november is hurrying along into december – the last leaves are falling and most days have a dull, greyish, fog-filled sameness to them that often calles for depression and sadness – and it really could be quite easy to succumb to all that – however, my november was rather pretty cool until now
right in the beginning i went to karlsruhe for the german finale of science slam – no great pictures here, as it was all rainy and grey, but jackie and i fell i love with the bathroom tiles in our hotel room
the journey back home was wonderful – i stopped in ludwigshafen to see my family: my aunt, uncle and godson, where i stayed over night; my cousin, his wife and two kids, who invited me over for dinner and a good play session with the kids (barbie with the six-year-old and “what’s this?” with the two-year-old); then sitting snugly in the car with my other cousin and her husband, who dropped me off home on their way to hamburg
coming back home, i went to see the new james bond with the girls – in english, of course – and apart from the 45 minutes of commercials it was a great night out – also this november, i went to a fantastic reading by john burnside of his novel *summer of drowning*, which i had coincidentaly gotten as a birthday gift – i didn’t like the book when i first read it, but having listened to burnside read and talk about it, i am desperate to give it a second try
also, november has been very much dominated for my new-found love for sewing – i am taking a class and have working on a skirt, apparently a complicated one, as six sessions have passed and i am still not finished – but i made use of my learned knowledge and finished a simply skirt yesterday – i had a bit of silk fabric lying around ever since my birthday (one of my gifts was wrapped in it) and i simply added a waistband (left-over fabric of my other skirt) and finished the whole thing in one afternoon – i am very proud and you can look forward to further sewing projects of mine
best of bilbao – five days vacation with my mom – it could have been hell, but it was rather fantastic – we should make it a yearly institution – and bilbao was the perfect choice – it’s a yet l unknown pearl of a vacation destination – easy to reach via plane and the airport conveniently located just about 2o minutes outside of the city, a bus leaving every half hour or so and only costing € 1,35
there’s plenty of culture to go around, museums for the rainy days and amazing art right outside throughout the whole town, not to forget the fantastic mix of architecture – we made do with a day at the guggenheim, since the hockney exhibition really was the whole reason for choosing bilbao in the first place and the weather was too nice to spend indoors
bilbao is within easy reach of some truly beautiful beaches – it takes you about 30 to 45 minutes on the subway and then a walk or bus ride to get to plentzia, a beautiful little fishing village or sopelana with its breathtaking coastal views and beaches
we also spent hours roaming through the old town, shopping or chilling at bars, eating pinxtos and watching people and somehow ending up twice in the same place for dinner – but who could pass up an amazing three-course-menu including a bottle of wine and one of water for just € 16? – yes, bilbao is that cheap – the trip to the beach costs about € 1,18!
our hotel was a 5 star affair, which we could afford because they gave us an amazing deal – it was located right at the river, a 5 minute walk from the guggenheim and a tram station right outside – it had air-conditioned rooms, a pool and lovely bed with crisp white linen and loads of comfy pillows
there’s also the puente colgante, the oldest transporter bridge in the world – a world heritage site and truly amazing – walking across is a little scary, but maybe that’s just me!
i also placed countless rhino stickers in cool locations and started a love affair with spanish ham and sunshine that leaves me with a lovely sun-kissed tan
more photos to be found here, as usual – http://teacarophoto.wordpress.com/
finally! summer vacation – i have packed a bikini and a couple of sun dresses, lots of sun screen and a couple of books – it is supposed to be 39° C on friday and i plan on either laying at the pool all day or taking a day trip to the near by atlantic coast and chilling on the beach and in the ocean
plans apart from lazing about are: buying shoes – sandals, ballarina flats and possibly new dancing heels; going to see hockney at the guggenheim, possibly lunching at the guggenheim, taking the bilbobus, because it is simply the best name for a bus ever, taking a ridiculous amount of photos, buying a new basque style hat, not being embarrased how poor my spanish skills have gotten and possibly improving them
okay, maybe i am addicted to that expensive, fast-paced, crazy town by the thames because even though it is not my favourite place in the world, i seem to be going there quite a lot – this time it will be a crazy, two-day trip, basically to visit a friend, go shopping and buy theatre tickets – but also, to just get away – a return-trip to london via plane is cheaper than a single train ticket to berlin – this is totally freaking me out, but there we go – all forces are calling me to return to jolly england and have a good time, drinking tea, eating biscuits and shopping for tights and *finally* hunter wellies of my own
why don’t we pack up our bags and go an adventures more often?
i’ve been back for a week now and life already feels pretty much the same it was – this proves my point exactly – one needs to get out for good every once in a while in order not to give in to the craziness that is everyday live – it’s not that i don’t like my friends or don’t enjoy getting drunk and dancing through a night or rush around doing things, it is just very stressful and not at all to be compared to the quiet country life i led in sweet, dear yorkshire, where the most exciting thing to happen was the smell of chocolate and the finding of a baby field vole in a stack of hay – well, off to berlin i am for now – again just rushing from place to place, never stopping, never thinking twice and imagining to be having the time of my life, when all i really want to do is to get back on the moors, open a b&b and have a large herd of sheep surrounding the house, where i sit reading by the roaring fire on cold winter nights