journal entry, May 24
[My hosts] left for Madrid on Wednesday morning, and the weather has pretty much been awful since then, [but] I have gotten out a bit every day. Three times now I’ve walked to the bakery for croissants, and yesterday I also went to the tabac (for postcards) and got some groceries. I especially like the fresh produce market. Maybe I’d eat more fruits and vegetables if they all looked so good.
*Note: a few days later I had zucchini! Baby steps!
email, June 4
Today I went into Toulouse all by myself! I bought a bus ticket, caught the right bus, made the right transfer at the metro, then explored the city. I got kind of lost a few times, but I was always able to find my way back to somewhere I recognized (even without using my map). I did a lot of walking, and I did some shopping, too. I bought a crepe for lunch (ham and cheese), then I found a cafe where I could sit out in the sun and have some ice cream (raspberry sorbet). I did all my communications (in the stores, getting food) in French, and I only screwed up once. I’m getting much better! Then I walked to the Pont Neuf, found a new metro station, and headed home.
tweets, June 2 through June 5
- Oh, you know. Just going to throw together a dinner of duck confit and roasted vegetables.
- Five oz. cans of Coke. Who knew?
- Even when you primarily speak, read, and think in English, it will get difficult to write in English. Seriously. It took me four tries to spell “passionate” this morning (and two to get it right in this tweet).
- Today, I heard a word that I didn’t understand. “It’s either ‘salt’ or ‘room,’” I thought. Turns out it was “bowel movement.”
- Honey as a savory pizza topping. Weird. (I had ham.)
in other news
I’m finding all these wines I just love, and so far I’ve had my dad checking for them at Dusty’s, but they’re so far unable to find distributors in the US. The one I’m drinking tonight was described to me as being halfway between a rosé and a red (it’s a Mauzac). It’s delicious. The wine region I’m right next to (in?) is called Gaillac.
I’ve tried a ton of new foods since being here: scallops, duck, zucchini, couscous, sundried tomatoes, and pine nuts (I think there are a few more that I’m missing…).
Going into Toulouse by myself was a big deal for me yesterday. I’ve never done anything like that before, not even in the US. It was strangely exhilarating, and I came home again feeling as if I could do anything in the world. It was a bit like how I imagine Felix Felicis is. Yes, I’m a Harry Potter nerd even in Europe.
I’ve finally been able to do a bit of writing. I’ve been trying some prompts with a friend, and between that and the ways I’ve been getting out of my shell, I’m finding that I actually do have some things to say again. Right now I’m working on a how to piece, and I’ve gotten some work done on a piece that has the same characters as “The Woman Next Door” (in PANK 7). With any luck, I’ll actually have something to bring to my writing group in a few weeks.
One week left here. Time really does fly.