Lori in Torrox.
Lori in Torrox.
My mother is going to be boarding a plane an hour from now leaving from Green Bay, Wisconsin headed to Malaga, Andalucia. And I will be heading on a bus 9 hours from now to be picking her up at the airport.I’m terribly excited to see her, like I bet she is to see me too. She says she spent all day running around for me which makes us even for all the cleaning I did today. This place sparkles. I was literally blinded by the light that enters from the window as it bounced off the clean shiny floor, so much that I got distracted and the grape in my hand aimed for my mouth fell to ground. It was past the 10 sec rule when I picked it back up and ate it,…but the floor was SO clean…so that’s is an automatic time extension.
I didn’t touch my room though. Its horrible, theres crap everywhere. Just the way I like it! But I figure like that my mom is less likely to enter it.
Hopefully tonight I’ll be able to cancel my internet connection, but I’m not even sure I will be able to. I called about it yesterday -and stupid vodafone whom I despise – the woman I was talking to suddenly in the middle of helping me was like, ‘ Oh something happened. Call back later.’ She promptly hung up the phone.
Well I had BEEN trying to MAKE something happen. But O.K.
Either way though with my mom coming I probably wouldn’t have social networked much anyways.
She’ll be here for around 2 weeks, and I’m on vacation from school, so it works out well.
**A quick note to FB friends: remember that post awhile ago I made about getting drunk and buying plane tickets? Here’s the result**
Lori had said she wants to see Paris.
She HAS to see Paris. She can not survive without Paris. She needs Paris. She also said she’d pay for my plane ticket to get there. I’m in.
Yet this mother of mine has never been to Spain, and it would be a real tragedy to miss out on some major places.
Looking through flight tickets…its like a hobby, or a favorite pastime of mine now. I enjoy checking and cross checking airlines, dates, cities,prices. Sometimes I feel like George Clooney in that awful travel movie he was in, where in one scene the whole dialog is using Airport codes. ORD is like my home, I hate MIA, I’d love to get to know JFK, MEX has a nice food court, CUN is smaller than I imagined, and ATW just…really?
So I got all caught up in the excitement of my own enthusiasm/ little bit of jealousy of my friends traveling and went on this crazy search for the perfect trip for my mother and I. I found it. I double checked it. Triple checked it. Plastic out. AND DONE. And pass out.
Next morning I thought to myself. OOOooh what did I do? I was too nervous to check my inbox, really hoping that I had pulled everything off ( NOT like Sevilla-Cadiz)!
But. I’m amazing and I did pull it off.
Ok…Here’s my drunk genius…and what I’ll be up too in the days to come…
Tuesday we are going to head on over to Barcelona from Malaga. BUT only spend one night there, because on Wednesday from Barcelona we head to Paris. We have 3.5 days there (short, sweet, and avoiding the possibility and likelihood of spending too much money) then heading back to Barca for 3 more days to get to know the city! Its perfect,…and for only around $200 a pop for each of us, thats not bad. Thats really not bad at all,..and the flights are nice times too. Just got to work on accommodation now. I have the first night in Barcelona reserved already…but tomorrow I’ll finalize the rest of the trip, both cities are big meaning we have options.
So expect pictures to come in the future. And wish me luck…I’m really excited, I mean crazy excited to have a visitor- let alone my mother, but I’ve never really traveled with her before, let alone SO much one-on-one time. I’m not even going to use the ‘B’ word…NOT THAT ONE…B for bonding. This isn’t bonding. Thats way too Dr.Phil for me. I think we both just want good company, and good times. I’m positive we can pull that off.
On that note…I’m about to disappear for a bit…literally
2012 Carnival in Cadiz video
Miracles happen everyday. The fact I woke up semi-functional today at 7:30am and was able to get myself to the train station on time was a miracle. I’m actually really impressed with myself, because I was kinda internally betting that I wasn’t going to be able to pull it off.
Last weekend. Id say around 4pm. Sitting around the house not doing too much of anything. Bowl of freshly popped popcorn in my lap. Glass of Rioja by my side. I was slowing stewing in irritability over my finances, or lack of finances rather. I guess I’m not surprised, dispite my meticulous pre-Spain budgeting and planning, I just didn’t think it would happen already by February.
