I don't know where I'm headed with this blog entry. Maybe delightfully nowhere in particular. Just once this week, I'd like to write something that doesn't answer the prompt, doesn't transition smoothly, is insensibly devoid of sense, and most of all, independent of a menacing grade...All the people who told us studying abroad was academically easy and usually meant a boost to the GPA should be tarred-and-feathered for being downright misleading. Talk about spurring unrealistic expectations.
People in La Jolla start riots when finals creep near 35%. On Tuesday, I took a final with four questions, each one worth about 20% of my final class grade. Three hours, eight pages of writing, information that was mostly over my head...mm, that hurt a little. Yesterday, I slogged through another written exam worth a "mere" 50%, and next Friday, I'm slated to take one that counts for a whopping 100%. Good thing this one is for a class I have literally a 1% chance of passing. Congratulations, Spain, I'm going to fail my first class ever in YOUR country! Monumental, I know, but try not to let it get to your head-I really can't afford any more F's.
After an academically intense week, I thought I'd take a day-long sabbatical before diving back into studying and wondering how I'm going to write a 15-page paper describing what I do at UNICEF (I am an intern = I do nothing). Together with my new Eduardo Galeano book, a freshly charged iPod, and some chocolate hazelnut gelato, I ventured to a crumbling cement jetty overlooking the Mediterranean down by Barceloneta. I sat and stared and read and (no word that rhymes with "stared" and contextually fits has come to me yet) for the duration of the afternoon. It was freezing but glorious.
Once all these beastly finals and papers are done with, I want to get back into concentrated leisure reading. (I welcome all recommendations of noteworthy gems.) It's been almost six months and I am still nowhere near finishing El Amor En Los Tiempos de Colera. The Spanish is killing me. Someday when I'm old and retired, I hope to recreate my childhood; live in the library and spend all my time voraciously devouring books.
Our flatmates have all moved out and returned home with the ending of the semester. Si and I are a little sad about it; Inyaki, Andres, Frank, and Pete were all good fellows and they will be missed. In their stead have followed: Yorith (I actually have no idea how his name is really spelled), Nico, and Jean. So much for the girls we were hoping for. Nico and Jean speak French and Basque, and one speaks a little English and no Spanish, and the other speaks a little Spanish and no English. Needless to say, communicating has been slightly confusing. But they bought a brand-new frying pan so they win 2387908347 points for that. I'm pretty sure I've never seen something so beautiful. I cooked with it and NOTHING stuck, not one single crumb. Amazing.
I did a load of white laundry earlier this week. My clothes came out BRIGHT PINK. There was nothing even remotely colored mingling with them in the washer. I washed them again with bleach and they came out...grey pink. I now have four shirts and countless pairs of calzones all colored the same shade of dusty rose. Oh, diversity. And honestly, of all colors, PINK?!?!
Jelly Belly's are a challenge. Mixed in with the few tasty flavors are many lurking beans of death. Sometimes the colors are too similar and I unwittingly chomp down on cantaloupe instead of tangerine, or cinnamon instead of cherry, or puke instead of lime. Rats. I think I just ate a San Diego jelly. Not that it looks at all like a Barçe bean...
Who knew a year would be so long?
I miss home.