I dunno.

It’s that here I am me—who I want to be. Being a nice person, being a good one isn’t some tough life decision I have to be constantly conscious of. Being good and nice comes naturally here. Does that mean I am living a lie away or even that I am not being myself?

I don’t think so; I think it’s that I have put in the time and effort to be nice, to be who I am here—comfortable. Away from home is foreign, temporary, and open to me; thus I must become closed, permanent, and familiar to myself. I guess this results in the new me. It is the same me, same philosophy, exhibited differently. And I don’t know if it’s good or bad, but it will definitely pass because away from home can easily become home. Or I can find my center without going home, but sadly that has not happened. I just don’t know.

Here I have control. It feels like away I lose my control.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Doors Track 11

Traveling. Bus. End. Wait. Delay. JFK. Goodbye. LaGuardia. Talia Hershewe. Portland. Eve. Day.

This is the last one about Spain. And it's not really about Spain.

About hour four of hanging in the airport and I realized that saying goodbye under stress and exhaustion is more of a test of endurance rather than a heartfelt experience.

I had dragged my ass out of bed and made my way to the plaza Cervantes for the last time. It was like the first day. Bus in the same place, the setting a blur behind the reality and immediacy of the people before me. This end was quiet and hectic. Nothing ceremonial about our quick goodbyes. 6 in the morning is too drowsy of an our, and far too cold, to allow for the necessary emotional response. The goodbye was an automatic disbelieving formality. We had already said goodbye for the last week.

A short bus trip to the airport. Terminal four and the line was out the door. Full of Spaniards and Americans doing the Holiday rush. Iberian Air was working hard at moving the line, we were lucky we had so much time. The quickest and least heartfelt goodbye was the one that should have had the most ceremony. I said goodbye to my friends on the Boston flight in a mere few seconds. They were in the wrong terminal and had to run to catch their flight. Quick goodbyes, quick hugs, and on we went.

The holiday rush elicits weird responses, a man late for his flight insisted on going on a hunger strike. Security was a normal. Fell asleep everywhere until boarding. In the cafe, in the terminal, in the plane. Sat next to Claire on the way back and we just sort of drowsily conversed, slept, and pretended that all of it wasn't the end. We had been delayed four hours and everyone was adjusting their plans. Ultimately it would be fine, which meant that sadly we would have to end our lovely Spain experience uneventfully. Hopped off the plane, went through customs with my wine, walked Claire to terminal three, and hopped on a bus to LaGuardia.

Sleeping in airports is not the most fun thing in the world to do but it certainly is something I can say I have done now. And if that makes the experience more bearable then so be it. Four in the morning. Wander to the line and bump into Talia Hershewe. One thing I have learned from Spain is that you can never escape Reno. Talia went to Reno High with me, and lives just down the street. It's always funny to have those happenstance meetings.

Flew into Portland and let the culture slip back into my consciousness. Christmas Eve was fun and loud and noisy and awesome. Family is good. Family is warm. Family is safe. Christmas day was similarly fun and very delicious. A reminder that my family doesn't cook with oil only.

Goodbye Spain.

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Short List to Remind Me

Things I miss about the US:
1.Costco. Large stores. Enormous parking lots.
2.Grass
3.sidewalks that aren't slippery when wet.
4.American brands
5.Cheetos
6.Americanized food
7.English
8.H2s and Suburbans
9.Being able to visit friends at their houses
10.My family and friends
11.The American Constitution
12.Regular sized drinks
13.free water at restaurants
14.Open space
15.big cups of coffee

Things I will miss about Spain:
1.Small locally owned businesses.
2.Tapas
3.the pace
4.tiny cars
5.Spanish
6.Drinking legally
7.My Spanish family and friends
8.Ancient churches
9.Awesome public transportation
10.siestas
11.plazas
12.Miguel Angel and Sergio
13.The ability to walk everywhere
14.cafe con leche
15.The club scene
16.going to bed at 7 in the morning

Add your own if you have any

Terra Firma

I walk into the dark. Four turns on the lock. The last turn, a click, a pop. I am inside the apartment. I cannot hear Ana sleeping but I know that she is here. And I know that it is my last night in Spain. I leave in a few hours.

