Thoughts from the Plane: Sentimental / Going Mental

September 29, 2011 § 12 Comments

MCO -> MAD / Sunday September 25 -> Monday September 26

Here I am, filled with excitement, ready to see the Spaniard, ready to get this show in the road.

I sit on the plane and can’t help but reflect on the amazing trip I have had at home. I can’t help but think of the coming months and the exciting things that are right around the corner.

But my oh so happy thoughts of sunshine and roses are interrupted. “Good evening ladies and gentlemen, welcome to your 8 hour flight.”

I have never been one to hate flying – I am forever grateful for the life it affords me. Turbulence never bothers me. What can I say, I guess I don’t think my plane will ever crash. But with the rate that I board planes, sometimes it’s the little things that nearly push you over the edge.

My mind flees back and forth between sweet sentimental thoughts and absolute ‘I’m going to go mental’ annoyances.

Sentimental: I can’t wait to hug the Spaniard.

Going Mental: Why do people try to walk up the aisle while others are still boarding. Everyone is walking the other way Sir!

Sentimental: I can’t imagine a more supportive or wonderful family. How did I get so lucky?

Going Mental: The doors aren’t even closed. We haven’t taken off. This is my view for the next 8 + hours.

Sentimental: Aww… The couple in front of me are going to Europe for the first time. The man beside them is giving them tips and recommendations. I love human kindness.

Going Mental: “I’m sorry ma’am but the fasten seat belt sign is still on. You can not use the restroom while we are still ascending.”

Sentimental: Remembering this guy and his new fat cheeks. How do babies grow so fast?

Going Mental: Okay. We are an hour into the flight and the fasten seat belt sign is still on. Turbulence has nothing on my bladder. I will risk getting yelled at as I make a break for the bathroom too. The alternate of wetting myself seems worse.

Sentimental: The next few months are going to whiz by! (whiz – good thing I made it to the bathroom) I will be back on this plane, heading the other direction (in the day time) in no time. One day I will miss all of this back and forth. I will miss Madrid.

Going Mental: Trying to sleep on an overnight flight. Adjust – adjust – ahh comfort – chair bumped – light on – wake up – adjust -adjust…

And of course it’s all worth it. I land and arrive home. Hugs will arrive after the workday. When I am in a clinically mental state from making myself stay up all day.

8 hour flight. 4 hours of sleep. Madrid is 6 hours ahead. Staying awake is the only way to get a jump on jet lag.


What makes you mental while traveling?

What are you sentimental about these days?


European Me – Closer than ever, when so far away

September 23, 2011 § 36 Comments

It dawned on me yesterday that I am closer than ever to becoming European!

Beret, Pellegrino and all!

This U.S. trip was longer than expected for a multitude of reasons. And this means one thing. I have been staying with my parents for far longer than any of us expected.

Thanks guys!

All in all it has been wonderful. I have tried to do my part. Clean the kitchen, fold laundry, say thank you (a million times!) for letting me use their cars.

This very one. Sans festive magnet.

And then I realized. I am almost 30 years old and (for the sake if this post) living with my parents.

This has European written all over it!

It is not uncommon for children in Spain to live with their parents into their 30’s. Many don’t move out until they get married.

Italy has the highest percentage of intergenerational cohabitation in Europe. A study from 2007 shows that 82% of men aged between 18 and 30 still live with their parents. 82%!!

Not that I would ever hold this against Italy!

I heart Rome.

Economic conditions considered I know these statistics have gotten worse. In the United States as well.

So there you go, even when I am far away, I am closer than ever to becoming a European. Hip Hop Hooray!


I told the Spaniard when I met him, “It’s a good thing you don’t live with your mom. I am not sure we’d be together.”

“It’s the culture,” was his defense, as he was imagining a life without me.

True. All true. I just imagine it would be very hard to relate to someone who has never lived on their own. I moved out of my parent’s house at 18. It’s a good thing the Spaniard went away to college just like his new American counterpart.

Rome hearts us!


What age did you move away from home?

What age is acceptable to still live with your parents?

p.s. In Australia and the UK, they are called children that live at home into adulthood “kippers” – kids in parents’ pockets eroding retirement savings. Love it!

An American Saturday in September

September 20, 2011 § 18 Comments

Most of my posts display the European side of my cross continental life. But what about the American side?

I am sure my lovely Spanish ladies want to see something American. [You don’t need me telling you what to see in Barcelona.]

On this U.S. tour a small window of opportunity opened an American classic.

You don’t get more American than this:

FOOTBALL! [our version]

Here’s your crash course in College Football in America. A slight overview. Just the basics. Because it’s all I know.

How To: College Football in America

In preparation you will need:

Festive Car Magnets

Tailgating Supplies

Tailgating Tents

Tailgating cocktails do not make you sun-ray resistant. Once upon a college-time I learned this the hard way.

You will definitely see:

School spirit! In all of it’s glittery glory.

Don’t be surprised if you see:

Contests! Of the food and drink variety. Above pictured: hot dogs

or even a proposal! She said yes.

Nothing should surprise you at a college football tailgate. There is eating, drinking and game day smack talking.

Father / Daughter Alumni

College football fans are loyal. Extremely loyal.

You will feel the energy of:

The crowds

The swarms of important people

The Media

The Band

and oh yeah… the game.

There is nothing like the thrill of a college football game. You can’t help but get carried away in the excitement and passion.

Nothing beats family love at the family school.

Dare I say you haven’t felt America if you haven’t felt passion and unification that sports always bring.

Just an American Saturday in September.

  • Are there sports fanatics out there?
  • Would you rather watch the game live or on tv?
  • What is your favorite part of the sports experience?

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