Bread, sourdough started.

Yum loaf of bread

Brownies, olive oil, 100% free of nut traces.


There are three pans of brownies waiting for a friend to pick at least one up. Rest will be eaten or frozen.

The Joys

What I won’t miss from Madrid? Let’s see…

  • The weird seasons.
    We have a sort of autumn that’s very displaced towards the end of the actual season, and you can still see trees with green leaves on (that shouldn’t be) very late in.
    A short and dry winter, not much cold, not much rain, and way too short. We might get one snow or two, with luck, but not often.
    The lengthy srping. Gets warm too soon (for my taste, at least). The trees go nuts pollinating, and adding the pollution, allergy attacks are horrible.
    And we don’t have summer, we have something akin to hell. Dry, hot, and very long. Imagine 42-44ºC in the shadows during the day, and not going below 26-28ºC at night. Impossible to do anything during the day, or to sleep at night.
  • The noise.
    There is noise. Every day, every hour of the day. It might be louder or lower, but there is constant noise. Last month’s measures gave an average of 63dB if I remember correctly. Which means we’re pretty close to what the WHO considers to be way too much.
  • Flying
    Ok, this is not technically related to only Madrid. But this past year I’ve been flying quite often. Weekends are not too bad, but as soon as there is a holiday, all the tourists get out, and go about like sheep to the slaughterhouse. And really, when I fly I just want to get there as fast as possible, and not waste time at the airport

I felt like ranting. And letting you know I’m not dead. Just busy. And tired. And annoyed. And looking forward to just move. Even tho this mean a whole other rant ;)

St. Paddy’s Day

Drink beer, wear drink1, have a shamrock, and good luck!

St Patrick's Day Shamrock St Patrick's Day Lucky Clover
  • Pattern: Knitted & Bejewelled Shamrocks by Vickie Howell
  • Yarn: Opal something or other in greens, leftovers from a pair of socks.
  • Needles: 2.5mm DPN’s
  • Gauge: Didn’t bother counting.
  • Size: 5.5cm across for the clover, and 8cm including the stem.

Made in a whopping hour! And with four leaves. Because one makes one’s luck!

  1. Green, not drink. I hadn’t even drunk any alcoholic beverage before writing this

A Big Bag

It’s not quite like MaryPoppins’ Carpet-bag, not because I don’t like hers, but because I’m looking for instructions to make one ;) It also doesn’t fit a lamp, or a night stand or an umbrella, but it does fit all the stuff I carry on Mondays to school1.

It’s a simple zippered flat bottom trapezoid bag. Bottom is wider than top and the sides are straight. It has two long wide sturdy straps so you can hung it over your shoulder to carry all the stuff. It’s fully lined, and there is a (giant) hole on the lining to insert a cardboard base to make it stiffer. It also has two small pockets inside, for tissues and other small things that I don’t want to have floating around.

  1. Folder with papers, couple of thick books, pencase, bottle of water, tupper with lunch, fruit for mid-morning snack, and other tidbits. On the way back it also carries my cardigan and scarf

International Women’s Day

International Woman’s Day (IWD) is marked on March 8 every year. It is a major day of global celebration for the economic, political and social achievements of women1.

In some countries it’s just a celebration of women as mothers & wifes. Another mothers’ day if you wish. In other countries it still claims back women’s political and human rights.

I don’t think one day is enough to celebrate what women do, to honour them. Equality is not something to be thought about once a year, but to be fought for every single day.

Some facts:

  • Of 1.2 billion people living in poverty worldwide, 70% are women
  • 80% of the world’s 27 million refugees are women
  • Women own around only 1% of the world’s land
  • Women do two-thirds of the world’s work but receive only 10% of the world’s income
  • One year out of college women earn 20% less than men and 10 years later 31% less2

And finally, a quote I like:

We will achieve gender equality when useless women reach high powerful positions.3

  1. Taken from Wikipedia
  2. Facts taken from Internacional Women’s Day Website
  3. Anonymous woman dixit

After one week…

… of class, I can already tell I’m gonna be dead most weekends.

My schedule goes as follows:

  • Mondays 9.30 till 12.45, and 16 to 17 (lab)
  • Tuesdays 9.30 till 12.45,
  • Wednesdays 8.30 till 12.45,
  • Thursdays 8.30 till 12.45,
  • Fridays 8.30 till 12.45.

Of course to this you have to add the hour of transport to get to university, and the hour back. And waking up an hour before I leave the house to do morning ablutions, dress and break the fasting. Plus expending all afternoons after lunch studying, doing exercises and preparing the classes for the following day.

There will be one Monday when I’ll have another lab, between 14 and 15.30 approximatedly. On Mondays I’m taking lunch along, since the food at university is over priced, bad and I doubt it’d pass a Health inspeaction either. On top of that, there are no vegetarian options. So bento lunches it is for me. Or most likely a salad and a sandwich.

Life otherwise is boring on this side. I haven’t been knitting much either. I think I haven’t picked up knitting in over two weeks. No time, not feeling like it, or just plainly too tired. I have started some sourdough, hopefully in a week I can have sourdough bread and other tasty things!

Not Lost

Just too busy.

I’ve been sick since after Christmas (see that previous post, I didn’t have the strenght to post any more after that…). Got a sinusitis that took me several times to the doctor, got me on two rounds of antibiotics, corticosteroids nosespray, and other assorted medicines. I have to go for the second skull x-ray next week to make sure it’s gone. Cross yer fingers, press yer thumbs, do as ye want, wish me luck!

It’s also exam period. I’ve already had two exams, and I have two more, coming monday morning and tuesday evening. I’m not prepared, because the last month I haven’t been able to study. Guess why? That goddamn sinusitis didn’t let me. I had such a brain fog, nasty headaches and lack of focus, opening a book was a chore that took all my strength, and understanding anything at all was nearly impossible. So, that’s all. Previous two exams I felt like I could have stayed home, but wanted to go in case they ended being easy. The next two I’ll go in case they end being easy as well, which I seriously doubt, but if I don’t go, they will be. Murphy’s laws hate me.

Jan’s coming to Madrid on wednesday. He hasn’t traveled here in over a year, and he’s really looking forward to it. We’ll be going to eat out a lot, and will hopefully walk around the city cow hunting. Other than that, we plan on relaxing and spending five days not doing much. We both need a vacation.

We’re house hunting in Belgium, around Ghent. It takes a lot of time and phonecalls and looking around and online. I wish people would make accurate descriptions of the houses, detailed and up-to-date. And same goes for the pictures, blurry, bad frames that show only details and not the shape or state of the room. Not to say those pictures that were taken 3 years ago, and all this time the house has been left to its own devices. What on the pictures looks like a well laid floor turns out to be vinyl coming apart and rippling from humidity… We have a budget, which is a bugger cause it’s limited. The houses we like are at least 100k over it usually.

That’s a life update for you. Stay tuned, maybe next time it won’t take a month and a half to post again!