Happy Friday! I finished my first class yesterday and turned in my final last night, so I’m either en route to Milan or in Milan as you read this. Expect a recap sometime next week! And follow along on Instagram. I like to Instagram-story things. Now, because I desperately needed a dose of positivity (explained below), let’s talk about some of the awesome things from this week!
I had a rough couple days after getting back from San Sebastián. I don’t know what it was, but I haven’t been sleeping, my stomach has been hurting, and I guess I was feeling mentally off. Before I knew it, I was up to my elbows in chocolate wrappers and in tears on Wednesday afternoon. So, I had to figure out what would make me feel better. (In the moment, the answer was an excess of chocolate, peanut butter, and sweet potato chips. Also, Netflix and a face mask and nail-painting.)
See, I know that in Chicago, if I’m in my room to do all my studying and stuff, I’m miserable. Here, coming back to my room after a long day of class has felt really nice… until it didn’t anymore. In Chicago, I head to the Hyatt or CorePower when I need a break. Here, I didn’t have that.
There is a gym I belong to here, but scheduling time to go has been a pain. You can’t just head to the gym, you have to book it and they only let 8 people work out individually at a time and the classes don’t line up with my schedule. Basically, it makes for a good experience if you get to be one of the 8 people, but a bad one if you don’t.
Plus, going for a run or heading to the gym or doing a workout in my room is great if I want to spend time alone, but I was missing the community aspect, too. I decided to spring for some expensive cycling classes and also a yoga membership. I took my first class at Dynamo yesterday, and while it was a little bit challenging with the French, mostly I needed to know “left”, “right”, and numbers. And guess what? It felt so good! I’ll probably go to a class or two a week, just to mix things up and get me out a little more. I’ll let you know how yoga goes next week.
Truly cannot believe I’m saying this, because I have not found very many frozen meals I’ve liked in the U.S., even though I keep hopefully trying ones from Trader Joe’s. Anyway, during my first week here, I noticed several frozen meals that had a base of “mashed” vegetables. Just like salmon with broccoli and chicken with zucchini and tomato sauce, as opposed to rice- or pasta-based meals. So, I thought I’d give them a try. They look as unappetizing as most frozen meals, and while they’re pretty small, they’re surprisingly tasty. See, on weekends when I don’t travel, I feel like I have some time to cook, but otherwise… I’ve basically been relying on those frozen meals, plus rotisserie chicken, smoked salmon, avocados, and sweet potatoes. With dark chocolate and spoonfuls of peanut butter for dessert.
My mom sent me a package of clothes (for warm weather… which was supposed to get here before Spain, but it turned out fine) and included packets of nut butter and shelf-stable salmon. My grandparents sent me a Halloween card. I feel loved.
The tram picks up right outside the dorm and drops off about a 10-minute walk from school. However, being on the tram between 8:30 and 9:00 in the morning is like… not having enough air to breathe or room to exist. People just shove themselves on and hold their breaths and hope the doors close. It’s horrible. So, even if you’re outside at 8:30, a couple trams might pass before you can actually get on one. And then it’ll get stuck and you’ll be delayed anyway.
So, I decided that if I’m already trying to leave by 8:30 and not getting there till 9:20 or later, I might as well walk. It’s about a 47-minute walk, and as long as it’s not raining and my bag isn’t too heavy, I’d totally rather walk in fresh (okay, sometimes cigarette-y) air and listen to podcasts than be squeezed onto a tram. Even if it messes up my hair. It’s been nice to do that the last few mornings, and I think I’ll continue for the most part.
After cycling yesterday, I literally walked through the streets of Paris while seeing my dad. I mean, he was driving and I was only half looking at him and half trying to make my way to the metro station, but in theory, he could have seen the streets of a city 4,000 miles away on his phone.
Also yesterday, I was waiting with a couple other students for our conversation assistant when I realized I meant to buy a train ticket for London for next Saturday. The conversation assistant was running late and I knew I might forget again later and there hadn’t been many tickets left the last time I checked. So, while I was standing in the middle of a Paris street, I bought train tickets on my phone.
I don’t know. Just pretty cool that there’s a little computer in my pocket that I don’t appreciate enough.
How do you get out of a funk?
What are you loving this week?