Conversation class was cancelled today and so that means I got at least one and a half extra hours, maybe two. This gives me an opportunity to talk all about Aladdin Pants. Apparently, these are only pants that you can buy on the street or from people who open up their trenches and go, “you like?” Okay, I’m making that last bit up, but all I’m saying is that I’ve never seen them in stores. And women wear them here, these flowy loose pants with vibrant patterns and elastic at the ankles. I can’t quite make sense of them – are they incredibly stylish or the markers of Spain’s granola people? So does that mean that hippies here are addicted to Aladdin? I’m not sure if it’s polite to ask.
Oh – fair warning – I haven’t been taking many pictures lately, so I’m just going to use old ones you haven’t seen yet – as I find that a blog without pictures is not very interesting. I am not going to provide any explanation. Or guarantee the quality of the photos themselves. Don’t say you weren’t warned and
definitley don’t get too excited. (He isn’t.)
And speaking about not getting too excited: let me introduce you to the single worst word in the Spanish language: tranquila (tran-quil-a). It’s not a swear, a cuss, or something that men say to you on the street. It means calm down, cool down, cool your jets, don’t get fluffed up, be tranquil. And it is the one word of the Spanish language that makes me want to get out a machine gun and become a horrible serial killer and break every plate in the house. Which is good, as people usually sick this on me when I’m at school. There’s not much to break there except for the desks and I’m not confident in my abilities to
actually do some serious damage. They are really sturdy. But anyway, this is one of those iconic words in the Spanish language, a bit like ‘like.’ Who has not wanted to scream when someone who couldn’t just stop saying ‘like?’ Well, add some patronization and you’ve got tranquila. I’ll be remembered at the study abroad office as ‘the one that snapped.’
I have discovered that I love soccer – as I’ve written about earlier – but I’ve put my finger on two things that make me wonder about it.
1. There’s a time in the game when players of both sides line up between the goal and a guy that tries to kick the ball in the goal. As the guy kicks the ball, everybody jumps, trying to hit the ball with their heads. The ball never even comes close to their heads and they look like complete idiots. Why? I have no idea. But I get this image in my head of little baby birds flapping their tiny wings and trying to fly, trying desperately to lift off the ground, unsuccessfully.
2. Men are silly (#1), and men are also hopeless whinies (sometimes). Exhibit A is that time when a player gets nocked to the ground and starts
rolling around, in ‘pain,’ always clutching the same part of his leg. This is a ploy to get some more time resting on the ground while potentially earning the other guy a yellow card, which the refs actually fall for sometimes. But why? It’s just bad sportsmanship and makes the guys look bad. I’ve decided that if a soccer player falls hopelessly in love with me, I won’t date him unless he quits getting grass stains on his nice uniform for no reason.
What I do like about futbol is that my Spanish father likes to cuss at the players that disappoint him. Maria will gasp a bit and say, “Jose!,” and grin a bit because I think when I’m not there, she lets him get away with some comments that wouldn’t otherwise fly. Also, did you know that slurs are known as ‘tacos’ in Spanish?
Today I’m going to a pool on top of a library in Bilbao. Confused? I was…especially when they tried to explain it in Spanish. So:
This is the ground floor: there are about 50 columns that all look different – I like the Chinese-inspired on in the foreground the best, though there are so many others that are fantastic, too. That brick part up top was a wine distillery or storage facility or something, but was shelled by the larger building. You can see the corner of the old building, and around that corner there’s a corridor and if you look up:
Yeah. You can see people swimming up there (please, please, no speedos!), but I think that swimming up high will be cool, especially since I think it’s open to the air. So that’s where I’m going this afternoon.
And tomorrow at precisely 8:40 in the morning, I am getting on a bus to go to San Sebastian, staying for the day, staying the night, and then going to France the next day. There will be photos involved, though I will have to fill up the cracks of this fabulous period of time with homework. Siiiiigh. But there is always procrastination!