The second I stepped off that plane I started a new life. Pressed a miniature reset button. Totally bewildered, unable to communicate, and just plain inexperienced. 4 months and an eternity has passed. Everyday come and gone.

Leaves under my feet. Pressed against the red brick sidewalk. Brown, yellow, green. A mat of leaves, a mosaic of color. The rain sprinkles gently. Streetlights. The plaza. The Calle Mayor. The last I will see of a land that has become so familiar.

Every moment a last something. How do I feel?

Numb.

The specter of death, the equally as disorienting experience of packing up a home and moving on, the last moment, the moment after the last moment, and the moment in between.

Spain has been wonderful.

Moments in between

Hostel. Cold. Love Actually. Doug sleep. Claire Sleep.

We had our last dinner with Verena. It was fun. Italian food and pictures. We said our goodbyes. The first of many here. We sat at the statue of Don Quixote for about a half hour and took photos. Photos of a time that will soon pass. The proof of something that is but a moment, a tiny speck of life. It's been cold. Really cold. The weather tells us it's winter, reminds us we have to go home.

We got a hostel room. We got a space to hang out together. Something we haven't been able to do. It was the American college experience in Spain. I missed it a lot. The ability to hang out and watch movies together is something absent from the Spanish life. It's cold it's cold.

Love Actually. Emma Thompson is a beautiful amazing actress. Excellent performance. Of course some of us fell asleep during the movie.

“Doug I am going to move you.”
“I'm trying to sleep.”
“I know, I'm going to move you so we can all fit and you can sleep.”
“can you take off my glasses?”
“yeah, here, scoot down.” We have gotten to a point where we all trust each other. We are Americans, strangers in a strange land—while it has become familiar to us, we will never have our roots in this place. We trust each other. We spread our roots, our history to each other—moving targets, fickle and fragile. Putting our trust in other humans is a tough thing; they can move, they can hurt us more than any place with its permanency. Yet we do it because we know that the pain of trusting people we will say goodbye to very soon is worth the pleasure of every remaining day.

I tugged on Claire's leg. “Don't do that! You don't have to be so rough,” Laura said. Claire barely stirred. “Just turn her foot.” I turned her foot, Claire made a noise. “Turn her foot again. Claire wake up.” Nothing. I turned her foot again and yanked her leg. Claire sat up, I started to get other things done. Laura started talking to Jarrod, looked back over at Claire, “she's asleep again! Claire!” Claire moved again. Every thirty seconds or so Claire would continue this routine: wake up, move a little, and crash again. No wonder she never wakes up from her alarms.

Last days, haha, this'll be fun.

Real Madrid. Conversation with Adam and Mini on Bus. Party at Louisiana. Karaoke. Decisions at the end.

Zaragoza is an awful team. It's freezing in this damn country. We were so excited to go to this game. Nose bleed seats. Cold and crazy. I miss playing soccer so much. The big last thing together. 6-0 slaughter game. It was fun to watch anyway. We left early to get back and party. Partying is important. Very important.

Caught the 12:30 to home. Alcala. Alcala is home I guess. Still so weird, home is almost gone, and we actually have to go home soon. Had a nice conversation with Adam and Mini on the bus. Hugs are on my list of Top Things. They are important and I miss them in this country. The dos besos thing doesn't quite cover the love of an abrazo. I think I am purging this country slowly from my body. I am keeping what I will remember and ditching the things I don't like. Cleaning off the dust of an unanalyzed semester and shining up the pretty parts.

We got to Alcala and went straight to the bars. Louisiana, 2 sombreros, one flaming shot...and 4 more shots spread out through the night. It's nice to see everyone and finish it all off—with Karaoke! And dancing at Can-Can. Coming full circle is not a metaphorical device used only in literature. I think people are attracted to it because it makes life and experience continuous and final at the same time. An end and a new beginning at the same time.

And some people like the end to do things they didn't do at the beginning. No names, no events, but they know who they are and what they did.

I love the end.

Torrejon. Ice rink. Peter Pan. Garena and Gino's.

Way hungover. Worst yet. Full circle can sometimes be a nasty reminder of the stupidity of one's past decisions.