SO its mid-February and winter right. Not even Spain isn’t exempt from cold nights and harsh winds, and last weekend, I couldn’t help but let my mind run off to a beautiful paradise of an island. An island not only abundant with all the essential staples of a beach paradise…clean white sand, warm clear water,scattered shady palm trees, little huts that serve cold, strong and delicious Tequila Sunrise’s…but ALSO an island that has not an amazing nightlife- but one of the worlds best nightlife’s. Talking Guinness book of world records here. Huge clubs open all night, top notch DJs, gorgeous people everywhere,…a real international party. Well, a place like that exists in Spain. Its called Ibiza.
That was my “mission” I guess. To turn 25 in Ibiza. I’m not normally a huge party person, let alone on my birthday, last year I stayed home alone all day by choice. Lame. So anyways, I thought it would be quite the thing to say I went and had -hands down- one of the biggest craziest Birthday parties ever.
Well looking at my finances its not going to happen,…and at this point I don’t even care that much anymore. YET I can’t leave Spain without having a proper crazy fiesta, and Spain is full of festivals and fiestas. It just so happens that Carnival starts this weekend, and while it may not be as big as in Rio, its quite the event, especially in Cadiz, a port town in Andalucia, about 5 hours from Torrox. Got to thinking, got to drinking, got to searching for some bus tickets and devised this elaborate plan to go to Cadiz Thursday the 16th after school, leaving from Malaga, stopping over in Sevilla and then returning home on Sunday afternoon. In my search for bus tickets there was one ticket left on the way from Malaga to Sevilla.
Thats a sign. Its a good price too. Whip out the plastic. Its a done deal.
YES! so now I was left with about a week till party time! And no place to stay….and no open hostels.
….full house, sleeping on the floor , pretty much guaranteed an amazing time and totally worth it.
Thursday after school I got my bus tickets, I got my suitcase with blankets packed, I got my “couch” confirmed and waiting so here it goes.
First step, get to Malaga.
Second step, get to Sevilla.
Third step, almost there…..let’s go to Cadiz!
Mmmmm,…not so accomplished.
In my brilliant last minute epiphany for Cadiz I failed to realize I was booking tickets in Sevilla from two distinct bus stations a significant distance from each other.
So last night I found myself with all my stuff trying to scramble as fast as I could to the other station, didn’t make it on time, and all the other buses were full. Story repeated at the train station.
Well I no longer talk with the couch surfer I stayed with in Sevilla. Long story. But fortunately I know a friend of a friend, and I although I hadn’t met this person before we had spoken over the phone and exchanged a few texts before. SO I sent him a text and he said after he was done with work at 12 he’d meet me for a drink. Sounded good, and it gave me some time to find a hostel, which in the end wasn’t as easy. I was feeling pretty stingy and difficult I wasn’t going to settle for any room over 15 Euros. It took me a long time walking around to find such a place…but I did, and for 11 Euros I got to stay in this really nice hostel which also came with a free drink, so I still had some time to kill before meeting up with the friend so I got my free drink,…which turned into a free sangria, a free glass of beer, and 3 free shots.
SO I was pretty happy already, and even more happy to go out and meet this friend of a friend. He is a super nice, outgoing and generous guy, and I got to meet his other friends. It was a great evening.
Needless to say I drank a lot last night. Thats a good thing,…my liver needs practice. Build up some stamina for the weekend.
I also went to bed pretty late, or early depending on which way you look at it. But I made it to the train.
I’m spent though. Thats why I can only write short sentences. Because my mind is drained and can only think basic thoughts right now.
Like: Need water. Need food. Wish I had some tacos with a side of Guac and a strawberry milkshake.
I just got to Cadiz. I need to recharge…is that the word? yeah…I need to recharge the battery on my cell and call the COUCH guy, so I found a place to eat and plug in my phone. Unfortunatly I have to sit in front of a mirror and look at my miserable self. My face needs help and I could use a shower.
I think I’m going to like Cadiz, I get that impression so far. The air smells like the sea. Thats not why I think I’ll like it,…just saying.
Ok. Ok. I’m going, battery is good now and I got things to do. Time to start the party.
It also happens to be February 14th, but that’s a minor detail.
