Saturday, September 25, 2010

Everything's a changin'

Hello All!

The new and improved site is ready!  Follow this link to...

Anywhere There's an Airport 

I'm now my own dot com - so grown up!

See you on the other side!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Thoughts from the first plane

Wrapped in love.

I sit here alone. Literally. Somehow I end up in a row all by myself. No chatty neighbors. No crying babies. All by myself. 

Yet, I'm not. I'm wrapped in love. Tears in my eyes. Excited for this adventure. Scared to miss those I love the most. 

I'm wrapped in gifts of love. 

A scarf from my mother, bought with my move in mind. "Every time you wear it, it will be like I'm hugging you" she said.

Tears fall. 

A ring, from the family. From my favorite jewelry store. Silver wraps around my finger, yet doesn't meet to close the circle.  On the ends... hearts.  Here and there. Me and them.

I am wrapped in their love - and couldn't be filled with more gratitude.    

America says...

Good Morning and Goodbye.

I believe everything happens for a reason... but really, what is the purpose of this:

This morning - the morning of my departure - I open the last of my U.S mail.  A ticket - From the City - for $154!!!

"What the F I say" - before 7 am - right in from of Mom and Dad.

While being the responsible sober designated driver, with my favorite high school comrades in the car, on the night of our 10 year reunion - I failed to come to a full and complete stop at 2:58 a.m. - on a deserted street - where I was harming no one - and I like to think saving some lives.

So really - thank you America.  Thank you traffic cameras.  

Good Morning and Goodbye to you too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Breakdowns Included.

  • Once in a lifetime experience!
  • Love - Travel - Adventure. 
  • Support from family and friends. 
  • See the world with the most knowledgeable and handsome guide.
  • Breakdowns included.

Moving:  Cited as one of the most stressful events in life after death of a spouse or family member.  Yikes!  It's a good thing I have moved...oh... about 18 times in my life.  For this type A chickie I'd say I've done pretty well in the stress management department.

I've had my moments.  They just sneak up.  One moment I'm fine, working through my "moving to a new country for dummies" book (kidding - but actually - I wonder if that book exists) and the next moment my fears and anxiety are pouring out my eyes. 

What can you do?  I'll tell you... you can count your lucky stars and start a thankful list.  Because really, I am the luckiest girl in the world.

I am thankful for: 
  • The Spaniard - for a million reasons - I won't bore you with the sap here.
  • My family and friends - so supportive and excited for my adventure.
  • Laughter - on Sunday I had lunch with my friends / neighbors.  I laughed so hard it hurt.
    Best Neighbors Ever.
  • Brothers - Mine refuses to say that I am moving - only that I will be traveling for a while - it's all about perspective.
  • Technology - even when you break your lifeline to the world - the fact that I will be completely connected to everyone, all of the time, while living on a new continent makes me feel as though I am right down the street.

So as for the above position...breakdowns and all... I'll take it!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Most of you know about my little incident by now, but I just had to post it here to document this part of the journey.  The journey that could never begin without a fully functioning smart phone.

Dear Friends and Family,

Long story short:  

Please send me all of your phone numbers.  Cell, work, home - whatever you want me to have.

Long story kind of short:

I was on mile 5 of my 16 mile training run this morning when it happened. Thoughts of the NY Marathon filled my mind while Kanye filled my ears, having a grand ol' time!  My phone placed securely in a ziplock bag - as usual.  Well... not so usual, moisture gets in.  (I say moisture because no one wants to read about my sweat - well - there - I said it, sweat. :)

So, moisture = water damage = not salvageable = new phone.  1.5 weeks before I move to Spain.

Which by the way, I already have an iPhone in Spain waiting for my return.  I debated bringing that one back this last trip.  "Nah...what would I need that for" I said.

Yes... seriously.
Exactly how I felt. Right here.

Update:  All is right with with the world.  Working phone once again in hand.  Feels soooo good! :)  Yes, addiction is an evil thing.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

All the cool kids are doing it.