Went to Torrejon to ice skate. That didn't happen. Oh well. Walked around downtown in Torrejon. Seeing new places three days before leaving. It's funny. It's odd. Torrejon is another Spanish town, much newer than Alcala but so much the same. The ice rink was dinky and not even worth it, kind of glad we didn't go. Wandered to the town's Peter Pan themed display. It was really cute. It was so suburban, something that has been missing from our lives as of late.

Headed to Garena and got some Gino's (a chain Italian). They were good. I unintentionally ordered the same thing I did as last time. Everyone was tired, everyone was quiet, everyone was sad, everyone was cold. I miss them already.

The end. Shopping. Pollo.

Day of shopping, picking up last minute gifts. The end, this is the end. Rain. Warmer, but still rain. I can't take it. Spain is crying for me. Spain is saying goodbye.

The Casa de Pollo. The last meal, the last one with everyone. We all said goodbye and Miguel Angel and Sergio stopped by. Said a little hey hey, said goodbye. Bittersweetness. Lots of fun lots of love, lots of everything. Excitement, anticipation, sorrow, closeness. Hugs, bygones, gone.

The end is so very close, the end is in two days.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Abbey Road: Track 16

Done bitches!

That was a week of cramming so hard. Like harder than diamonds hard. I am thoroughly underwhelmed by the release I feel though. It was so much build-up and ultimately the climax was boring and i'm pretty sure I really didn't accomplish as much as I had hoped. Oh well.

Spain is coming to an end, Bobby already left because of the British Airways strike (and all of the Boston kids had to spend about a thousand dollars more for new flights)...btw, the strike just got canceled so that's $1000 bucks we'll never see again. Yay for European socialization and it's inability to have a successful capitalist model that includes both profitability for their airlines and living wages. At least it's not France whose motto appears to be “Strike, riot, or revolution.”

so yeah, Vere is leaving tonight and we're gonna go out and I have to get all my extra packing and stuff done and I would really like to coordinate my plans and AGH!!!!! exhausted? No just getting ready to go.

And what about Jacob? Yeah he was totally here and visited and we kind of had fun. More like he watched me study and got to see only bits and pieces of the city. Too bad, I really wanted to be more of a host. He is an independent kid I just wish I got to be a better host.

And I met a couple of Skidmore kids. Wow.

Wrap up, wind up, more action, more fun, more, more, more.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Schaudenfraude

We have ten days left here. It's hard to think of the paradoxical feeling of just getting here and being here forever.

It's Saturday night and this is the first Saturday we have not gone out because of work. This is crazy. I am trying to get all of my work done and be ready to leave. It's all so...surreal.

To sort of hold us over I have compiled a list of the characters we see around town:
1.Jesus: we call him Jesus because he looks like Jesus, if Jesus was creepy and always approached you, stuck out his hand and said, “tienes monedas para cenar? (change for dinner?).” He has taken a liking to asking Brad for change on a regular basis. Brad has never said yes so I think he just gets a kick out of asking an American for money everyday. His little game.
2.Prayer guy: my favorite homeless guy. He just kneelson a street corner, bows his head very low and puts a change cup out. He remains absolutely still for a time. Doesn't bug anyone and is very nice. I tried to give him some bread one time but he doesn't have many teeth.
3.Embarazada: this chick is nuts. She walks up to you quite forcefully, it's kind of like she's charging at you, and with her whacked out eyes staring into your soul she says, “estoy embarazada, dame monedas (I am pregnant give me change).” She scared Claire so badly that Claire grabbed her purse, screamed, and jumped back. Embarazada hit me once. I don't like her.
4.DVD: She appears to be the only Asian that doesn't work in a Chino (Fruto Seco: kind of like a 7-11). She wanders into restaurants and bars asking if you want to buy an obviously bootlegged DVD. I don't get her. It was really weird the one time we all saw her dressed up and ready to go out on the town. Apparently, her day job has set hours and she makes enough of a wage that she can go out sometimes.
5.The deaf people: often people come up to us with a bag full of little glowing balls, put a ball on our table with a little note, and leave for a couple minutes. The note says that they are deaf and that the balls help them make a living. I can't imagine the type of living one could make off selling shit pieces of plastic and pretending to be deaf. I guess it works for the tourists.
6.Desempleados: unemployed people often come onto the train, and place packets of Kleenex on our chairs with a note describing their hardships. I have become such an indifferent asshole. I ignore them. And they usually smell awful too. Wow. I just passed judgment on a jobless man that is trying to sell kleenex on a train.
7.The armless man: this guy is a skinny fellow with no arms. He walks up and down the train chanting, “moooonnneeeeeeddaaaaaaasss, moooonnneeeeeeddaaaaaaasss” and shaking the cup of change that he holds in his mouth. It's loud, it's tragic, it's really hard not to laugh sometimes.
And that's life in Alcala. Come visit, there are some great people to meet.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Spain Fade Out