Do you know what the best part about February 14th is?
That’s when stores start to discount all their fancy chocolates they weren’t able to sell the day before. Unfortunately for me this year in Spain there will be no places to run to for stocking up.
Oh I’m not bitter or anything,…I don’t have any bad memories, or buried sadness, or wishful thoughts. I’m rather thankful to be alone, it frees me from certain obligations of dressing up and going out, or dressing up to stay home and bother with cooking something I desperately hope would be special. Every year I always seem to luck out that way. Maybe once it would be nice to do, but not this year.
I would have almost had a Valentine this year. He actually leaves Europe today. I met him in a Spanish tapa bar in Lisbon 2 days before Christmas. It was a cool and starry night when I met him. I dressed in all black with a knee-length skirt and a lace top, my hair was down and messy from walking all day, my lips were painted a few shades lighter than the wine that met them as I sipped from my glass. I was sitting at the bar unaccompanied and eating the only thing I could afford, a tomato salad, and I pretended like I didn’t want anything but that to eat.
He was from Quebec and spoke an English heavy with a French accent. Supposedly he claims he saw me from the street as he walked past and thought about coming in, but didn’t, at least not until he walked past again and I was still there, and then he knew it was some sort of sign and went for it, although I have no proof beyond his word that that’s how it happened to be, but I like the way it sounds.
I liked him sitting there next to me, filling up another empty chair that lined the bar. Its been too long I don’t remember who started taking or what was exchanged, but we got to talking either way, and he turned out to be rather nice conversation. He had left Montreal to come to Lisbon to write a film script for his movie, in essence his purpose in Portugal was to read, gather ideas, feel inspired, write, live, enjoy, and be. He had been in Lisbon for a few weeks already and knew some hot spots, and I was convinced and deemed the situation safe, to leave and go see a few places around the area with him.
That night was full of sipping sweet mojitos, hanging out in smoke-filled bars packed with Portuguese, and some getting lost in and exploring the narrow cobble-stone streets of Lisbon. In keeping to the fashion of a true gentleman, at the end of the night he made sure I found a taxi to take me back to my hostel.
I never told him my name. He never told me his age. That was our agreement.
The story stops and continues and has a few things in between, but nothing truly romantic in the broad sense developed or occurred between us. He really was a gentleman and I did enjoy his company very much so. He was very generous and kind with me, and before I left Lisbon he told me I was invited back to stay with him, before he would leave,…today, February 14th. I actually considered it for a bit, and decided not to. Everything was wonderful the way it had been and I didn’t want to risk changing that.
Thats just one of the many stories I have to tell from Portugal, which I haven’t spoken much about. I don’t feel the need to share everything that happens. If you want all the details you’ll have to invite me out sometime and we can chat over drinks, that way I’m free to make it a real story with embellishments and exciting falsifications.
However I will say that in Portugal one of my most rewarding experiences was having the opportunity to see a traveling exhibit of personal photographs taken by and of Frida Kahlo. You can’t imagine how excited I was to find out about the exhibit!! The museum gallery hosted a collection of around 100 photographs ranging from old family portraits, to her more famous portraits that others had taken of her, as well as the photos she had taken of people such as Diego (that cow) or her other lovers/friends, and also the photos that demonstrate her love of Mexico and its people, history and culture.
It was such a pleasure to go alone, it made the time spent sort of intimate.
The gallery was carefully planned, and included a short and well made factual film about her life, as well as an elaborate Dia de los Muertos alter dedicated to her, and of course the photos. The experience was close up and personal, and before me was the woman who I admire so much, and the images of those she admired. Her photographs invoked such a range of emotions from painful sadness of seeing her broken fragile body after the accident and consequently her interpretations and dealings with it, to feeling a sweet nostalgia of Mexico.
She made me want to cry, to escape, to dream, to see, to love, to live, to fight. To laugh. I turned the corner once and I saw a picture of her that instantly put a smile on my face. Here a now blown up life-size Frida Kahlo sits in front of me, her hair is wild, her face scrunched up from the bright Mexico sun that shines down upon it. She doesn’t have flowers in her hair, or fancy jewelry, or the beautiful clothes that have become associated with her. She’s lounging around in a plain baggy suit thing, smoking a cigarette. I Absolutely love it, and laughed out loud. That would be the Frida Kahlo I would like to get to meet, to share some tequilas with her and just be real.
