Friday, January 27, 2012

On the Verge of Death

So I think my laptop is on its last legs. In the last couple weeks it has begun restarting at random and graphics card is doing funny things... I would love it if it lasted for the rest of 2012 (that would help me finish school) but I think that might be too much to ask. It is almost 5 years old after all. I use it so much right now to communicate with friends here in Spain because we are all too cheap to use our cell phones frequently. I use it to work on my Spanish and botany projects for school when I get back in the fall. I use it to Skype! Ahh! I am not too worried because Evan has his computer here as well, which I could use for all of the above, but his computer is his precious and he can be very possessive of it (think Gollum). Thinking about spending copious amounts of time trying to get him to let me use his computer sounds difficult.

As much as I love my MacBook, I don't want to spend a grand on a computer again, so I will probably end up with a PC laptop that costs about half as much. I have always been scared of them because of the amount of viruses they contract but that is where Evan comes in handy because computers are his specialty.

I am really bummed today because I was all set to go to Valldemossa today and collect some lichens for my project but it is raining! Overall I am happy that it is raining because it doesn't rain very much here and the rain feels cleansing to me. And it helps wash the dog shit off the sidewalks, which is always a plus. I really do need to get outside of the city and see some nature. It has been a while! We haven't been on a hike since before we left for our winter vacation! On Sunday (if the weather is nice) I will be doing some volunteering at a community garden.

Our landlady, Paquita, got us a heater and now it is nice and toasty in our room! Hooray! The moment Evan had it assembled and turned it on it sucked up a piece of lint and shorted out one of the circuits. At that moment I was thinking "Spain, por favor no me jodas asi!" but then Evan took the whole thing apart and was able to fix it. Yay for handymen! The the light burned out in our room and Evan goes to change it and the bulb looks like a strange crack pipe so hopefully someday we will find an equivalent bulb somewhere. Spain, por favor no me jodas asi....

I think now today will consist of watching The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and sending some overdue emails to friends. And then tonight we celebrate our friend Italis' birthday!

Oh yeah, and I am going to run and do some strength training (with water bottles due to limited resources) because I feel horribly out of shape!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Proud Wife Moment!

I had a proud wife moment yesterday when Evan asked me to take him shopping to look for a pea coat! He had no idea that they were called pea coats and had to describe what he was looking for to me so I could figure out what he was talking about. And we found a nice wool one on sale! Hooray!

I ALMOST titled this post "Proud Girlfriend Moment" but then realized that that would be incorrect. How sad that I still can't get this straight even after 6 months of being married?!

I guess after you have been together for 4 years and living together for 2, "married" is just a new word that describes the way you already were.


Monday, January 9, 2012

Back from vacation!

It feels so good to be back in our little room in our apartment in Palma. We traveled for exactly 14 days and it was extremely fun but definitely felt like 2 weeks. Evan and I both got colds (and still have) but we still managed to see a lot of Milan, Nice, Montpellier, Barcelona, and Paris.

We traveled with my in-laws, Travis and Linda, for the first week of the trip because they had been here for a week before we left visiting us on Mallorca. That was a bit difficult because it was there first time traveling around Europe and they are used to warm, tropical vacations with beaches and warm weather. Using the metro and traversing large cities isn't exactly something they had done before. The beginning was pretty stressful but towards the end we all got the hang of it and had a great time.

I didn't really care for Milan that much (I thought we were going to die in a car crash on the way over to the hotel from the Milan airport) and the city was really large and didn't really have a very nice old town area to explore. I loved hearing Italian (which is incredibly similar to Spanish) and eating delicious Italian food. I am really motivated to try and learn some more Italian for when we go to Trieste and meet some of my Italian family! I adopted a new Italian grandmother on the flight over that I sat next to. We had some cute and choppy Italian/Spanish conversations (Me speaking Spanish and she speaking Italian). Like all Italian grandmothers, she offered me some of her food (the best way to show affection right?) and kissed me on the cheeks when we parted ways. A great start to the trip!

After 2 nights in Milan we took a train to Nice where we stayed for 2 nights. Nice was very nice (ha ha) and had a beautiful beach, but it kinda reminded me of Las Vegas in that it had a lot of hotels and casinos and was very big and flashy. Everyone that we met there was really nice but French is really hard to understand and reads a lot like Spanish or Italian but sounds NOTHING like it.

I was really sad because we only stayed in Montpellier for one night and it seemed like a really cool city. It was beautiful and a lot older than Nice and just had a really good vibe. There were some amazing street performers that drew huge crowds and were great to watch/listen to. It kinda reminded me of Arcata because there were a lot of young transients (probably Trustifarians) around and just had a really relaxed feeling.

The Eve of the New Year we took the train to Barcelona, where we stayed for 4 nights. Barcelona was a little overwhelming because it is a huge city and there are TONS of people there! We also stayed on La Rambla, which is probably the loudest street in the city. The most memorable thing we saw was the huge cathedral, La Sagrada Familia, that was designed by Gaudí and is HUGE and they have been building it since 1887! Que loco!

Our last stop was Paris, where we stayed for 4 days. We saw everything we want to there: Versailles, the Louvre, The Eiffel Tower, Champs-Elysee, Arc de Triumphe, etc. That amount of time was perfect because we were really burnt out and kinda sick so we were able to sleep in almost everyday and still have plenty of time to check out the sights. And it helped too that it is the off season and the lines were quite short. I was getting really sick of going out to eat at that point so we went to a really cute "patisserie" everyday to get sandwiches and delicious bread. We also bought had salami left over from Milan, cheese, and tons of fruit that I bought a close grocery store. Bon appetit!

We got in yesterday evening at 7 and I had to teach today for 5 1/2 and I did not feel so hot. Luckily my workload just goes down from Monday so I have more time to relax. I am happy to have a couple months of downtime before the next travel adventure to Trieste! Or who knows, maybe we will sneak in a weekend trip to another part of Spain. :)

Evan and I are starting a map wall in our room with all the tourist maps we have collected in our travels. I have a feeling it will be quite large by the time we head back to the States.