18 Jul 2010

Missing again?

You might have noticed it's been a bit quiet around here again lately... and that I haven't been visiting my favourite bloggers... haven't flown off to the moon or anything, just had my life invaded by cousins! My cousin from Mallorca has been visiting this past week with her 11 month old baby and her younger brother and sister (8 year-old twins)... I've been teaching the twins how to snorkel (they go crazy with the slightest little fishy... in a safe calm spot I take them that really isn't a big deal underwater!), and they still insist on using me as a jungle gym in the water... fortunately they saw me with crutches at their first communion last April so I just tell them I have to be careful if I don't want to re-injure myself and they calm down. :o)

my aquababy niece with her mommy (my cuz)

my snorkelling-crazy cousins!

And although wonderful and fun... it's EXHAUSTING!!!

Not to mention reddening... why do kids always want to go down to the pool/beach during the peak hours? They've got lovely Mediterranean skin and don't realise their redheaded cousin is turning into a lobster!!! So much for sunscreen... I had it right all these years by avoiding the 12pm-5pm time frame... and worse... I'm getting a thick white stripe up to my neck from my bikini and it's going to look aweful when I'm all dressed up for one of my best friends' wedding in 2 weeks! :p

Mix that in with a heavy dose of classes I have to prepare and run around to get to on time (always more work in summer when students are out of school)... and the result is "internet? what's that?" I have so much to write about too! The madness that is winning a World Cup, a unique procession and dancing in the town just up the coast, haven't written about books or movies in months! And I've still got Hogueras tales to share! Fun video segments from these various events to weave together... where do I sign up for 48h days?

Cousins leave tomorrow, but my sis is here from London and I have to catch up on class prep work (plus have 3 new students) so I might still be silent for a while longer... and will start writing before I catch up on reading ('cause otherwise I'll never get anything written!). But to leave you with a foretaste... this is me right before setting out to watch Spain's historic (and highly stressful!) World Cup victory:


11 Jul 2010

World Cup Fever: TODOS CON LA ROJA!!!

Today's THE day! Today's the World Cup FINAL... and Spain's in it!!! :o) We made it!!!


Spain and I have gone completely football crazy!!! (that's soccer for you yanks! lol!) I wanted to share memories from these past several weeks of celebration and let some of you who've never seen World Cup Fever experience at least a little bit of it vicariously. ;o)

1st Round - Match 2: Spain vs Honduras 2:0

Saw it on a "giant" screen outdoors in a park in San Vicente (next town over), overflowing with very excited people, kiddies to oldies all praying for a decisive victory (since we had lost the first match against the Swiss)

Here's a taste:

1st Round - Match 3: Spain vs Chile 2:1

The decisive match! We needed to win to be first in our group and avoid playing Brazil in the next round!

Friends preparing the "ambiance" (there were three flags hanging on the walls, one of them mine!):

Everyone mostly ignoring the food and concentrating on the match:


Round of 16: Spain vs Portugal 1:0

At my place, with a bunch of local crazies and a couple imported from Belgium!



(that's what everyone's yelling this year as striker David Villa has scored 5 of Spain's 7 goals)



Quarter Finals: Spain vs Paraguay 1:0

Back at my place, fewer people but just as crazy! :p

A penalty shot leads to GOOOOL!!!


Damn!!! The referee cancelled the goal 'cause apparently some players moved to soon! Back to 0:0 and talk about feeling bummed out!

But wait!


GOOOOOOOL!!! Villa again!!!

Impatiently waiting for the referee to blow the whistle and end the match before the Paraguayans get a chance to score and get a tie:

V for VICTORY!!!

And finally, home from celebrating the Semi-Final against Germany. 1:0 for Spain!!!! YAY!!!!

And now I'm going to don my shirt, paint my face and head off to watch the historic final against Holland (neither country has ever won the World Cup) with my friends in a crowded bar in San Vicente. I fully hope to come home honking my horn like crazy and waving a lag out my window! Wether they win or lose.... as long as they play well! Being finalists would still be a big accomplishment... but I'm trusting Paul the Octopus who has granted Spain the VICTORY!!!

Ha! I got this in an e-mail forward yesterday, Spain's new flag:

So I'm fully counting on "La Roja" to bring this little gadget to its new home in Spain for the next four years:



8 Jul 2010




                        ESTA EN LA 



The country's going crrrrrrazy!!!!! I just spent 20' driving around town with a flag hanging out my window honking my horn at any passers-by in red jerseys or other cars with flags! Sports history in the making: SPAIN IS IN THE FINAL OF THE WORLD CUP!!!! Our best match of the tournament so far (there's a great description of it on the NYTimes World Cup blog).... so much for Germany having scored 4 goals in each of their 3 previous matches... we barely let them even try for a couple of shots which were beautifully saved by Casillas! And what an astonishing goal by defense Puyol!!!! And Sunday we plan to teach the Dutch the same lesson as the Germans!




3 Jul 2010

Missing: a crazy redheaded blogger!

So, as you probably noticed, it's been a bit quiet around here... I just had a fabulous week of real life getting in the way of blogging! 

No time to recuperate from Hogueras... last Saturday was an all day bachelor/bachelorette party for a couple of friends of mine. We greeted them in the morning with a mariachi band...


and then waltzed around town -San Vicente- until the church plaza and danced and sang and had a blast until we moved the fiesta elsewhere... until past 2 a.m.!

with the future bride, one of my best friends!

On Monday a couple of Belgian friends arrived for the week and I took them down to the beach for a night of fireworks from our summer competition.

It wasn't the best I've seen here (nor the best of the week), but it was still over 20' of impressive light and sound!!! :o)

I like having visitors, it gives me a chance to visit spots I haven't been to in a while. Like these (very cold!) river and waterfalls at a place called "Las Fuentes del Algar":

I haven't been there in 5 years, and with all the rain we had this spring the place is beautiful right now!

Another place I haven't been in a really long time is Tabarca, the island in the bay across from Alicante. 

Well, I haven't been ON it... I did go scuba diving last summer! ;o) This time we went snorkeling...

but before then ate waaay too much of the delicious local cuisine...

entrada: gambitas y pescaditos fritos

primer plato: caldero de gallina (a kind of rockfish)

segundo plato: arroz abanda (made with the broth from above fish)

Hopefully with all this time out in the sun (covered in sunscreen mind you!), I'll reduce a bit of this contrast:

but considering my natural colours... probably not! lol!

Vacation's over and I've got a massive amount of English classes starting up this week, so as soon as I've got those ready I'll get back to sharing images of the Hogueras with you! All this of course after I watch Spain keep winning its way towards the World Cup Championship (1/4F tonight against Paraguay!), and Nadal get his second Wimbledon trophy tomorrow! ;o)

ohé! ohé! ohé! ohéeeeee!!!!