The wire.

We're getting to our final days. It's funny because we have become so well adjusted. I miss my home. I miss my family. But I have a little life here. And I will leave it all soon.

I've seen so many things, I have travelled so many places and I find that I am still the same. Thank God. I really didn't want to be someone different by the end of this.

I am a happy person, I have friends. Lots of friends. They are great, they are fun, and they are going to be missed. We are taking our last days in stride. Just a final push to the end and hopefully we will all make it home safe, well, and better.

Monday, December 7, 2009

17 days left

Breakfast. Ruins. View. Borj-Nord. Gate. Bargaining. Cafe Clock. Leaving. Taxi. No taxes. Security. Flight. Kebabs. Home.

The hotel has a lovely breakfast. The company of English speakers only serves to make it much better. Seriously, Dar El-Hana, if you ever go to Fes, that is the place to stay.

After breakfast we went off to see the town. Jarrod and I climbed to the top of the hill where ruins of old walls and buildings stood monolithically looking out upon the town. Fes is a haze. Just densely packed buildings and minarets poking above the skyline. The second call to prayer signalled our departure from the top of the hill. One last look at the view. We descended to the Borj-Nord Arms Museum. It is a quiet site on a hill, a fortress full of guns and cannons. It's a difficult juxtaposition; articles of war, elements that tear apart bodies, lives, civilizations, situated on a silent hill, surrounded by a garden, Guns that quietly look out over Fes.

Back at the Blue Gate, a welcome sight in a foreign land. Lunch at cafe clock, a tourist haven, Western and African fusion food. We leave. The taxi ride was scary as hell. Almost got in 3 car wrecks. Yay for no rules.

Pretty sure the guy wasn't a real taxi. He dropped us off outside the airport and made us walk. Because he didn't want to pay taxes.

I think airports are just inefficient. It took us an hour to move around 30 ft through security. That's the length of the airport. It was kind of ridiculous.

Don't remember the flight. Ate kebabs. Ana has a nativity up (Belin).

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Hello My Friend.

Woke early. Walked new city. Bus station. Fes. Nice shower. Small Cafe. City Noise. Tanneries. Koinichiwa. Argan Oil. Nice couple. Dinner.

The rooster crowing to wake us up is almost normal now. The cats wandering the streets are almost normal now. The tight streets are almost normal now. Almost.

But not quite.

We woke up early to catch the bus out of Chaouen to Fes. We walked out of the tiny Medina into North Africa. Real North Africa. It was run-down apartment complexes, vagrants on the street, and foreign smells good and bad. We stumbled into a plaza. We enjoyed our morning by watching the clouds pass over the mountains from an empty cafe. And we walked to the bus station as the sun rose into the sky.

I always say how much things look like California or Nevada, but I think it's just because those areas have the extensive landscapes and range of landscapes to fit almost any description. Why travel the world when you can go to california. Basically, the new city of Chaouen looks like a run-down version of Palm Springs, the mountains in the distance look like a shorter version of the Sierra Nevada, and everything takes a surreal tone because there is a North African city in the midst of my deja vu. A land familiar and utterly unknown. I feel like two people in two places in two times.

The bus ride was nice. A beautiful stroll through the country, with the Vidas de la gente passing before me. Jarrod and I played gin rummy for the second portion of the trip. Golden sun, golden hills, flimsy blue playing cards. When we got into Fes we checked into our hotel and enjoyed some much needed showers. The house is 300 years old.

