Sunday, June 28, 2009

Oh, June, you wicked month. You're lucky we know how to have fun.

June, june, june june, june.

I tell ya, if there's one downside to living your life on the academic calendar, it's that June is a killer. If there were a second downside, it'd be that September is a rapist. (You know that's funny.)

Of course, June is only further complicated by the fact that we Ruiter Seeleys think we're entitled to travel the world in the summer, and therefore rent out our apartment, and make all sorts of crazy arrangements in order to have fun and make money at the same time.

So here's what we've been up to/will be getting up to:

- I've finished my Bàsic 1 Catalan class. I can now string together sentences and speak crazy common-man-Latin with Lily. I'm supposed to be doing a Bàsic 2 intensive in July, but I think I'm going to have to cancel because of other engagements.....(Read on). I wish I had learned Spanish how I am learning Catalan, speaking from day 1, focusing on talking and using everyday phrases rather than on conjugating verbs. I still translate Spanish from English in my head, but speaking Catalan stuff just seems to be popping out of my mouth and in retrospect I realize it comes out right 70% of the time. Sigh.

- We are not living in our home right now. Three ballerinas are there (2 girls and a boy) ho study at the California Institute for the Arts are taking a dance class at the center next to our building, we found each other online and they are there. They are all cool and we've actually been hanging out since they arrived.

- Oli, Lily and I are staying with my friend Rodolfo for a week until Lil and Oli fly away to England, and then pick up our VW (IT IS FIXED) and will make the maiden voyage (without me! SOooooo jealous!) to Prèfailles in France (Brittany) to spend a couple weeks with Oli's family there.

- I am staying in my friend Daz's apartment in July. He will not be there. He and everyone else from OH will be in A Coruña being teachers at English summer camp. His flatmate Cristina, from the Czech Republic is there. I will be continuing my role as Communications Coordinator at OH throughout July, doing search engine optimization on the website, putting together new promotions, redoing the homepage and web site stylesheets, refurbishing bulletin boards, and getting digital picture frames installed in the school, for publicity. I will also be teaching technology sessions to kids doing the OH summer course. It's like Little House on the Prairie up in there in that I will have 5 - 15 year olds in my sessions. Still don't know what that will be like, especially since Spanish kids suck. (You know I only half mean that.)

- Also will be working on a personal project in July, an idea for a web site I would like to build that will make us very rich and able to travel the world and see family at will (when Lily's not in school). Will be meeting with a woman in BCN who set up a similar site, with a different theme, a couple years ago that has been very successful. Watch out, Internet.

- In August I get vacation. I meet Oli and Lily in Slovakia, along with other British friends, on August 1st....right after the ballerinas move out of our house and I welcome in the middle-aged French couple who will be staying there in August, visiting their son who is doing an internship in BCN.

- After a week in Slovakia, back to UK. Hang out. Take VW to Wales. (Finally I get to use it!!!!!)

- Return to BCN 20-something of August, put house back together, welcome my parents who are visiting from the 27 Aug - 5 Sept. (Yeah!!!!)

- Commence with Lily's week-long summer camp, new school meetings (she starts at bigger kid school in Sept), and swim lessons.

Otherwise, we've spent the last few days at a "Welcome to new school in the fall" picnic, a "goodbye school" party, and a "goodbye for the summer, workmates" dinner.

Photos from Lily's school party:

We will miss her pretty school. Sigh.

People really get into the dancing at the school parties. It's cool. Here's Lily's second-favorite teacher, Mireia.

And there's Enriqueta. The love of Lily's life.

Joan, Joana and Ani.

Arlene, Gerard and Oscar.

After the party, there happened to be a painting workshop for kids at the center next to the school. It was organized by Hippies. They're good at this sort of thing. You can see a clear escalation in the painting frenzy and level of comfort with the paint as the photos progress. I got my legs and arms painted and then had to meet a French guy on the street later to pick up the deposit money for him to reserve our flat for August, while covered in red hand prints. I looked like a psycho. I bloody psycho. It was awesome watching the old people pretend not to stare. Take that, Catalans.

On Saturday we spent the day in a central park with Gerard, Oscar and Arlene. It was great to do very little except eat, drink coffee, lay in the grass and play ball. As usual, it all ended with naked children.

(Look! More Hippies in the background. They're everywhere.)