Friday, July 29, 2005


Barcelona = amazing!
My 3 days of travel were incredible. I don't have a great inclination to sit here and write all the amazing parts down at once; but, I see no better way to accomplish the task of relating such wonderful things. Perhaps a couple of short lists for each day will suffice for now.

• in the airplane I sat behind, across from and next to couples who all decided to be a little overly touchy and mushy in the duration of the flight.
• had lunch at Starbucks in Barcelona - lunch here means a bread-pastry thing with cheese and sauce with a caramel frappuccino… mmmm Starbucks goodness.
• wandered the main tourist walkway called Las Ramblas and saw things such as: (oh yes, I'm going to put a list inside a list)
> very creative street performers
> massive stock of little birds in cages chirping loudly
> tons of people
> the Columbus tower/statue with really cool lion statues at his feet
> the port
• found a fantastic store called Mango where I purchased a skirt, tank top, and lightweight/longsleeved shirt for very cheap prices
• got lost when trying to get to the train station
• sat next to 2 Canadians on the 2 hour train ride and played the country game and the movie game. (is there a country that starts with O?)
• got off at the correct stop, found my hosts, ate Spanish tortilla and sat on their terrace which leans over the beach.

ok, that's all for now. this is too long, I need to work and I don't feel like writing more now, so if you are reading this, anticipate much more exciting stories from my adventure coming soon…

Sunday, July 24, 2005

a very uninteresting post I'm afraid

Tomorrow morning, I leave for Barcelona. This thought alone should have made me very excited but for some reason, I'm quite apathetic about everything today. I started throwing some things into my backpack for the trip and then remembered some things I needed from my office, so here I am, checking people's blogs, updating my own and wondering about the next 10 days. That's right, 10 days left in Spain. It is amazing how 63 days sounded so long when I got here and now I'm looking back and wondering where they all went.

The last couple days have been decent. Had a lot of difficulties at work and became quite overwhelmed and frustrated. Things have smoothed over and I'm to the point now, where I cannot do much about any of it anyway. Friday I received a marvelous package full of new music to entertain myself with, a dvd I'm looking forward to chilling to, a ton of Welch's fruit snacks, and some mini Sharpies. It was a glorious day and I smiled a lot. It feels good to get something in the mail, especially when you are so far away from what you think of normal life.

Saturday, I spent the whole day at the beach. My neighbor took Natalie, me and Kristin to a nice beach and we all soaked in the sun and felt the gloriousness of the cool Mediterranean. I was very leary of the water since I have never had a good experience in ocean-like places, but it was quite fun and I relaxed. Hooray! finally a good experience to put into memory. Today, I'm suffering a bit. I discovered soon after leaving the beach that not only did I not put on enough sunscreen, but I also did a bad job of where I put it. I'm not in the lobster category, but there are several parts of me that are hurting. Cold showers are a blessing and Kristin's lovely idea about keeping lotion in the fridge was heavenly this morning.

So now, I sit and ponder what to take with me to Barcelona and am slowly feeling the excitement mixed with nervousness come in. Yes, it will be fun, and an adventure I look forward to being able to look back on. And crazy to think, but I'll have 6 days left when I get back to Malaga…

Off to Barcelona I go.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

a list because I have a headache

significant happenings or thoughts to post about:
• brochure is moving along quickly
• watched "Lagaan" movie with neighbors - musical about India, a cricket game and sappy romance. quite good actually
• cool breeze and loss of sarcastic tone
• working late
• Mountain Dew
• watching "The Trail of the Pink Panther" and thinking it was rather dumb
• collaging with little Natalie
• an Orbit advertisement which made me laugh
• groceries to fill my fridge
• successful market trip - purchases of fruit, skirt, earrings, and bag for Barcelona adventure
• 4 days til Barcelona trip
• prospect of a hike
• e-mails
• tragic bunny story from Erin
• 20 minute nap
• reviving of friendship with highschool friend
• upcoming girl's night at Bethany's
• this day is almost over

Monday, July 18, 2005

another Monday

I'm wearing my hair in pigtails today and it makes me feel cute. I don't know if I like feeling cute, but I guess it is better than feeling grungy or so-so. It certainly keeps me cooler. My day hasn't been half bad despite its horrid start - horrid simply because it is Monday - and the heat is a little discouraging. It has succeeded in reaching almost 110 degrees for 3 days in a row. There is a breeze, a sticky hot breeze that makes one very sarcastic and say such things as, "oh, what a lovely breeze!" My arms are sticking to the edge of the desk as I type. Such an odd feeling!

Last night, I made eggs in toast and watched 2 Veggie Tale movies with Natalie. We discovered a little lizard crawling along my wall and I dubbed him Nelson. I'm very fond of him already and was disappointed this morning when I searched for him to no avail. He is my hero as his appetite is drawn to spiders and mosquitoes, 2 things that are rampant at my casita.