We ate lunch at a small cafe in the late afternoon. A cafe outside the blue gate, full of locals, yelling smoking, playing cards. City noise; Fes is much louder than Chefchaouen.

Down the small street of the Medina, store fronts and calls. Donkeys laden with goods. Cats pecking at morsels. A tourist here, a tourist there. English, Spanish, French, Arabic. Confusion. Noise. And suddenly a mosque. An alley. And we are in an enormous leather goods store; the site of the oldest functioning tannery in the city. We are on the terrace. We are seeing the city at sunset. Wow.

We trek back up the hill. We hear many calls. “English? Spanish? Japan? Hello my friend. You see my shop. You look you like you buy. You no like you no buy. No problem. Come come.”

“Koinichiwa.”

“Arigato.” the calls never stop. All the way to the plaza.

But there we sit and watch the life pass by. And then there are kids by us. Running, jumping...flipping. Parkour. Going crazy, showing off, succeeding.

Then we sit down to dinner with a nice couple from New Zealand.

Bed, sleep.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Chefchaouen

Hike in hills. Walked around. Became accustomed. Man on hill. Bargaining. Nice lunch. Hash. Great dinner. Quiet.

It was cold. So very cold. But that was ok. We slept in. Pension Souika is ghetto. But the people are nice. Got up, got out and went to a random plaza. And we ate breakfast in the restaurant there and watched the people and the cats. And then we walked around and saw the hills and shopped a little. And definitely the city is surreal. The blue and purple and periwinkle. The sun and the mountains and the colorful shop merchandise. It passes in and out of an impressionistic dream, a history textbook, a national geographic. And we realized that we had become accustomed to the landscape, the people, the language, the tight streets, the cats, and the air.

We wandered outside the medina. We wandered into the hills. We wandered until we met a man with tres hijos and that no vos vendo hash and he vivo en la villa alla. He was very nice. But we wanted quiet. And so we said goodbye to him and we wandered higher into the hills and looked out on the landscape around us. A beautiful green dotted with the whites of villages. Slow winding roads with lazy cars gliding across them. The land was quiet.

All was quiet. Something we hadn't had in forever. Spain is a loud country. We live a loud life there.

But here.

Here was quiet.

We strolled down the hill, watched the city from the old mosque, and entered back into the medina. “Hash?” All the time the call came. NO. We didn't want any freakin' hash. At least they weren't robbing us (unlike the poor kid from Seattle we met, that had just gotten robbed in Tangiers (which is a city in the North of Morocco and not a country as I idiotically believed) and was very noticeably nervous).

And we started the process of bargaining. We were ok at it. It is really cool, and very fun. But now that I think about it, the prices aren't amazing ever, and ultimately we pay exactly what it seems to be worth. But that's fine, I hope I grabbed some nice gifts.

When we wandered around the city we got a feel for it. When we searched helplessly for a bag we almost bought spices and soap, when we wanted a quick meal, we got a four course dinner. When it's all through I know I will have loved it all. Really, we ran into a tiny Berber hotel where every man had a Berber moustache, and they served us four courses and we ate like kings for 70 dh (7 euro). And it was quiet there too, and we were the only ones there.

Peace. Quiet. Breathe out. Relief. Chaouen is good for the soul.

The Blue City

Morning call to prayer. Rain. Awesome shower. Jarrod forgot towel. Bus station. Vendors on bus. Crowded taxi. Guide. Ghetto hotel. Wander hills/Chefchaouen. Hash. Quiet. Night. Walk around. Cards on terrace. Talks and full moon.

At five fifteen I was pulled out of my sleep by the morning call to prayer. It is odd to wake to the calls of a man chanting incantations of his faith to God at five in the morning. The words are hypnotic. I drifted back to sleep. I awoke again to rain pattering on the roof.

And then I took an awesome shower. Jarrod did too after me. But he forgot his towel, so he didn't quite enjoy it as much as me. Then we had a very nice breakfast at the hotel. The woman there was a great cook but didn't speak enough English to help us figure out payment BUT luckily the guy from the night before came in and figured it all out. He was super helpful and took us to the bus station and figured out a ride for us to Chefchaouen. The bad news was that it was a private company and I am sure the bus was about to break down the whole way. Everything was crowded and muddy.

