Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Lord sustains me.

¡Hola Todos!

Sorry I have not been able to update my blog at all lately. Just to give you a sound bite of my busy life over here in España I'll give you minute's worth of break down of this week for me. 

This week only includes Monday through Wednesday.

This is all that was due.  

Three page intensive analysis over Space by Chad Davidson.
A poem imitating Frederico García Lorca's writing style.
Write close to 12 journal entries in Spanish. (only 4 to 5 sentences each).
Oral Exam- yes I ignorantly signed up for the earliest time. I was the first one.
Project/Skit due in Spanish to perform for the class.
Written Exam-which is the final in my Spanish class.

This isn't including the hours I like to dedicate to creeping on Facebook, keeping up with loved ones back home, faithfully updating my Twitter, and checking updates in the theknot.com. Not to mention the love of skype and email.

So soon to come will be a nice update of La Rabida where Columbus began his journey across the ocean blue. Also, stay tuned for how my Valentines went, my weekend last weekend, and today I'm headed to Portugal for 4 days, so after Sunday there will be many blogs to come!!!

xoxo. miss every single one of you.


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Poem from Leaving Home


The fifth I leave home
Washing down my last cup 
Of American coffee. I turn 
Around to wave to those I love. 
Then I board the commercial plane 
Where I sit and take my place. 

In my written travels, Spain has a place,
Though I will miss my Texas home 
And the comforting Panhandle plain. 
The flight attendant fills my cup 
As I finish Eat Pray Love 
Through the pages I turn. 

Restless, I toss and turn 
Trying to find a place 
To daydream of the one I love. 
My mind wonders to a new home 
I will see once I depart the plane 
As the attendant takes my empty cup.  

In the airport bathroom I cup
Handfuls of warm water. I turn 
The knob off and use the plain
White sheets to dry the wet place 
On the counter. I pray my home
In Spain is inviting and full of love.  

The kind of comforting love 
Overflowing from a cup 
That understands how far I am from home. 
The day is here. Down the stairs I turn
And find my new mama standing in place 
With a friendly expression. How can I complain?  

The regret of boarding the plane 
Fades away as I gain love
For this stranger.  I replace 
Shaking hands and cup 
Her shoulder and turn 
My cheek for a kiss before heading home.  

This place remains unfamiliar. I miss my cup 
of plain coffee and laughing with those I love, 
who anticipate my return home.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Grenada- February 5th and 6th

Friday morning we met at Hotel Seville Center. Only a 20 minutes walk from my house. I sat next to Greg and he gave me about 1.1 days worth of outstanding music. We were using a zip drive to transfer it from his computer to mine. After the three hour bus ride, we arrived in Grenada at 10am.

The second we stepped off the bus we ran with our tour guide to make it on time to enter in into La Alhambra. The Alhambra is a fortress built by Moorish rulers. Then the Christians took over around the 1530's and Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor decides, "I think I'd like a Palace built just for me in here." So they built this elaborate palace with arabic designs encrusting every crevasse and surface area. It is two stories high with beautiful wooden windows just like in Aladdin (in the garden scene when Jasmine puts the bird in the bird cage...you know what I'm talking about Disney fans). In the courtyard of his palace there is a Washington-pool-like pond in front. It feeds the fountain that feeds the pants for irrigation.

Charles V also wanted gardens to peruse through all day long. There are miles of beautiful eloquent gardens. The trees are grown and groomed to makes hall ways, tunnels, and walls. The pathways are made up of pebbles formed into whimsical designs. Though the flowers aren't weren't in bloom with Grenada barely peaking out of Winter into early Spring, the gardens are said to be in the top 5 of all gardens with the outrageous booming of countless different kinds of flowers.

We walked through the majority of them before heading to the Cathedral. We actually got to see the tombs of Ferdinand and Isabella.

Right outside of the cathedral, Dr. Ingis showed us the spice market. I've never seen so many wicker baskets full of seasonings, seeds, leaves, grains, dried flowers, and more. Students bought saffron like it was the last bit in the entire world. They bought enough ground Spanish vanilla to last 50 years.

After all the traveling and tours, I was exhausted. I slept for an hour before we were to go back out with the group.