My thoughts keep wandering today to things such as counting days, reminiscing of air conditioned bedrooms and McDonald's vanilla milkshakes, planning the many ways I'm going to hug all the people I am missing terribly, which songs I want to dance to with Amy, and the kinds of things I want to stay up for hours discussing with Dani. I opened my bottom dresser drawer last night and spotted a long lost friend, my cell phone. I had been growing tired of being attached to it, but now, I miss the idea of it actually ringing and familiar voices being on the other end. In one week, I will be in Barcelona. In 2 weeks, I will be packing and beginning goodbyes to my coworkers. Time flies and at this point I can't decide if I want to blow at it and make it go faster or just relax in its wake. I just used two very strange descriptions that somewhat clash together. Perhaps that is a sign to get back to work.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Hello, my name is Caryn and I'm a caffeine addict.

I've taken to drinking caffeine again. I have a good start of excuses: I've been keeping such odd hours here and almost everyone at MMC drinks a mug of coffee for prayer time. Of course, I could pour a cup of decaf if I thought about it. Also, I don't have to drink the cans of Mountain Dew that a lovely friend here found for me at a store. I really don't have to drink so much iced coffee with my neighbors either. I'm weak. I admit it. I knew it was a fact this morning when I woke up an hour later than normal and felt like my head was going to explode because my normal cup of coffee wasn't already down my throat. I resisted this morning, but broke quickly after church and had a huge glass of iced coffee. My head is still throbbing, many hours later and I keep thinking about the relief it would be to open my fridge and tap into a cold can of MD that is waiting for me. Here we go again…

Friday, July 15, 2005


My head was very full of thoughts and this kept me awake. I sat up late, "The Pink Panther" playing quietly next to me for the second time in 2 days, and dealt yet again with the universe. There are many perplexing ideas that I can never quite get my mind around.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

…a very satisfied sigh

My blog had been experiencing some serious difficulties recently and this, is so much better. I apologize to anyone who feels I stole their design. I don't really care anymore plus this is so much more appealing to my eyes.

I doubt many people read this anymore, but it still is such a relaxing thing to write nonsense in a pseudo-journal with the possibilities of dear friends catching a glimpse of my thoughts and partaking in the moments.

The only thing on my mind recently is Barcelona. My excitement is very hard to contain. I've researched many things on the web and started a list of things I must, would like, and possibly will see. I will put the list here, simply because I want to and if any others would like to look them up, please enjoy the wonders you may see hidden in their sites.

• Park Guell
• Gaudi Musuem
• Sagrada Familia
• Palau de la Musica Catalana (missing a few accent marks which I cannot find on my keyboard)
• Salvador Dali Museum
• Tirandot opera at the Gran Teatre del Liceu
• jazz concert at Jamboree

that is all I've accumlated for now. As usual, I'm sure the list will dwindle with time, finances, and whatever shopping I stumble upon. There is also the fact that I must find all these places.

As for my time today, I'm writing text for the latest brochure I am working on. My time is squished on this project and I'm very worried that I will not finish it before I leave. Writing, I must admit, is not one of my favorite parts, although it is quite a challenge to accept. No choice to accept takes away some of the intrigue. Nonetheless, I embark on this pen and ink adventure and hope that my thoughts flow in a semblance of interesting order.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

wow, another one

whoa, i'm doing so much better at posting in this last week. too bad summer is almost over. actually, no, I'm getting ready to come home. I can't believe I leave 3 weeks from tomorrow. this is so nuts. how do the summers go by so quickly?

this weekend was lovely. I was so lazy. My neighbors and I laid around all day Saturday and then had a BBQ of sorts on our patio. It was chicken and beef kebabs that were simply amazing. Sunday, we went to church then I swam with little Natalie and then we all went to the beach where Natalie and I rollerbladed on the boardwalk. It was much fun. I haven't rollerbladed in so long. I ridiculously didn't wear good socks for it so I now have 2 lovely large scrapes on my ankles that the mosquitoes just love. Yesterday was a typical work day. I swam with Natalie over my siesta and then last night we had a Moroccan couscous dish with some guests who came. It was so fun and the conversation just flowed beautifully. This morning however, I could not wake up. When I finally did, I had given myself 10 minutes before I had to be at work for prayer time. Tonight, I am going shopping with my neighbors. It is time to start picking up my souvenirs. I found some lovely lace things that my mom will so appreciate and I'm looking for a thing or two as well. Great fun!

Oh, brilliant news, I'm going to Barcelona before I leave. I have planned a 3 day trip and even have somewhere to stay, for free! Now, I am booking flights, mapping out the city and determining which sites must be seen. Yay for Barcelona!

if you haven't seen or heard of them yet, look to the right and in my sidebar is a link to my photos which have my pics in Spain so far. Enjoy!