There was another photo I really liked that she had taken of her friend, and like other photos she had hand written on this one. It’s a picture of her female friend, in a chair with her legs spread apart, a seemingly unladylike position. Frida writes, “My normal position in life.”
Right next to that picture was another she had taken, of Diego. Frida had pressed her painted lips against the photo leaving 2 kisses to remain on the paper. I think she must have had beautiful kisses and for certain nice lips.
Love is a tricky thing, If it wasn’t we wouldn’t have so many books, songs, poems, movies, theories, and ideas dedicated to it, so I’m not even going to try to say that I know all about it.
But I do know Valentines day is often a time ridden with various shades of pink. And bouquets. And cards. And chocolates. And motions. And words.
I hope that this Valentines day you are able to do something that you truly love in the purest sense, whether or not that includes another person or not, not because Halmark says that’s how it should be, but because everyday we should seek out those things big or small that bring us and others true joy and happiness.
Happy Tuesday, February 14th everyone.
It doesn’t feel like a Sunday night tonight and I wish it was a Thursday. That would mean I wouldn’t have to wake up early tomorrow and I could relive the weekend all over again. It’s probably my own fault I feel this way. Ever since I was sick that one weekend I messed up my sleep schedule and I both go to bed an wake up way too late. Like last night I was sleepy but just didn’t feel like going to bed.
So I didn’t, because I’ve gotten into the spoiled habit of doing whatever I want here in Torrox. Thats what a 12 hour work week will do to you.
I didn’t until 5:30am I should say. So in fact I did sleep,..until 1pm.
I really didnt do much of anything this weekend. I was bummed out on Thursday. I showed up to school, and was informed that my bike- which I left locked up outside of school over night due to unfavorable weather- had the front tire stole from it. I wasn’t even angry. I was just really sad and disappointed. Who does that kind of stuff? Seriously. It was a cheap crummy bike outside of an elementary school and had a Mickey Mouse sticker on it.
Last year in the states I was riding my bike from work, and I had to pass all the bars downtown to get home. I rarely stopped for a drink, but on one occasion I did. I locked my bike up to a tree outside on the sidewalk and proceeded to have myself a nice evening with friends. I come out from the bar to find that some punk ass had smashed the little bell I had on my bike.
Come on, really? I think theres a special hell for people that do things like that. I’d like to imagine those same people in shrunk and itchy cowl neck wool sweaters on, forced to ride the bikes they vandalized. Up a mountain with a terrible incline, on uncomfortable and really small seats, in the midst of horrible weather. I’ve had to ride my bike in the snow/rain before and its made me cry from self-pity,…so I guess in those conditions. Also they would be forced to listen to disco music or the reject songs of the 90s one of the two.
Well I certainly entertained and elaborated the thought of all of this,…because I had to walk home that day.
I had been planning on riding over to Nerja but instead today I took a nice long walk. I walked for a good 3.5 hours I did a big circle of Torrox and the area between the town and the coast which is its own separate area. That area is known as Torrox Park. Its habitants mainly consist of English and Germans. Everything about the Park is different from the Pueblo and Costa. The architecture is the most obvious, its all new and modern. Its sort of how housing in Florida is like…all small, but rich and fancy, everything looks the same. There are lots of blonde haired people on the streets with shorts and sunglasses walking around with their pet dogs. 80s music blares from the windows of the bars and homes you pass. Its not to bad, it made for a good walk.
I eventually came to a wooden sign advertising a bar with an arrow that pointed down a shabby and untamed gravel road. Nothing about the road looked like it would lead anywhere special. Trash like empty juice boxes and toilet seats were sprawled around in the overgrown grass that was beginning to overtake the road. I didn’t make any quick decisions.I just kind of stood there looking at the road, and not seeing anything that it could lead to. I figured what the heck,..I’ll go look for this hidden bar, just to see what kind of establishment it could possibly be, and if it was worth anyone going down this lost road.
As a walked a bit further I would have thought it was a trick, or that the bar had moved and no one bothered to take down the sign but I started to hear faint music. As I kept walking the music turned from undistinguishable melodies to Madonna’s “Like a Virgin”. Yet, I kept going.
