Culture shock

5 Nov

When we moved to Spain, I knew that going back to the states periodically would give us random bits of culture clash. And sure, enough the last two weeks in California gave me ample opportunities to experience this. In the parking lot of Wal-Mart (don’t ask me what I was doing there!) I saw two […]

Home for a Third Culture Kid

28 Oct

This term came up frequently in conversation this weekend with various people I met or interacted with during London Decom and the tangential socializing.  More than one person teared up when they realized that I had just articulated something that resonated deeply with their experience, so I thought it worthy of sharing with others as […]

Biking and walking in Barcelona

4 Oct

[ It’s been too long since we’ve posted here — life in Barcelona has swallowed us up! ] One of the things that keeps impressing me is how people get along in this city. A city with 3 million people (in the greater Barcelona area) provides ample challenges to keep everyone out of everyone else’s […]

September is my new New Year

25 Sep

Recently I’ve been thinking that September has replaced January 1st as my new New Year. In Southern Europe, it is a time when people are returning from their summer holidays, refreshed from their full MONTH of PAID vacation (which is so difficult for many Americans to comprehend) and ready to dive back into their day-to-day […]


8 Oct

I write this as I prepare to leave for a 13-day stint in the US tomorrow.  Today is only my second day home after a week in London, and when we left for London we had only been home a week since getting back from our wedding in Bologna.  I am loving all the adventures, […]

Döner: the European Burrito

21 Sep

Burritos have been on my mind lately.  There’s been a meme going around the internet that keeps reminding me that it has been FIVE MONTHS since I’ve eaten a burrito.  Five months!! There are a few Mexican restaurants here, but they are sad imitations of real Mexican food.  I would not order a burrito from […]

A few insights into Italian culture

19 Sep

In the two days since I returned from spending a week in Bologna and a day in Florence, I’ve been noting more differences between Italian culture and Spanish culture now that I’m seeing them in juxtaposition: I barely ate any vegetables in Italy. I mean, almost NO vegetables. I’d estimate that I cumulatively ate 6 […]

Navigating banking and bill paying in a foreign land

5 Sep

I wasted several hours today trying to figure out how to pay our mobile phone bills.  This story is a great illustration of numerous experiences we’ve had trying to navigate the banking, bill paying, and bureaucracy here.  The systems for these sorts of things are pretty different from the US, so it’s all a learning process […]

We love lemon!

2 Sep

As a Mediterranean country, citrus grows well here.  So it’s not surprising to find a lot of lemon used in beverages here, and a bit in the cuisine as well.  Lemons are cheap and are often sold in 1-kilo bags (usually 8-10 lemons, depending on their size). It didn’t take much time for us to […]

Living in the land of guapa

23 Aug

Greetings from Menorca! You may not have heard of the island of Menorca. Its a small island, part of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean — most people probably heard of Mallorca, the literal larger sister island to Menorca. In Menorca they speak a dialect of Catalan called Menorquí and in a lot of senses […]