Tuesday, May 19, 2009

don´t worry, i am alive

the last 2 days have been an absolute whirlwind. i don´t mean to worry you by saying that it is a miracle i haven´t just keeled over already.

london was incredible. i seriously think that i want to live there one day, if only for a few months or a year. the last night we were there we danced all night at a club, then went back to our hostel and chatted with the dude working behind the bar until about 5am. we have made some awesome friends along our journey, our new "mates" are so sweet. friday and saturday nights we averaged about 3 or 4 hours of sleep...and then we came to spain.

so our flight to barcelona was 3:15PM. we needed to take the tube to the train station that takes you to the airport. we left the hostel after having one last brew with the mates a little after 1. there was a mix up with our check in once we got to the airport, we were rushing around confused lugging our things, with 3:15 rapidly approaching. jill and i split off to try and pave the way for kristy and holly, just knowing (and hoping) that we´d just meet at the gate. my carry on was probably 40-50 pounds and apparently loaded with small liquids. jill and i watched impatiently as the lady methodically removed everything from my bag one by one, wiped it with some terrorist-finding wand, and then put it all back in. THEN we had to go through another security line and remove our shoes. picture this: jill and laura sprinting through the london airport BAREFOOT, screaming, "gate 16, do you see it?" and carrying insanely heavy luggage all the while. we were the last ones on the flight. there was NO way we should have made it.

we arrived in gerona and took an hour bus ride to our hostel in barcelona. this hostel is a little bigger and very friendly. we dropped off our things and grabbed some tapas and sangria on a patio and came back to the hostel around 11, just as the crew was headed out. we freshened up in the room for about 10 minutes and joined the 20 plus people headed out. we had a beer at a hole in the wall bar-lounge and met some great people. girls from tennesee who are just travelling around, here from italy and on the way to germany. guys from canada on a study abroad program. a dude from baylor! so many cool people, we all became instant friends. after that, we went to one of the biggest night clubs in barcelona...just to give you an idea: it didn´t even OPEN until 1AM, and the event that we were attending was called "nasty monday". we pay 10 euro to enter and redeemed our ticket for 1 free drink and then hit the dance floor. until 5AM.

we literally danced, jumped and sweated buckets until the sun came up. probably one of the funnest things i have ever done. the music was crazy loud and amazing. it wasn´t hip hop music, it was just DANCE music. (my fossil friends will appreciate this: imagine me doing my rave dance...for real...for 5 hours). unbelievable.

today we woke up and walked. and walked. such beautiful sights - we had some sandwiches at a little shop, stopped into some artsy stores, had some gelato and stopped at a supermarket for bread, cheese, salami and cerveca and hit the beach. we ate and slept in the sand. so beautiful.

with all this excitement, my body has decided to reject me. i woke up with an awful sore throat, aching muscles and an overall weakness that just got worse as the day progressed. by the time we left the beach, i was doneski. i felt like i had the flu (hopefully not swine) and so i layed down while the girls grabbed a bite. they brought me back a delicious wrap :) i´m really hoping i can recover by morning, i HATE being sick, and i hate it even more that i´m in one of the most beautiful places on earth. say a little prayer that i´m cured soon!

sad news: spain has a very bad pickpocketing problem. we experienced it today when holly got her wallet stolen right out of her bag that was strapped to her. money, id´s, passport, cards, it´s all gone. figuring that out right about now...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

i. love. london.

we are having an absolute blast over here. yesterday we saw buckingham palace, the houses of parliament, westminster abbey, the river thames...it has all been lovely. every scene is so picturesque. we've also mastered the london underground - you should see us navigating this city like champs. it's so much fun.

our hostel is pretty funny. the ground floor is a traditional english pub called "the green man", we actually checked in at the bar. everyone here is pretty nice to us even though we monopolize the bathroom (yes, that was singular). our room is on the top floor (of course), so in order to get there, we have to go up 2 ridiculously steep, narrow stairs. with all the walking and up and down, i feel like i've been on a stairmaster for the last 48 hours. this is the best workout i've ever had. or perhaps i should say that i SHOULD have been working out to prepare for this adventure. it's tiring however you look at it. 

the weather is nice, in the 60's with some wind and sprinkles every now and then. it's actually been sunny the last two days! really gorgeous. last night, we ate at this ultra chic restaurant in covent garden called fire and stone - we ordered a bottle of wine and some pizzas to share. jill and i had the "capetown", it was so delicious with a little kick to it. if you know me well enough you also know that i definitely paid the price for that meal the next morning...

then we went to a london dance club and did just that: danced our hearts out. they play more or less the same tunes over here, so we fit in nicely ;) we'll most likely do a repeat of that tonight, especially because today is jill's birthday! our group dynamic is wonderful, we all get along so well and it's making the trip that much more hilarious.

kristy pretty much summed it up last night when we got home, she said, "ladies, this is only night 2 of 11." 



