Dr Vino* (my boss and dept chief) tells me that Barcelona reminds him of Paris (one of my favourite cities on the planet). He's a wine afficionado, and so I had to ask him where he'd go for good wines in Spain. He gave me several wineries that offer tours. Hopefully they offer good cheese too.
This trip has allowed me an excuse to ask some of my favourite doctors what they'd recommend to people going to visit their countries. Dr Français sent me a list of a dozen (or more) museums and some really beautiful castles right outside Paris. I adore this man. He's so polite and v shy. I wish he'd speak more because his accent is so loverly. Dr McBritish gave me some ideas of free stuff to do in London (the most over-priced city in the world *eg*). I love him as well. Probably because I can pin his accent to the city he's from and it amuses me. It's my silly talent that I can't use for good. Or profit, really.
My only concern is that I speak neither Spanish nor Catalan. My personal theory is that you should never impose your language on a foreign country and should try to communicate in their language. In that regard, I've asked one of our housekeepers (at work, I'm not in a position to afford a housekeeper, let alone housekeepers) to teach me Spanish. Thus far, I can say: 'How much is ...', 'Where's the bathroom?', 'I'd like one/two/three beers/margaritas/daiquiris' (v important!), 'I'm lost', 'Sorry, I don't speak Spanish', and 'Help me'. I figure learning the days of the week, etc. are rather silly at this point. Just the basics, ma'am!
At least I have French and a penchant for using British slang for the other two countries. No worries, right?
* All names have been romanticized to protect the
After lurking about on a writing board, I finally joined. There's so much information, advice, good news, etc. The writing community is a very interesting place. Already, I found authors that I admired long before finding them on the board. It's interesting to see their stories played out in old posts. They're like a beacon of hope for the unpublished among us!
The board also allowed me to find two writing groups. All the writing groups I've been involved with in the past have faded away. People find new interests (writing was a hobby to begin with), or they realize that writing isn't just writing -- you have to read and give feedback if you want the same in kind. I'd be lying if I didn't say I'm excited to meet writerly types. They're in it because this is what they want to do.
Last thing on the writing front, I received the much talked about 1/4 page rejection slip from Barry Goldblatt. He was one of my 3 star agents. I hand picked him because he represents authors like Holly Black, Cecil Castellucci, and Libba Bray. He said my work wasn't right for him, which made me sad because of his client list. *sigh* Back to the drawing board!