You walk down this seemingly useless road and suddenly this your blinded by this surprisingly huge and bright- lemon yellow colored building, a former barn that now blinds your eyes as the late afternoon sun shines down upon it. I approached the bar, and I saw an older woman outside soaking in the rays drinking a bubbly draft beer and I thought that looked good. So I got myself one and asked to join her.
She was English and soon a group her friends, all English as well showed up and sat down. They let me still sit with them. They were nice I suppose, in the sense that they weren’t mean or rude. They all had pasty skin and bad teeth. The woman wearing the fake leopard fur coat had a mustache the same color as her coat.
I didn’t stay long, I didn’t really feel like I fit in, nor did I feel like trying. So I continued on with my walk, down to the coast where I sat on the beach a bit and listened to the waves crashing and played with some dogs that had run away from their owner, then headed back up the mountain home.
Writing all this makes me tired. It wasn’t a particularly interesting day, but I enjoyed it. The fresh air was good. I think I’ll sleep good, and soon tonight.
My body is free from the bed which held it captive over the duration of last weekend.
A former seemingly empty and growling pit of a stomach was finally pleased and fed.
The chill of the wind outside that crept its way into me and settled in my toes left today.
Sky that had been bleak dazzled with sunshine.
Warm and delightful summer breezes in February entered the open windows of my home.
Dexter had just bought a new Cannon DSLR and he knows what aperture means.
His wife has a beautiful name, almost as beautiful as her complexion and stunning clear eyes. Her name is feminine and strong like her personality which shines from inside her petite little body. However its so beautiful that I can’t remember what it is, only its beauty.
Despite living only streets away from each other in a small community our paths crossed for the first time tonight near my house.
He more than liked my camera. I let him hold it. He looked through the lens and admired the potential picture it could take, but would’t press down to capture it even when I insisted.
He knows about photography but he said it’s been awhile. Then the subject changed. I should meet his wife. At one time she taught English and Spanish.
Dexter is English.
She is Spanish.
I’ve never been invited to an English tea-time but it was a pleasant experience. The English tea sweetened with milk and sugar was accompanied with buttery biscuits. We drank from very large mugs, much too large to free a pinky finger and lift it in the air as you sip. We sat outside for the weather was still warm, and the clouds were starting to turn shades of pink, which contrasted with the intense blues of the objects around us and of the subtle blue hue that was swallowing the white washed buildings of the village. The moon was starting to peek out. Dexter noticed it first because he is taller than both his wife and I.
“Come follow me”, his wife told me. I followed her past the green front door of the home of the couple I had met only a matter of minutes ago. I scrambled to not fall behind as we hurried up the steps she had darted towards, the space was dark and narrow. I didn’t even have time to look around at the room it lead to because she immediately opened another door revealing another set of stairs that continued upwards, but outside leading to a terrace.
Once free from the walls of the house we stood on the terrace and I couldn’t believe what I saw! The view blew me away completely,…the splash of colors and textures made my mind explode a little. And the moon that I could barely see from below slowly became this giant taking its place in the heavens.
She had the Cannon. I Had the Nikon. We both took pictures in silence. I didn’t even notice she was done, I was so into what I was seeing. She told me to come down when I was ready and left me alone on the terrace. I didn’t stay up there long, that would have been rude,..but if left to me I would have found a space right there on the floor and have laid there watching night come and have drifted to sleep counting stars.
Following the path I had taken, I returned back to them, both bustling around till we all sat down for tea. We sat in the chairs they just bought. The were student desks, and oddly the chair part was just as blue as the false window behind us, and they had a little flip out part like a desk for writing,…or for setting down tea mugs. I can’t remember what they said but they made some sort of comment to try to explain why we were sitting in children’s desks,…but I said I liked it and I felt smarter by the minute sitting in them.
We didn’t actually talk that long. Dexter quickly finished his tea and smoked a bit of a cigarette then explained he had to run off to watch a futbol game. It was quite the predicament because two games are playing tonight both Malaga and Liverpool. A true case of torn loyalty which is something taken very seriously in Spain and in England I’d assume, as well as any other futbol crazed country.
