I haven’t been blogging on this trip because one, it has been really freaking busy and two, I am writing articles for the Weekly Alibi along the way (Yay! Check out tomorrow’s article about Mexico!) I decided to do a blog today, our last full day in Spain. Tomorrow we have a late check out and then we head to the airport because we are off to UGANDA!
NEW MEXICO-MEXICO-SPAIN-UGANDA-NEW YORK-NEW MEXICO. I calculated it a while back and it’s something like 23,000 miles including in-country travel. It’s bananas.
The Alibi articles are about the work I am doing out here, but here’s a blog about nonsense. It’s just me writing about traveling around. No business stuff, just ridiculous crap.
Look! A castle!
Mexico City was awesome. The traffic is a little crazy for my taste. We were on a schedule with our hosts who would pick us up in cars but I wish I had found time to take public transportation because I think that would be the way to go there. One time, it took us almost 2 hours to go 7 miles. It was a fun group so the ride was enjoyable but…the traffic is not my favorite. I like to go underground in the dark with the rats and ride a tube that smells funny to get to where I am going. That’s my jam. I love the food in Mexico. If you know me, you know that I love all things made from corn and will eat salsa with a spoon. Every corn tortilla tasted homemade and the salsa was spicy. We stayed in a neighborhood called Zona Rosa (the pink zone.) We asked Lorena why they called it that and she said, “because it is the LGBTQ part of town.” Ahhhhhh. Zona Rosa. Excellent.
Now we are in Madrid, Spain and we are also in the LGBTQ part of town. It’s not called the pink zone, but there are rainbow flags in all the bars and stores and same sex couples are everywhere. I was asking Aaron what is the most respectful and thoughtful way to describe this part of town and he said it’s the gayborhood. I told him I didn’t think that was what you should say but he stated that is what Byron and Brandon call it and we defer to them on all things gay. So in both Mexico and Spain we have lived in the gayborhood. And it has been rad.
***Sorry if I have offended anyone. That is never my intention. I will happily take all suggestions for proper descriptions. Also, I warned you this was nonsense.
Madrid is a big, lively city. We’ve been taking advantage of the time to work a lot after the World Theatre Congress (more on that in the Alibi article but let me just say that the TCG delegation was full of the coolest people ever. Every one of them is an inspiration to me.) but also wandering around, doing touristy things- having a beer on Plaza Mayor, visiting the cathedral and Museo Nacional del Prado. It is nice having a little break. Also, I love the churches. I am not religious, but the art inside churches is spiritual for me. Churches are holy. No matter your views.
One thing that is often difficult in Europe is the street sign. Street signs in the US are prominent and bright green. In Europe, they are usually on buildings and a little hard to find. In Madrid, they are plaques with pictures. OH SHUT UP, how charming is that? I still get easily lost but I am so taken with the street signs.
Here I am!
Madrid was a little expensive but worth the 3-day break. This whole trip was a labor of love, especially financially. I was invited to Mexico City and Uganda and there is host support with both of these expeditions (accommodation, food, local travel, etc.) but on the whole this was a self-funded trip. Taking extra gigs, saving up, and the help of my amazing and generous parents, who for the past year and half every holiday when my mom would say, “happy (random holiday) do you two want anything?” I would say, “can we just save anything you would gift us as help towards our summer trip?” And she would. Of course, as an accountant she would keep track and we basically cashed in gifts for a plane ticket. That coupled with airline miles and a bit of credit and here we are! Living the dream. I know it isn’t the most responsible way to live but it is the most joyful. At least for Aaron and me. I love this work and it’s important to me to continue doing it, even when there are no outside funds to support it. I’m envious of my colleagues with company money set aside for travel and networking but wasting time on envy does nothing. Just keep pushing forward. Do what you can. Use what you have. It’s always a pleasure to be invited and I am grateful for the assistance in order to come.
Beers on the plaza.
Also, my parents rock because they are watching our house and most importantly our little creatures which saves us a TON on housesitters and our peace of mind is huge when we know our little pup is on my mom’s lap while the cats are being brushed and fussed over by my dad. The creatures really have it better when we are away. Spoiled. Rotten. Thanks Joyce and Adren. You two are pretty great.
Likewise the Tricklock team holding down the fort, even now as we are fundraising like mad. They work hard and check in and Hannah and I continue our daily texts of ridiculous photos and random thoughts. We text “hahahaha” a lot. It’s a good time.
Okay y’all AFRICA is up next! The project we are working on is too much to go into right now but stay tuned. It’s exciting and new. I really, truly have no idea where it will take us. We’ve got our gear (well, Aaron has his gear-the project is a lot of filming) and our hearts and our tenacity. I always say I am woman who makes things happen. Let’s see if I can put my money where my mouth is.
See you soon New Mexico loves.