the return

I miss the blog. But unless you want to hear me complain about how hard it is to learn Spanish (the easiest language taught at FSI?), I figured that I should just keep my mouth shut. But I'm ready to be positive again - Mom, can I come out of my room now?

So yes, we've been in Spanish for 18.5 weeks now and have a mere 5.5 to go. (How many months are women pregnant? 36? Wow. That is some perspective for sure.) The studies have been truly wonderful; I have learned things that I never anticipated like history lessons, how to prepare and deliver a presentation, we've studied the economy, political, judicial, health and school systems both in the US, Central and South America. Not only that but I've learned all, or nearly all, my weaknesses in English (and life?) that are magically carried over to the new language, highlighted magnificently under the painfully bright spotlight of adept professors and a keen-eyed-ever-watching wife. (I love you more!)

The move is drawing closer and closer as well. It's almost palpable at this point. It's drawing on time to start eating all the food reserves (my personal favorite), separating clothes, books and kitchen items to go to storage or post, and lots of good old-fashioned lists. I love lists. At any moment I have lists of books I want to read, exercise plans, songs I want to sing at karaoke, restaurants to try, store lists - you name it, I list it. Buuut, the lists to get ready to move abroad leave a little to be desired. When I see "prepare last will and testament" on a list I immediately put the list down and begin online shopping. Seems healthy and perfectly normal to me.

Anyway, I applied for a job at the Embassy in San Jose - cross your fingers for me! I'll detail more later if I'm so lucky as to nab it.

For now, I need to prepare my presentation for class this afternoon. I'm thinking something special and hardly political: Zombie Ants.

Former Secretary Albright: on being a woman and a diplomat

Like all nerds, I appreciate a good TED talk.   In this one, former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright "talks bluntly about politics and diplomacy, making the case that women's issues deserve a place at the center of foreign policy."    A girl after my own feminist heart. :)

When I graduated from Smith College in 2003, Secretary Albright was my Commencement speaker.   Que suerte!



We CA girls met up with some of my best lady friends at Smith for some winter fun.

Sec. Clinton puts women's rights at the forefront

And yet another reason why I have the coolest boss ever.

The secretary of state is on a mission: putting women’s rights at the forefront of a rapidly emerging new world order.

In other news, Spanish is going super bien. Sigo disfrutando el idioma. I got a 2+ on my last two evaluations and am hoping and praying for that coveted 3 at the end of April, when Spanish training ends and ConGen begins. Eva is also continuing to enjoy her Spanish class. She, however, is trying to show me up by studying twice as hard as I am. That's what you get when you marry an overachiever, I guess. I'll stick with being a Type A- (ambitious, but a bit floja - lazy, for you non-Spanish speakers!).

In closing, I leave you with my favorite Spanish song of the week (err, month).