Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Nicole's last day :(

I'm just back from taking Nicole to the airport with Alex. Her flight is scheduled to leave in about an hour. It's already strange not having her here, since I got so used to hanging out with her all the time. It'll be a bit of an adjustment, but fortunately I'm all settled in now so hopefully it won't be too bad.

Last night we had a barbecue on our roof terrace in Nicole's honor. We were planning to keep it small... maybe 10-12 people. Next thing we new, we had more than 30! Marco spent a long time working the grill, cooking everything, and we all agreed that at our next barbecue (this Saturday) everyone will have to cook their own food so he doesn't have to do it all. Here's a photo of most of the group.

Here are some lovely pictures of Nicole and me:

Monday, August 29, 2005

A busy day

The Roommates!

After a late night of dancing yesterday, we all decided to get some work done today. Alex returned from his trip to Costa Brava with his girlfriend and started putting his room in order. George and Marco went to the gym and did some grocery shopping. Nicole and I opened my bank account (finally!), started my gym membership, and went to Ikea with George - because the bed didn't scare us enough - and bought my desk. Which we then had to assemble, of course. Then we all had a little house meeting to iron out such exciting things as how we will pay the rent and utilities. After enough seriousness, we had to take a group photo. Rarely does a whole hour go by in our apartment when a photo isn't taken.

Tomorrow is Nicole's last full day here, and I will be very bummed when she leaves. She has been so great about helping me get my room organized and all of life's necessities set up. So we are going to have a little barbecue on the roof tomorrow night in her honor. She and I are also planning to visit Tibidabo, the Park Guell, and do some shopping. It's a lot for one day, so I'm glad we got all the boring stuff out of the way today.

Finally, no post is complete without a funny picture of George. So, here it is for today.

More photos

Here are a few more pictures from the last few days.

This was taken just after the last runner in our group finished the race. Nicole, Felipe (from Brazil), me, Gustavo, (Brazil) George, Nortpool (Brazil), Wesley (Brazil), and Kyle (Canada).

Here we are at lunch yesterday.

Nicole and me working on the bed. I think Ikea directions are more confusing in Spain than in the US, even though they don't have actual words in either country.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Costa Brava race!

Today Nicole and I joined 14 others (11 IESE students, and 3 friends of students) for a 9km race in a small town in Costa Brava. One of the guys rented a van and drove to the town of Palafrugell, about an hour and a half from Barcelona. The course was beautiful, taking us on dirt paths through farms and countryside, and ended right on the main street near the beach. Nicole and I finished together and beat all the boys from our group. Everyone had their money on George... including me. We were pleased with our performance, particularly after sleeping only about 3 hours.

After the race, we changed into swimsuits and hit the beach for a couple of hours before having the best lunch ever (maybe just because we were so hungry from running and swimming - but it really was good.) We were so close to the French border that the menu was in English and French, rather than Castillian and Catalan.

After lunch we piled back into the van and we all slept all the way home. Tonight we are going out to celebrate the 29th birthday of Gustavo from Brazil. We are going to some karaoke place and then to a club... surely to be another late night.

My priorities are in order

Okay so I don't have a desk, or bookshelves, or proper sheets yet... but I do have my California flag in a place of importance!

George said he thought the flag was ugly, particularly the "beer," which he said looks like a child drew.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

A few photos

Marco irons and George cooks!

I took these photos tonight as Nicole and George were cooking dinner and Marco was preparing to go to Danzetoria.

Week One in Barcelona

Hi everyone. Welcome to my little blog. I thought this might be the best way for everyone to keep up with my whereabouts as I embark on my Spanish adventure. Ole!

So far, it has been a pretty amazing week. Many thanks to Nicole, my suitcase mule, for not only dragging extra luggage along for me, but for helping me set up my Ikea bed, my bank account (well, this is still in the works), etc... She's also going to show me how to weigh my fruit at the grocery store so I don't get yelled at by the checkout ladies.

My apartment is beautiful, and I've already posted photos of it here: - so check it out!

My roomates are Marco from Germany, George from Italy, and Alexander from Switzerland, whom I've only seen for about 10 minutes. His girlfriend lives here in Barcelona so we have a feeling we won't be seeing much of him.

Marco is a great partier and convinced Nicole and me to go to a disco called Danzetoria last night even though we were tired because he said, "Once you go inside Danzatoria, you will never want to leave." I told him maybe he could make some money on the side by renting out his room and living at Danzatoria!

George's mom was here when we arrived and stayed until Wednesday. He was sad when she left, mostly because he will now have to figure out how the "magic tunnel" that connects his dirty laundry basket to his wardrobe works. He would always bring his clothes to his parents' house on the weekends, so he never knew how the magic tunnel operated, just that one day he would have dirty clothes and the next, they were clean and in his closet! Yesterday was his first encounter with the washing machine and the dryer. He seems to have survived so far.

Tomorrow a big group of us is running in a 9K race somewhere outside of town. A few people have already done 2 of these races, and I think some people have decided just to cheer tomorrow rather than actually run. It'll be nice to see a town outside of Barcelona... I'm not sure how nice the actual running will be!