When I was in high school all of the cool kids were a part of student government.  Therefore I was too.  All of the cool kids ran for class council positions.  Therefore I did too.

High School was a blast!  Of course filled with all of the self-doubt, outfit anxiety and “will anyone sit with me at the lunch table” you would expect.  But nonetheless, I look back on that time with fond memories, broken hearts and all.

Holding the position of VP of the Senior Class was cool for many reasons.  My best friend was President and we got to hand out “Senior of the Week” awards every Monday.  Not to mention our pictures were displayed on the wall outside the attendance office.  Like I said…cool.

It remained to be cool until about a year ago.  It was brought to my attention that a little thing call our 10 year reunion was right around the corner. Guess who was automatically one third of the planning committee?  To say I was less than enthusiastic about this would be an understatement.

But like most things in life, it all worked out for a reason.  The reunion fell two weeks before my big departure. I was able to see friends that live around the country, and the entire weekend was a huge success!

In typical high school fashion the weekend included everything from “what should I wear” fashion shows and slumber parties - to drinks, dance parties and 3 a.m. dinners.  And oh yeah, two girls wearing the same dress. Like I said... typical high school....very cool.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Moving in with Mom and Dad.

Honestly... never thought I'd say those words.

For the next 3 weeks I'm living with the parents.  There are a few things to consider here:

I have not lived with anyone... anyone... in about 6 years.  Not a dog, cat or fish.  Hell, even my basil plant lives on the porch.

I could look at this time with fear and anxiety... but I actually think this time at home is all part of the master plan.

When I get to Madrid I will be living with the spaniard.  We have all heard the horror stories that moving in with your significant other can illicit.  I figure living with mom and pops for 3 weeks will be my boot camp class on sharing.  My crash course in cohabitation, if you will.

Since returning to the states 2 weeks ago my condo has been dispersed throughout the city.  My wonderful friends have taken everything from couches to clothing.  Ironing board to books.

This whole process has been surprisingly seamless.  The spaniard says it's because I am a master planner... I tend to agree.

So... How Many Suitcases Does It Take To Pack Your Life? ... 5.  My life fits into 5 suitcases and 6 boxes.

Progression in pictures:

Bye bye coffee table
... and dining room table.
Organization for storage and shipping.
Empty dresser -- > enter boxes.
All gone.
A special thank you goes to my dad.  He removed all of his suits from the guest room closet for me.  You see, it is he, not my mom that needs two closets.

Like father - like daughter.

Without his help,  this next disaster in organization might not be possible.

All stuffed in.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Through Each Others Eyes

Our last night in Barcelona was spent on the rooftop terrace of Hotel 1898

Amazing views, serene setting... mediocre cava.  Can't have it all.

The evening was perfectly relaxing with fantastic conversation.  I recall debating the cultural differences that each of our respective countries brings to world's business table.  Love.

Our evening also involved an impromptu photo shoot.

Friday, August 27, 2010


Is it appropriate to insist on bringing all my 3 inch heels when moving to a city where I will be walking at least a mile to get anywhere...

Is it appropriate to insist on bringing my favorite smoothie straw...that just so happens to be covered in red penises - thank you bachelorette party!

Is it appropriate to bring baking utensils and mixing bowls when my kitchen doesn't even have an oven...yet...

Is it appropriate to bring my favorite over-sized, long sleeve, t-shirt - stolen from my high school boyfriend?

Regardless... it's all happening.  What's "appropriate" anyway?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

"The only thing you need to get a another date."

I don't know how many times I have heard that the grocery store is a great place to meet someone.  You can tell a lot about someone by what's in their cart:

- Fruit, Veggies, whole grain cereal - Yes, please!

- Double stuffed Oreos,  a case of Bud Light, and a case of frozen Hungry Man Meals - NO, thank you!

Part of the screening process can easily be done with a quick scan of the eyes.  This picking someone up at the market was always a mystery to me.  It had never happened.  And it always seemed awkward.  How do you start a conversation and not look like a total creeper?

