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Funny things I want to jot down:

1. Sometimes we ask the other professors what certain sayings (frases hechos) in Spanish mean, because there's a ton of them, and they rarely translate literally. So I was asking Ricardo what exactly "pasar el arroz" meant. I knew it had something to do with getting older (particularly women, because it seems like it's a crime in almost every society for women to get old whereas it's fine for men), but I still wasn't sure about the context. He explained to me that it means something's passing you by because you're getting older. And then he says "For example," and shouts down the lunchtable at the principal "the rice has passed Maria Jesus for having kids!" (El arroz ha pasado a Ma Jesus para tener hijos), and everyone starts cracking up while she laughs and lets him have it. Apparently Ricardo is only 3 months younger than her, so he's always teasing her about her age. He knows no fear. Definitely something that would be a little more jarring in American culture, but totally normal here. So get in the Spanish spirit! Go make blunt remarks about your coworkers (or better yet, boss!) in front of everyone else.

2. In Madrid, as in Lexington and Cincinnati, as soon as there's any form of precipitation, fog, or unusual weather of any kind, everyone forgets how to drive. It's nice to know panic unites us all. As such, in the wake of a healthy serving of fog on Wednesday morning, there was an accident on the highway, and traffic was backed up monstrously. The bus drivers were chatting back and forth to each other on their radios about how awful the traffic was, and they devised a strategem: tag-teaming in and out of the merge lanes! The system worked like this: both buses would go into the empty merge lane on the far right, and one bus would fight their way back into traffic as the lane gave out. Then they would pause and let the second bus get in front of them. All of this was accompanied by them honking at each other as they passed and cracking jokes back and forth on their radios. It was pretty funny, I have to say, and definitely made waiting in traffic a lot more interesting.

Today I feel like I have a hangover without having drunk anything last night. The one symptom I'm missing (thank goodness) is the nausea. WTF, winter. Stop getting me sick. At least I have Monday and Tuesday to rest up before I go to London on Thursday! :D Woohoo!


Yay!  Hug the trees!
that's Pharaoh Bob to you.

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