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

i'm fleeing the country!!

Wednesday, May 13: depart Dallas 7:40PM

Thursday, May 14: arrive in London 10:30AM

Barcelona - Monday through Friday
Madrid - Friday through Monday 

Monday, May 25th: arrive in Dallas. the saddest day of my life.



Friday, May 8, 2009

so i have this crazy idea...

last night i went to a coffee shop called crooked tree with my friend joshulyn. we just sat and sipped and read our books and had a lovely time. i had such a happy and peaceful feeling just sitting on the couch, it was downright inspiring. as we were leaving, joshulyn says, "i think it would be so cool to own a place like this and just run it." i say, "YES! that is a dream of mine." i then get in my car and start thinking, why not?

and i haven't stopped thinking about it since. 

these days, we are under such pressure to work hard in school and get the best job you can and climb the corporate ladder. our generation has a heavy sense of entitlement and success is directly related to salary or position. our parents have been telling us, "you can do WHATEVER you want, you can be the BEST you can be." interpretation: you have the potential to have the best (respectable) JOB. while my parents did fuel the fire in that regard, my dad also stressed the importance of LOVING what you do. he says, "if you get up in the morning and dread going to work, that's a problem." don't get me wrong, i love my job. it has been the perfect fresh-out-of-college, learning, growing, maturing position for me. i won't be putting in my 2-weeks notice in the near future...

i realized that i have gotten everything i have ever WORKED for: this job. 
think about it: while you are a student, all you are concerned about is graduating to the next grade level. in high school, it's all about busting your ass to get in to the college you want (for me, i worked HARD to get in to Texas). once i got there, i chose a major and went for it. those 4 years i spent at UT i was, among other things, working towards a degree that will get me a job. so, my first 22 years of life i have been working toward this point of stability. welp, now i'm here...how anticlimactic! 

i have gotten everything i have ever worked for...but why? it seems like i have gotten everything i think i SHOULD be working for. it's all confusing in my head, but my conclusion is...i am making it my life's goal to own/run a coffee shop. that epitomizes what i want to DO in this life: work in a place where people come to inspire and be inspired. a place where art and music and words and harmony come together and dwell. a place where the whole point is to just be still. and drink coffee.

tara, another friend from fossil, has also had this dream for a long time. we planned and conspired all day. tara, joshulyn and i are basically business partners now. i'm making this my new project, it may take me til i'm 30, but someday i want to be in the coffee shop business. i'm getting giddy just thinking about painting the walls...


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

holy frick

i am leaving for the uk in 7 days and i have so much to do. i need to make sure i have a power converter or adapter thingy so i can plug in my laptop...but it's different in the uk and spain so i don't know what to do. i guess i'll just have to go to the apple store and have them help me (i love the apple store, by the way. such a calming atmosphere. i feel such positive energy and end up leaving swinging my arms wildly and clicking my heels). anyone taken their laptop overseas? hell if i know how that works.

we have booked all our hostels and flights. it took us FOREVER to decide on a hostel for London. actually about 8 hours. we seriously researched hostelworld.com from 12-8PM on sunday. the hostel we went with is called "Bestplace at Paddington". the little ad for the place said: BIG DRINKERS WANTED! STAY HERE IF YOU LOVE BEER! but it's in a great location and also close to a tube station. the cleanliness rating was pretty low and i'm scared. most of the reviews were positive, except the one that read, "there was crap in the toilet and the sheets on the bed gave me a rash, but other than that, it was a blast!!" awesome. i saw some sleeping bags at academy for about 8 bucks...so i may be investing. i'd like to avoid rashes altogether.

as i said in my tweet, we decided to cut out paris from the trip. i'm pretty sad because i've always wanted to visit, but i'll save it for another time. now we're going to spend 4 nights in London, 4 nights in Barcelona and 3 in Madrid. i am absolutely sure that we will be l-i-v-i-n.

i also need to do a pre-pack to make sure that i don't take too much. i need to keep it as light as possible because you know i'll be on a rampage at those london shops. kristy and i plan on packing early and practicing lugging out stuff around by taking a lap around our building. we'll look like tools but it'll be good preparation.

ok, so here's my list:

- buy adapter/converter/something to charge my 'lectronics.
- buy chlorox wipes for those dirty ass hostels.
- buy sleeping bag to avoid the clap.
- do 100 crunches every night. and maybe some moves that make my ass look less cheesy. 
- pack for the dry run and take a lap to make sure i can carry all my shart.
- watch happy-go-lucky.
- finalize packing. 
- take a shot.
- pop a tylenol pm.
- board flight and pass out.

just kidding. i don't mess with pills...