Merry Christmas!

25 12 2009

Happy Jesus Birthday, everyone! I made it home to Missouri, safe and sound (after an epically long travel period). I hope everyone is enjoying their winter break!

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Never Nudes!

12 12 2009

During our stay in Istanbul, my favorite (only) pair of jeans met their demise.  I’ve always been very hard on my clothes, climbing over things and running around doing various stupid things.  Unfortunately, my jeans just couldn’t keep up anymore.  By the end of the trip, the tears in the crotch-area of my jeans made their way halfway around the back of my thigh, necessitating tights underneath and leaving the jeans unfortunately irreparable.

RIP, level 99s.

Never fear, citizens of the world! I found another use for them.  Channeling Tobias Fünke from the television series Arrested Development, I am a proud owner/wearer of:

Never-Nudes!!

THERE ARE DOZENS OF US!! DOZENS!!





Nonprofits: Share the Love

12 12 2009

On my flight back from Istanbul, I happened to join a conversation with two young men who were on a cross-continental trip, spreading awareness for a non-profit based in the Bay Area. They started together in China and worked their way, eventually, to Istanbul, volunteering along the way. Check out the organization at this website:
http://www.worldwideopen.org/

It’s a very Christian organization, so take it as such. Regardless of affiliation, more good can always be done working together. Just some food for thought.





Lufthansa and Swiss Air >>>>>> Ryanair and Vueling

8 12 2009

Sometimes good flights just can’t be beat.

We made it back from Istanbul with bizarre stories and bazaar schwag in hand. But first: I must learn the entire history of northern Africa. See you later!





Londontown

3 12 2009

As mentioned previously, I spent last weekend in London with my friend Miranda, from B&B P2SF09.  It was an awesome time and reaffirmed everything I had previously learned about London from Love, Actually.

1.  They really like Christmas

2.  It’s kinda cold there

3.  They have cool accents.

So Miranda came and picked me up at Victoria Station, snowman donut in hand.  We proceeded back to her place (she goes to London School of Economics for a Master’s program, and lives in school housing).  After dropping my things off, we went to her pub and I met some friends.  Showing that she does, in fact, know me, Miranda then took me to her library.  It’s epically huge and well designed and probably has a consistent internet connection.  You know, many of the things that Spanish libraries lack.

The next day (Saturday), we got out of our sleeping bags, packed up our bins, loaded the trailer, signed a thank-you card and got on our bikes.

All of that previous sentence was a lie- except for the getting on our bikes part.

That’s right, Miranda’s back on the (wrong side of the) road.  I have to say, as awesome as it was to watch her get on the bike again (after a crash in Colorado leading to a broken collarbone/head injury), it was terrifying to do so in England, with the backwards-upside down-completely wrong direction of traffic.  We survived and rode to Hyde Park, enjoying being back on the road together.

Pay no attention to my looming shadow.

Afterwards we wandered along the Thames, stopping for lunch and banana-flavored hot chocolate along the way.  I saw some of the famouses: The Globe (after burning down several times), many marketplaces, St. Paul’s Cathedral, bridges galore, Westminster and Big Ben.

Westminster and Big Ben.
This is my token tourist picture

Saturday night, we took the advice of Miranda’s flatmate and paid online for this Secret Cinema event. Basically, you paid online and they send you an invitation, complete with address, time and costume suggestions  This time it was American 20’s (flappers, gangsters, etc).  So we get there and everyone is really into it- flowers, sequins, slang.  They take us into this fake speakeasy, where you can sit and watch showgirls dancing and tap shows, as well as hear live big band music.

Then comes the cinema part: they turned on the movie, this film from the 70s called Bugsy Malone starring a young Scott Baio and Jodie Foster.  All of the characters are kids, but act as adults- gangsters, dancers and working people, trying to make their way in the age of Prohibition.  The way the gangsters kill each other in the films is by cream pies in the face or by guns loaded with cream.

So the movie plays and at the climax they pause- all of the actors/dancers/live people are screaming “they’re coming, get ready” and they hand us ponchos and cream pies.  We all end up throwing the cream pies at each other in a mock-battle scene and then the show ends in a song and dance number.  The next morning, the song was still stuck in my head.

Would I have watched that movie otherwise? Probably not.  But it was a way cool experience and was a really ingenious idea.

Sunday morning, Miranda and I woke up and headed down through Picadilly Circus towards Buckingham Palace.  The parks were gorgeous, even on a dreary day and we got to see some of the guards.

Wintertime in London (I like parks.)

Then I met back up with Aley in Victoria Station (Aley had also been hanging around London), I parted ways with Miranda and caught my plane back to Barcelona.  The difference in temperatures on each tarmac was astounding.

I also had one of the best customs experiences, coming back into Girona, when the agent spoke to me in Spanish, complimented my fluency (ha!), and said that it was a pleasure to meet me.  It made me smile.

So now I’m off to Istanbul, tomorrow morning.  I guess by this point in time it’s almost mandatory for me to post this video:

We Love They Might Be Giants, right Casie?





Abrupt wake-up

1 12 2009

This morning, I was on the verge of waking up to my alarm when I somehow managed to pull my phone charging cord, causing the glass of water on my headboard to fall down onto my left temple, soaking my bed. It was an inauspicious start to a day.





To the point

29 11 2009

– Got back from London, where I visited Miranda and rode bikes 🙂
-Barcelona won over Madrid tonight, 1 – 0
– I am doing this race: buffepicrun.com