While we waited on the bus, vendors came on the bus subway style and tried to convert me and sell me snacks. I don't understand enough of the language to really be bothered, but they were still kind of a funny nuisance. Then we were off to the countryside of Morocco. And I am pretty sure that we stopped at one point to actually fix the bus.

Oh yeah, did I mention that we couldn't actually catch a bus to chefchaouen? Well, we couldn't. Instead we stopped about 7km outside town and took a taxi in. A crowded taxi. Where no one spoke the language. It was awkward. But it worked.

We got in and had no idea where we were. Asked a cop to help us. But he wasn't very helpful, he only spoke french, and we only spoke spanish and english. Shit.

So we tried our best with what we understood. Which was very little. And we headed up. Then luck, a kind of scary dude that said he worked for our hotel took us to our destination. He was very helpful. And he kept trying to sell us hash. Hmmm...

The hotel was Ghetto. Pension Souika. Way ghetto. But it gets the job done. Oh, and the guy that was an “employee” for the hotel? Well, he was just a drug dealer. Skeezy but nice. Oh and everyone is always offering you hash. Watch out for cop traps though.

Went to the hills and walked to see the city on the hill. It is a beautiful town in the mountains, absolutely stunning. Blue and whitewashed buildings. And quiet. Something we haven't had in the bustling Spanish metropolis for a long time.

After dinner we wandered around some more. The city is quiet. And beautiful. Surreal, like a dream. Wandering through dimly lit streets painted pastel frosting blue. A memory, a dream. Something not quite there.

Then we played cards on the terrace. And there are a shit ton of Spaniards here. They are kind of ignorant. Always asking where the beer is. There isn't an abundance of alcohol here and drinking seems to be generally frowned upon. And Americans still have the bad rap.

We talked on the terrace and looked at a full moon over Chefchaouen. We are spoiled American brats.

1000 Camels

Jarrod and I were on the plane and saw a little asian woman with us. And we got to thinking of Kara (Tufts, Japanese-American, very nice) and her event in Morocco where she almost got sold for 1000 camels to a man. So we came up with this.

Jarrod and I exchange somber looks as we pass the Asian woman
Jarrod: I feel so bad for her, she could have such a good life.
Me: I just hope her family got a good price for her
Asian Lady: What? What are you talking about?
Jarrod: you. Poor thing is in shock, let's just hope your new husband doesn't beat you
Asian Lady: but...I live in Westchester. I have a dog.
Jarrod and I look at each other, look at her, and move on slowly
Me: best of luck, I hope you can cook couscous.

Marruecos

Jarrod and I arrived at the airport, excited but more than a little disorganized. It was funny, he and I have come to rely on the girls so much for getting us around. I guess that they really do make sure we get to where we are going. Or maybe it's just that we have travelled in larger groups mostly and cumulatively we have all the information we need. Or maybe it's that Jarrod is a bit neurotic, and that makes me think of all the things I don't know.

Whatever. I am excited for Morocco.

Nice man at hotel. Awesome hotel. Taxi driver. Toothless guide. Cats. Terrace dinner. Group culture. Culture shock. Romantic weekend. Hotel to ourselves.

We got in and the airport was small. Way small. It was a big tarmac and a little tiny tiny building. Like a warehouse with a sign small. There is a certain amount of distrust with us Americans and the reputation of Morocco. Understandably, Jarrod and I try to speak Spanish to throw them off. Although I can't imagine them being too thrown off given we are a tall white guy and a half-asian.

We found a cab driver and he showed us around. He was very nice and spoke in a heavy accent about the city and its character. Fes is the city of fountains btw. We were guided to our hotel by a toothless man that spoke no English or Spanish, but was very nice. He led us down some dark alleys, and we kind of freaked out. But he brought us to our very lovely hotel destination where we were greeted by an extremely nice host. He gave us tea, showed us our accomodations, and showed us good restaurants to eat at. We ate dinner at the top of a tower. It was very good. We went back down the windy roads that kind of smelled funny and wandered into our hotel. We had the whole hotel to ourselves. We joked that it was a romantic getaway. Given that we were the only people in that (very nice) hotel, it kind of was like that.