Later, that evening a small group of eight gathered at a coffee shop in my all time favorite plaza. I've yet to figure out the name, but I'm happy to describe it to you. To get there, we walked through the small alley ways of the moroccan markets. Bursting out in this open area, the building have a vibrant bold color, yellow, green, orange, blue, and different shades of red. Old and tall trees stood as tall as the 3 story buildings. They were filled with singing sparrows. It would have taken me days to count them if they were standing in a row. To accent the scene even more, circling the plaza were about eight different flower shops with fresh flowers overflowing into the sidewalks reminding me of my much missed home. The hour passed, and the only ones remaining were Greg, me, and the Poch family (Dr. Poch, his wife Meghan, and his two sweet daughters, 2 and 5 years of age with blonde gentle curls). We walked by this man holding a bouquet of balloons. Poor girls... they were gawking but their dad explained why they couldn't have one. Instead, he let them ride the carousel.

This carousel was home-made. The carriage, benches, horses, and others were hand carved wood and polished. The white canvas decorated the top of the exterior, and baby toys were hung by ribbons for the young ones to play with as they rode. Once all of the little ones were settled on the carousel, the man jumped on his bicycle that acted as the motor of the ride. As he peddled away, the Lion King's song played loudly in Spanish. I snapped pictures of his girls and enjoyed the moment of thinking I'll get to enjoy this moment again with my own children.

For dinner, all of six of us plus Dr. Inglis went to a Moroccan restaurant. It was authentically decorated with Arabic decor. We sat on chairs with red cushions as we drank the best lemonade I've ever had in my life. It was mixed with mint green tea and the lemonade was hand squeezed. I had lamb Tajin with prunes, apricots, and almonds soaked in a savory sauce with nuts and spices sprinkled on top. Dad- yes this was mouth watering delish. Worth every bit of my 15 euros.

Grenada has by far made it to my top 5 places I've been.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

again sacrifice or withhold

Remember Braids and Eyes?
Last night, after savoring the last few minutes
Talking with loved ones from home,
Greg and I ran to his apartment
Through the beginning of a soft rain storm.

Talking about Rocío
Walking down the stairs
We ran into Rocío,
Greg's house mom.
A sweet hello-goodbye
And a few extra Spanish words
Let me slip out of the complex politely.

He let me borrow her umbrella,
She didn't mind.
I was to "bring it back tomorrow"
And to walk quickly home.

Ten minutes into thought
A man ran holding his daughter
Only about four or five.
They had no umbrella
No protection to distance the
From their face.
Though the small girl laughed
As she bounced along in her fathers arms.

I hesitated thinking of my own umbrella
I turned back and started after them
Then I thought to myself
What about Rocío's umbrella?
She will want it come tomorrow.

Do I spare this umbrella
That I need very little
To spend ten on a new one
The next day?
Do I simply turn
Back around and avoid
The eyes and the young black braid.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

skydive me.

Its official.

I'm going to go back to the company that I signed up with to go to Morocco and ride a camel and get my money back!!!! No time for spitting camels at the moment (even though I still think that is sooooo stinkin' cool). I'm going to use the money to go sky diving instead. I'm not sure all the details. But what I do know...

You meet up in Interlaken, Switzerland and they pick you up wherever you are..a hostel, the train station, etc.. Then they fly you around the swiss alps for 45 minutes...so beautiful. Then, they provide the equipment and training lessons. Then off you jump!!!! The price includes one picture when you jump and you can pay extra for a video. (not sure if I am going to do that)

Anyway, go to www.skydiveswitzerland.com if you want more info (: I'm going to post a few pictures from their website.

weight weight weight

is it that my house mom cooks all this fried food
or that our meals are twice the size I'm used to
is it my self-esteem because I'm not getting endorphins
Is it that I have the same clothes
that I wear over and over
or the fact that I am not as active

Man I need to have the drive to lose a little
eat less
run more
look away from the snacks

Okay here's the game plan:

eat half of whatever she is serving.
don't eat the complimentary bread
that goes with every meal
in the basket.
Say NO to her fried helpings
and breakfast treats

Dont eat chips no matter
how much I like salt and vinegar.
No buying any type of snack
in between meals.
Save money and cuts down the intake

Drink more water.
I barely drink a half a glass during meal times!

Goal: lose 20 pounds by October! anddd go.

ps. Its not that I have a low self esteem and think that I'm ugly.. its that I don't want to let myself go. I want to FEEL healthy and FEEL good about the reason why I look thin. Not in an unhealthy way do I dwell on this or how to lose the weight. (: just for those with concerns.