We said our pleased to meet you’s and our goodbye’s.
I then walked to a store and bought Chedder cheese because I have to eat gross limp asparagus for dinner, and then a box of Danish cookies as a reward for eating gross limp asparagus.
And that is what I did this evening.
I’m very sick and haven’t left my bed today.
It could very easily have been a miserable day, but at least its Saturday and I had no real plans. I was going to meet the girls in Malaga for brunch at the beach, but its so cold out. Anyways, I haven’t been able to eat, so I feel tired. It been an alternating cycle of sleeping for a few minutes, to wake up and read, sleep for a few hours, wake up and listen to music and surf the web. Came across this poem/song that I liked. It made me think of when I was leaving Malaga yesterday. I was sitting on a bench waiting for the bus to come. Had the ‘phones in and was listening to some music and watching people.
Suddenly, Walking on A Dream, by Empire of the Sun starts to play. That song gives me good memories of working at Nak’s taking breaks from serving a-holes and just coming back to the kitchen to fetch soup or rice. I cherished the few minutes of peace and pleasure to bust out dance moves or sing along to songs like this playing. Plus, I’d say this song is pretty much impossible to listen to and stay still. My shoulders are always the first to move…and then the rest of my body follows.
One of my friends and I were talking one day. I forgot how he worded it, but to the effect that sometimes he will be in public and completely forget that other people are around and can see him, and he’ll be thinking of something funny, or confusing and just make weird faces thinking about these things, till he realizes that he’s making weird faces because other people start looking at him and make weird faces like what’s wrong with you back to him?
Thats HILARIOUS because that happens to me all the time. Also, its not uncommon for me to just be walking all fast paced and serious, then something triggers a thought and just I’ll laugh out loud suddenly and then be silent again like some kind of crazy person.
I know we aren’t the only ones, I’ve seen people around clearly in their own little world, walking down the street or on the same public bus as me, just a jammin away spittin out lyrics and going crazy. Before it used to kinda bother me, like ‘ok we get it, its a great song your listening too, but why don’t you chill out a bit’….but now I don’t mind as long as its not too outrageous. Its nice to see people who move to music. Besides I can’t really mind when I do things like that too I guess.
So back to the bench. There I sat, and I started to just bob around listening to this catchy tune then I caught someone looking me. I think to myself, ok fair enough, I guess I am kinda just busting out in public, and these people can’t hear the music I’m listening to so it might look strange.
Then it gave me an idea because I was wearing my big bug eye sunglasses and could see the reflections of people in them from the screen of my MAC…I wanted to take pictures of people watching me do socially unacceptable behavior (like dance at the bus stop) and see how they reacted. The bus came so I didn’t really get a chance to test it out.
It also made me think of a short video I saw in a Lisbon Art Museum a man made a glass briefcase and walked around with it, and you can only really see the reflections from the briefcase, but the people and places this guy went and saw are from this unique perspective. It was pretty cool, and would indeed catch a lot of looks, as it did.
I want to do something like that in public. But it would be more fun with Tina or somebody else too.
Heres the poem/song that made me tangent all that:
¿Qué diría la gente, recortada y vacía,
si un día fortuito, por ultra fantasía,
me tiñera el cabello de plateado y violeta,
usara pelo griego, cambiara la peineta
por cintillo de flores: miosotis o jazmines,
cantara por las calles al compás de violines,
o dijera mi verso recorriendo las plazas
libertado mi gusto de mortales mordazas?
¿Irían a mirarme temblando en las aceras?
¿Me quemarían como quemaron hechiceras?
¿Rogarían en coro, escuchando la misa?
En verdad que pensarlo me da un poco de risa.
What Would They Say?
What would the people say, reduced and empty,
If one fortuitous day, by some extreme fantasy,
I were to dye my hair silvery and violet, were to wear an old greek gown, exchanging the comb
for a circlet of flowers: forget-me-nots or jasmines,
were to sing through the streets to the rhythm of the violins,
or were to read my verses aloud, traveling the plazas
my gusto freed of common gags?
Would they go to watch me, covering the sidewalks?
Would they burn me like they burned enchantresses?
Would they ring the bells, calling to mass?
In truth, when I think of it, I laugh a little.