Well, it happened. 

I was perusing the olive oil section.  Reading the back of the "imported" oils to see where they are really from.  For the record, most imported oils are bottled in Tampa, FL - really.

So as I am reading this very nice looking gentleman starts looking at the oil too.  He so cleverly asks me, "is there something that you are reading that I should know before making my oil selection?" See, not a creeper at all.  I go on to explain my thesis regarding oil production and bottling.  How most Italian oils are made with Spanish olives, and how I should know this because I just got back from Spain.

The conversation continues with how he loves Spain.  I throw in that I better love it too because I am moving there. (All a part of my conversation plan)  Why are you moving he asks.  I so eloquently and concisely tell the story of meeting my love.  I mean, we wouldn't want this seemingly nice young man to try to get my phone number.  I was trying to spare the awkward, "actually, I am seeing somebody" comment - which let's face it - in most of these instances is usually a lie.

All in all a nice interaction with a nice person.  There still is such a thing as human kindness.  And I know I better soak up all of these American niceties while I can.

So this all goes to show... the only thing you need to get a date... is another date.  Thank you Carrie Bradshaw.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Home Again, Home Again

I am back home on this side of the pond.  As I write that I am thinking the "this side" comment will soon not say anything about my actual location.

I am at my home on the west side.  West side of the Atlantic.  East side of the U.S.

For simplicity let's use the Atlantic as the middle of the universe.  Florida = west side.  Madrid = east side.  Agree?  Agree.

Crunch time.  1.5 weeks to move out of my condo. Donate and give away all of my worldly possessions.
Begin the process of obtaining a residence visa for Spain.  I hope the Spanish Consulate agrees that I will be an asset to their country.

Breathe in - Breathe out - One step at a time - Know that it will all work out - Remember why I'm choosing this choice...

and when all else fails find serenity remembering this...


and this...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

This is my life - Part 2

How do you work this microwave / convection oven / whatever this damn kitchen appliance is?

It´s hot - It´s freakin HOT! Where is the central air? And why doesn't anyone run the AC that they have?

No sardines... means NO sardines.

When I smile, say hello, goodbye, thank you, whatever... it´s nice to be acknowledged.

Customer Service. Anyone? Anyone??

Life will be easier when I am fluent in this language. Shop owners and restaurant managers beware!

This is my Life.

First cooking experience in the kitchen. Calabaza squash. After a few grunts, groans, and choice words, it was a success.

Monday, August 16, 2010

This is my life.

As I looked at him on the train I realized ... I am the happiest and most content I have ever been.

My mom is probably right. Home will now be wherever we at together. This is my life.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Boy Scouts Honor

I've been traveling with a cheap pair of ear plugs for over 3 years. I believe they were purchased for my trip to Kenya. Preparation for whatever animal might keep me awake - not that anything could mute the morning rooster, and not that ear plugs help whatsoever with stifling heat.

The ear plugs remained unused...until this Friday. It was just your average weekend festival. Crappy Barcelona bands (the spaniards words) - opening act - 1 a.m.

I almost lost my mind.

My NY training schedule dictated a 10 mile run on Saturday. Knowing this had to be accomplished on a treadmill already had me teetering on the edge.

Thank God for the remembrance of the ear plugs.

Always be prepared. Boy Scouts honor.

10 miles of roof tops :)

10 miles of success!

... or so they say.

They say the best way to see a city is to walk it. Well, I have seen Barcelona. From the Park Güell at the top of the city to the vegan gelato shop tucked away in the Gótico district. Again, the universe smiles :)

This city is full of history. All 3000 years worth. History that I could never remember or repeat. It's a good thing I've had the most handsome guide. He somehow knows the history of everything. Every building, monument, architect and cathedral - every war, battle and landmark event.

His knowledge of spanish history is enough to impress even the most astute history buff. But he knows just as much about every other country spanning the globe, from Spain to the United States. The long way... through Asia.

So the best way to see a city really is to walk it ... or so they say.