Hola a 2014

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Apologies for the very late New Year´s greetings; I haven´t had a lot of motivation to write recently. For reasons I don´t really wish to broadcast too much about on the internet, 2014 hasn´t brought me a lot of joy so far. That doesn´t stop me from wanting to wish you all a very Happy New Year and a Feliz Ano Nuevo, though!

I spent New Year´s eve in France, in the ski resort of Le Corbier.

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Le Corbier is a really family friendly resort, which meant it was perfect for less-experienced (fairly rubbish) skiers like myself because there were lots of easy blue runs, but also that the new year was celebrated at 6.30pm! Not realising this, we were in the middle of dinner, but were able to watch the fireworks from the balcony:

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There was also supposed to be a torchlight descent of the ski instructors, from the top of Mt Corbier into the village. However, after about 20 minutes, they had moved a miniscule amount – probably about 10 metres – presumably due to the bad weather that night. By this time, most people had got cold and/or bored and gone inside! It wasn´t the pretty spectacle I´d expected but I appreciate the idea! Thankfully, there was enough of an adult contingent to make a night in a bar good fun later, too.

The day after coming back from France to spend a night in Yorkshire, I returned to …France! Due to strong winds in Bilbao, we weren´t able to land there …although we did try. The turbulence was awful and we came fairly close to hitting a wing, which shows just how much we were bouncing around! A lady in the row behind me was sick and the baby infront started crying. Or, rather, it was dry eyed and making horrible scratchy siren-like noises, and didn´t stop doing it for at least half an hour. After two attempts to land and another twenty minutes in the reeking, noisy plane, waiting to see if the weather would change, we were diverted to Biarritz. I´m a tolerant person and I like children, so on the way past, I was just about able to resist punching the baby´s mother in the face for bringing it on the plane. Other people looked like they were closer to doing it!

On the same day I received a bit of a shock and some really bad news. As you might guess, I wasn’t in the best of moods when, after a three hour bus journey and a hotel stay because I’d missed the last bus home, I arrived at the bus station to find that all bar one bus had been cancelled that day due to lack of interest (it was 6th January, which is a(nother) Bank Holiday in Spain) and I had to wait another 3 hours in the cold. I’m trying to think of a happy up-side to finish this paragraph with, but other than that I’m now safe and well, I can´t.

Life goes on in La Rioja, and I’ve now completed my first full week back at work. Despite my head being in this sort of state…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-AM-D1ojhs&feature=youtu.be

…I’ve spent my weekend doing productive things like going for walks, joining the gym and lesson planning, leaving me very little time to cry to Taylor Swift , eat chocolate and watch rubbish movies…

This week I’ve been giving my students a taste of Yorkshire …literally!

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Faux-pas of the week: My Spanish is a little rusty as I didn’t use it at all over Christmas, so there have been a few! But a personal favourite is this:
A teacher is planning a ski-trip and asked if I wanted to come. “Si”, I said, “pero tengo que alquilar los esquís y un sombrero.” (I need to hire skis and a hat) It turns out that sombrero doesn´t mean hat in general, like I thought, but that a sombrero means a big floppy Mexican hat in Spanish too! The silver lining is that I now know the word for helmet: casco.

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