I miss you all and can't wait til August!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

a need to write

My heart is breaking for the people in London. I think a part of me was thinking that this kind of thing could only happen in the States. I know that the rest of the world, especially Europe, is probably more prepared for this kind of thing than we are, but I still wish I could protect everyone from more tragedy. I realized how sheltered I am even here in Spain. I was settled into my routine, bonding with my supervisor laughing over projects, and suddenly she glanced at the BBC News and we both found the world again. Silly, here I am working to reach out to the world, and I seem to have lost track of it around me. How naive I am! I find myself crying with those who are devastated and praying all the more earnestly for the Kingdom. I cringe that those words sound so airy and flat once they are not hidden in my heart. My thoughts are full.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

from my corner office, otherwise known as a workroom

well, my attempts at blogging have been futile. I seem to have hit an "I don't want to sit down and write" mode, which I am forcing myself to get over. Of course, my timing now is impeccable as I am at work, about 51 minutes til lunch. I'm finally ahead on most of my projects and just waiting for feedback before the next move can be made. On my hugest(I can't decided if that is a word or not) project, I am pushing deadlines and was struggling to ideate when I had the brilliant idea to blog instead. I shall now make a slight effort to catch up on posting about the life I am in the midst of. Some might be repetitive of what has been in my newsletters, but I'm too lazy to worry about that.

Spain is beautiful. Southern Spain, or Andalucia, is beautiful and hot. My spoiled American body is easily overheated in these marvelous tile buildings that lack air conditioning. I have not ventured much outside of my city of Malaga, and I probably won't because of time, companionship, and finances. I simply cannot justify taking much adventurous trips with the generous gifts of my supporters. But, if opportunity allows, I may swing over to a near city for a change of pace. My eye has been on Barcelona, which is way north, as that is supposed to be a really cool city with interesting art wrapped through it and there is a Jamie Cullum concert there next weekend; but flights are strangely expensive in this tourist-time of year as well as I really would rather not venture that far by myself. My awful Spanish would not hold out very well I'm afraid.

Work has been good and quite knowledge-stuffed for me. I have learned some crucial design tips that I think shall be so helpful in upcoming classes/projects. I love my coworkers and somewhat dread saying goodbye to each of them in just under a month. We pray together every morning(M-F) and I think that creates that tight bond between us all. My supervisor/coach and I haven't had much time to hang out, but working together has been great. There is much to glean from her wealth of design knowledge and surprisingly, I look forward to having her correct things as she is bound to find something I wouldn't have even thought of.

My little house, the Casita, is very cozy. Tends to be quite an oven in the middle of the day, but cools off nicely in the evenings. I have disposed of more spiders in that little house than in my entire life and I have recently given up on finding them all as they are sure to come out whenever they please. I was wonderfully comforted by a coworker's wife as she said she has had trouble with spiders as well, but that it is normal since it is hatching season. My overimaginative mind went wild at this thought and was very quickly picturing every corner and fold within the house just crawling with millions of eight-legged insects. Funny how I've never been scared of spiders before and could calmly dispose of them; but now I find myself shrieking after I've killed one and turn to find another. Counting my blessings though, I have only battled spiders and termites. I'm praying the cockroaches away.

Enough about bugs, more about Spain. I absolutely love wandering the streets of downtown. I think I finally have the knack of being just friendly enough with passers-by to not be rude, but still maintain the face that any little fortune-teller or begger should please leave me alone. 2 nights ago, the other single coworkers and I(the 3 of us and one of their fiances here on a visit) spent an hour or so in the huge air conditioned department store - much like London's Harrods - and then ate dinner in Antonio Banderas' restaurant. It was a delicious atmosphere and had a barnish/pub/cavern feeling that slightly reminded me of something from "The Mask of Zorro." I ate a very good pork kebab and discussed random things at our table while silently calculating the odds of Banderas actually walking in while we were there. He didn't, but it was a delightful evening nonetheless.

Possibly my other favorite part of Spain so far has been the quaint little town of Mijas. It is one of those places where all the buildings are white-washed and the streets are tight, cobblestone and decked with pots of vibrantly colored flowers. I desperately hope my pictures turned out from that outing.

My head has been full of ponderings, especially during the quiet evenings I spend in my little Casita. I've read 3 books already and am in the 4rth now. I've read these brilliant stories about brave missionaries venturing into the areas of N. Africa. All these single women who started what I am continuing fascinate me. The stories of their houses, ministries, encounters, and what-not are so enthralling and very convicting. I find myself disappointed in my character that I cannot find the courage to drop everything back home and run to the lost and hard to be in places of the world. I dread that lifestyle and I would much rather do without this one. The dear songs of Ginny Owens have been swirling around in my head all the weeks that I have been here, especially the song "If You Want Me To." It contains the lyrics: It may not be the way I would have chosen, when you lead me to a world that's not my home. But you didn't say it would be easy, you only said I'd never go alone. In those tired, dark, and lonely hours those words have been woven through my green blanket that I draw around my already too warm body. I hope all these ramblings don't come across wrong. I am learning here and enjoying myself, but my heart very much wants to be at home, back with the classes, familiarity and intimacy of my dear friends. The blessings become even more important when you have to force yourself to count them.

Well, lunch is coming close and I should wrap up my work for the 2 hour break. Now I must ideate about what I should make for my lunch. My creative ability seems to stop when it comes to cooking. I think a nap is called for as well. I will surely write again soon, at least when the procrastinating kicks in.