2005-11-29 - 12:42 p.m.

The house is mine again. The cats are all outside right now, bounding about through leaves and digging around in their usual spots trying to reclaim their territory. I am doing much of the same…reclaiming my territory. Not worrying about having enough clean towels or the fact that the kitchen is an utter mess, changing my clothes without closing the door, eating olives right from the container out of the fridge. It’s nice.

There are some nice things about our ten days of guests…I went out and about and was able to see for the first time, that I actually have acclimated here. I know my way around things, I can understand waiters and people on the street, I can drive, I have places to show people. If people had come here right after I had arrived here it would have been different. If we hadn’t had these visitors I still would have been sitting here thinking that I have been wasting time these last months, that I didn’t know anything about this place that I live. But I feel more confident now…and that is good. It was also nice to have people here because it kind of reset things…if that makes sense. Maybe I was getting too stuck in a rut of life, having people here forced me to forgo my usual routine and now it feels broken and that is good because I needed a little change. And it was also good because there were moments when I broke away from the group, went out and did my own thing and those were some really great moments….I appreciated the solitude more than I have ever appreciated it before. I watched the sunset, all by myself, sitting on the beach in the cold wind while the waves churned in front of me. I never sit on the beach and watch the sunset because I never need to get away.

My friend Natallie was part of our group of guests. I haven’t seen any of my friends since I left the U.S. in May. I wish she had been able to stay longer than just three days…and I wish that she had been here alone, without our hodgepodge group of people. I wish I could have shown her what my life was like here but instead I was just able to show her party, party, late nights and chaos. It was nice to see her, it was nice to have someone around who I could reminisce with, someone that I knew very well and didn’t have to take time out to get to know and who didn’t have to be reserved around me while they were getting to know me. I know all of Eric’s friends…but I worked thirty hours a week for three years with Natallie. She knows details of my personality that even my husband doesn’t know.

The other girl that was here with us is the fiancée of one of Eric’s best friends. She’s a really awesome person, she’s one of those people who have had so much experience in this life that you can’t believe one person could have so much going on. She is also 36 years old and maybe when I am 36 someone will think that sort of thing about me. The one thing about her that will never be something I will be is that she is pretty fearless. Of course, I have to keep remembering that her fearlessness comes from the fact that she lived here in Spain for a while before and that she has had over 20 years of Spanish…I could probably be fearless too if I knew this language as well as she does. I was feeling that I was pretty fearless for a while…until she came here and started just taking buses here and there and could navigate the trains without even thinking about it. She just goes…and goes and goes. Her fiancé went back to D.C. yesterday and she is staying another week in Spain. I dropped her off at the airport this morning and she is taking a train down south. I admire that.

I also dropped my husband off at the airport this morning. I am utterly alone for the next two days and I can’t remember a time when I needed to be alone like this so badly. I am excited and relieved.

Yesterday I was getting really agitated. I wanted to reclaim my house. I wanted my cats to be comfortable again. They just spent the majority of the last ten days stuck in my bedroom. Yesterday Eric went to work and Laura went to Barcelona and I slept until 2 in the afternoon and then started laundry and cleaning stuff and Eric was supposed to be home BY 4:45 because I had to take my cat to the vet and I took a shower at 3:30 and was ready to go by 4:30, had the cat and the carrier ready to go…and no Eric. At 4:50 still no Eric and I was freaking out because I was going to be late and I hate being late especially when it’s difficult for me to even say, “I have an appointment…” and I can’t apologize easily for being late. I hate being late anyway, I think being late is one of the rudest things a person can do. So at 4:55 I was REALLY freaking out. And then, a few minutes later five huge trucks came boiling down our road, stopped, blocked everything and then started drilling and jack hammering and all the cats took off and hid, including the one that had to go to the vet…there was no way I would be able to find him to take him to the vet, even if Eric showed up right then…which he wouldn’t because there was no way to get down our road so I call him and he says he is just leaving (WHAT???) and I tell him not to bother…and I was so fucking mad I couldn’t see straight. I was SO mad. I kicked things. At 5:10 the trucks left. At 5:12 I stormed out of the house and walked down to Sant Pere to get movies. It was the only thing I could think of that would keep me from completely blowing up. I kicked garbage and cans all the way down to town. I also didn’t put socks on and now I have blisters all over my feet. And that pisses me off. If I had my own transportation OR if Eric would have been here on time, or even five minutes late, I would have been fine. I would have had the cat in the carrier before the trucks arrived, we would have been gone before the trucks arrived. But no. And I can’t get my own transportation now because of that recent development making it so we have no idea how much longer we will be here. It could be a month, it could be a year. ANYWAY, I rented two movies, came back here and got into my pajamas and curled up on the couch with popcorn. I felt much better by the end of the second movie. I am still mad when I think about it, but I am no longer raging and I am able to just let it go…rationally I do realize that Eric is in the middle of a huge project and probably there was absolutely no way he could have left on time, but, I was angry and I am still agitated about it. I knew I should have just taken the car yesterday, I don’t know why I didn’t. Anyway, it’s done and over and it will work out just fine the only bad thing now is that now my day today is all fucked up because I have to bring the cat in at 5:30 and I had big plans for my two solitary days.

I am not as mad about the missed appointment yesterday as I am about the ham thing. I am so mad about the ham thing that I can’t even write about it. I am totally pissed off about the ham thing. I am more mad that someone didn’t understand why I was mad about the ham thing than I am about the actual ham thing. I do not need someone telling me that I shouldn’t be mad about someone giving me a gift of ham. I do not think it is at all funny. It might have been funny of this person did not know, VERY WELL, that I am a vegetarian. It might have been funny if the ham had not been delivered smack dab in the middle of my vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner. And it might have been funny if it wasn’t a huge fucking stupid gross LEG of ham that is now going to be completely wasted and is in fact, STILL IN MY HOUSE. I don’t think it is funny at all. And I feel that I have every right to be totally fucking pissed off about it. I didn’t say a word to the person that brought it…I didn’t let on that I was mad about it…but later I was almost reprimanded by someone about being pissed off about it. They said, “I can’t believe you are mad that someone brought a gift, this is their culture and a specialty of this region.” And I think that is bullshit. Total and utter bullshit. There are many things you could bring as a gift that don’t include the words LEG OF HAM. The thing that pisses me off the most is that this huge, complete leg, is going to be totally wasted. I tried to get people to take it with them, the thing weighs probably 30 pounds. No one would take it. It’s just sitting here and it makes me sick and sad. Sick and sad. Nice gift. Fuck off.

Anyway…I am alone now. I have a couple days in which to write the rest of my Nano novel. I can do it. I can do it. Also, I am going to rent more movies and eat more popcorn and let my cats do whatever they want to do. Then Eric returns and we will have a couple quiet days back to normal routine and I am looking forward to having some time with him again. Then, my birthday…I plan to do nothing but sit in front of the fire all day with a book and coffee. Eric is going to make me a salad for dinner. He makes really good salad. And then, Sunday we depart for Vienna. I am trying not to freak out about it. Right now I just don’t want to go. Period. But I know I would regret it and I also know that I am going to have an incredible time. I just don’t want to leave the cats or get on an airplane.


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