You know what’s funny? I get really annoyed when I go to my Google Reader and there are no updates. I’ve gotten addicted to blog reading and Dear Prudence (what? I don’t have access to that much TV) and when there is nothing to read blog-wise, I get sad. And yet, I hardly update at all. Hmm. Hypocrisy?
Anyway, not that much has been happening lately except my stress is easing. Yes, I’m still pretty busy but it now seems manageable. I’ve found that taking advantage of lunchtime really is the key to happiness (among other things.) And it’s great that I live so close to work!
Today, I actually went running during my lunch break. It wasn’t even planned! I was coming home for lunch to….ahem….nap….when I realized 1) I wasn’t that tired and 2) I wasn’t really that hungry. What can I do? I asked myself. Then I remembered my goal of running during the week, and realized that all my excuses had faded away. I was able to get home and start my run by 1:15, I ran for a half hour around a small park nearby (I went around it over and over. And not very quickly because the last time I ran around this particular park, I fell and got gravel stuck in both my palms. No one saw…but today tons of old people were in the park, so if I fell again it would have been pain AND humiliation.) The weather was so perfect. Perfect fall weather. Madrid has been so good to me weather-wise this year.
I finished running by 1:45, took a quick shower, got dressed, and STILL had an hour left to eat lunch and watch the Simpsons in Spanish (entertaining and educational) before I had to head to class. Talk about a perfect afternoon!
I’m going to try to take advantage of the lunch for more things, too. I usually nap on Fridays to give myself the energy to go out at night until 5 or 6:00a.m., and I hope to go running Tuesdays and Thursdays. But Mondays and Wednesdays I could do laundry, clean, buy groceries, etc. etc. All the things I don’t really want to do on Saturday but feel like I have to since I work so late during the week.
I’m still having tons of fun when I’m not working or doing chore-type things. Here are some photos to get a visual:
I promised Halloween photos, right? Here are some of my friends. Stacy is a “typical American”, Asa was a scary-looking girl, Marcus was a nerd (he didn’t actually have to dress up at all), and Annie was a bumblebee.
Sorry if this photo is a little scary. That’s Horti. He was…a….girl…clown…transvestite… I don’t know. A good conversation starter is what he was.
“But Julie,” you say, “why aren’t you in any of the photos?” Ah, well. I hate Halloween, and pictures of myself. So there you go.
Last weekend, I went with Annie, her cousin, and some friends to a soccer game of Spain versus Argentina. It was really fun! It was only a friendly match, but all the fans were really into it. It was nice to see Spaniards so proud of being Spanish…usually that’s a little taboo here. Also, I learned that they finally added words to their national anthem! They handed the words out on a small piece of paper before the game so everyone could sing along. The paper says “Keep this for another time.” I thought that was funny. Anyway, some photos:
This is Annie and her cousin, Brad.
Annie and me.
A photo of a guy in the crowd waving a big Spanish flag. We were all given little Spanish flags on our seats. I loved hearing the cheers and seeing how excited the crowd was, even though there was nothing but pride riding on the outcome!
And that’s pretty much life. Big focuses lately are on:
-Improving Spanish. I feel like I should be so great at Spanish right now, but I still find myself making grammatical errors every day. I’ve also been told more than once that I need to improve the fluidity of my speaking. I hope that this will come naturally. I speak a fair amount with my co-workers and with my roommate, and of course my Spanish friends (whom I haven’t had much time to hang out with lately…whoops.) Little by little.
-Trying to stay healthy. I don’t think that happens by going to dinner at a friend’s house, eating a ton of food, and then having to drink a ton of beer/liquor afterwards in order to get a buzz. (My activities of the past few weeks.) I’ll keep working on it.
All in all, things are good.