I did experience culture shock though. Everything. Just like you'd imagine, but nothing you've ever experienced. Jarrod and I keep reminding ourselves...it's Africa. A little thing is two women carrying one bag. I thought it was just a heavy thing, but then I saw other women doing it, and even little girls. Group culture. It's interesting the little mannerisms we pass on to our children.

There are lots of cats here.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Alien

Professor conference. Planet 51. Dani. Foster's Hollywood. Conti. Spanish.

Three short weeks remain in our program. It could be good or I could be shooting myself in the foot. I feel like I am losing my Spanish already.

Had a conference with my professor in government. She kind of sucks. But I think she's being a hard-ass, that she wants the class to study and the grades will improve drastically on the next test. It's frustrating because she has no checks on her power. She can do whatever she wants. And right now that is screwing me over. Not to mention the part where she was a condescending bitch to me, Alex, and Claire.

Perhaps she is right, perhaps I don't get all the concepts, but I certainly understand enough to know that I didn't deserve the grade I got.

Not really that important. It's just school. And I've been doing school for almost too long.

We decided to go to the movie Planet 51. A Spanish studio produced a good portion of it, so we get reimbursed for it. Cool. Anyways, I invited Dani to the movie and he was happy to tag along. Here's how the facebook conversation went between our group:

Laura: so we're going to planet 51 tonight, let's meet at 8.
Alex: can't I have ciclo until 9
Me: Dani is coming
Alex: I didn't want to go to ciclo anyways.

We went to foster's hollywood for dinner. An “American” restaurant but I have never seen it in the states. It is weird to think there are franchises that make food from a country but aren't from that country. I ate fast. We caught the movie.

Planet 51 was good, but I have a soft spot for animation. So all animation is automatically a 6 out of 10. Planet 51=8. way better than New Moon.
Professor conference. Planet 51. Dani. Foster's Hollywood. Conti. Spanish.

Three short weeks remain in our program. It could be good or I could be shooting myself in the foot. I feel like I am losing my Spanish already.

Had a conference with my professor in government. She kind of sucks. But I think she's being a hard-ass, that she wants the class to study and the grades will improve drastically on the next test. It's frustrating because she has no checks on her power. She can do whatever she wants. And right now that is screwing me over. Not to mention the part where she was a condescending bitch to me, Alex, and Claire.

Perhaps she is right, perhaps I don't get all the concepts, but I certainly understand enough to know that I didn't deserve the grade I got.

Not really that important. It's just school. And I've been doing school for almost too long.

We decided to go to the movie Planet 51. A Spanish studio produced a good portion of it, so we get reimbursed for it. Cool. Anyways, I invited Dani to the movie and he was happy to tag along. Here's how the facebook conversation went between our group:

Laura: so we're going to planet 51 tonight, let's meet at 8.
Alex: can't I have ciclo until 9
Me: Dani is coming
Alex: I didn't want to go to ciclo anyways.

We went to foster's hollywood for dinner. An “American” restaurant but I have never seen it in the states. It is weird to think there are franchises that make food from a country but aren't from that country. I ate fast. We caught the movie.

Planet 51 was good, but I have a soft spot for animation. So all animation is automatically a 6 out of 10. Planet 51=8. way better than New Moon.

It's nice to have a local guide us around, Dani knows all the shortest routes to every place now. And the train is much faster than the bus.

After the movie we went to Conti and played Conti until 2. Lots of fun. I really do enjoy all the time I spend here with everyone. It's funny how I can take for granted the presence of people and places so quickly. It has been 3 short months and I am already quite accustomed to my life here. Obviously it is time to shake things up. And too soon too.

It's nice to have a local guide us around, Dani knows all the shortest routes to every place now. And the train is much faster than the bus.

After the movie we went to Conti and played Conti until 2. Lots of fun. I really do enjoy all the time I spend here with everyone. It's funny how I can take for granted the presence of people and places so quickly. It has been 3 short months and I am already quite accustomed to my life here. Obviously it is time to shake things up. And too soon too.