Sunday, June 29, 2008

Lately... funny things

Lea Anne, Nicole and I trekked out to one of Ilaria's dance recitals.
I have tried for years to get to see my little Ilaria do her hip hop thing.
Finally--this was my chance.

It was outside of Florence a little bit, so we had all prepared ourselves for a long night- especially since the show didn't start until 9pm.
While taking the bus to meet more of Ilaria's friends to catch a ride to the theater we were in pretty good moods.
Even after being crammed into the back of the Panda was seeming laughable as we embarked on our journey to Campibisensio.

That's right. You've never heard of it.
There's no reason you should've. It is in the middle of nowhere.

We park the car, walk in and find our seats-- ready for a good show.
To be honest, I love watching people dance.
I am excited to see Ilaria and wishing Laura was with me so we good reenact our obsession with "So you think you can dance" in real life.

All these thoughts are put on hold as I take in my surroundings.
Imagine your high school cafetorium and you're on the right track.

We are sitting in folding chairs and staring at a stage decorated with the theater's name: Real Space.
And this is just the beginning.

Lea Anne and I peruse the program and realize that Ilaria is dancing in the 24th performance--out of 36.

Still in good spirits, we sit back and laugh at the cute little girls in tutus staring off to the side of the stage for directions as they spin.
Sometime after the fourth belly dancing number, I start to suffer from a mild headache.
No worries though, I'm tough.

Finally, after an intermission and several performances by Eduardo--a half-naked Italian leaping machine--Ilaria's group is up.
They were great.
So glad we could cheer on our friend.

Mission accomplished.
We began looking for a way out.

We do the round of "ciaos" and bacis to all the other girls and sneak out the back--
determined to call a cab and get home.

Time: 11pm
Hours of Recital endurance: 2 solid hours.
Moods: Tired, but uplifted due to surety of taxi arrival.

Fast forward 30 minutes.
The three of us still standing outside.
Nicole still on the phone reasoning with the taxi company.
The argument?

The street we are on does not exist.

My mild headache has now turned brutal.

Dejected and frustrated, we walk back into the theater.
One of the girls says she will give us a ride home as soon as the show is over.

Time: Midnight
Hours of Recital: 3 loooong hours
Moods: Spiraling down--fast.

After one more belly dance routine, I completely lose it.

Maturity and walking in the Spirit have been thrown out the window.
I am now very raw and very annoyed sitting in Real Space.

My very sweet roommates text me to say they were going to bed and to see where I was, I responded with by saying:
Dance recital hell.

As I said--we unraveled completely.

After two more hours of dancing and award handing out the recital officially ended.

We got a ride back to the center.
I walked Lea Anne home and called a taxi to take me the extra 10 minutes to my house.
I was unwilling to exert any energy walking or fight off any creepos at 2 am.

I fell into bed vowing that if I ever have children and one of them happens to be a girl--I am not signing her up for dance.
An hour long volleyball game--fine.
A two hour piano recital--lovely.

Four hours of (sub par) dancing is unacceptable.
And I do not want my children exposed to any belly dancing or Eduardos until they are 21.

In Related News:

The dancing craze has swept our team.
While at our debrief on the island of Ischia, we managed to get an impromptu celebration of St. John the Baptist day.
Dancing by the pool to live music is by far my favorite way to work of an Italian dinner.

The keyboardist was not used to so many Americane at his shows, so he tried to infuse some American music for us.
When he couldn't remember the words to "I will survive" Nicole decided to help him out.

And when the slow songs started, Emily was Lorenzo's first pick of dance partner.
This is one of my favorite moments of the entire year.

Monday, June 16, 2008

My Fake Birthday

Growing up, a summer birthday was awesome.
Pool party every year. Water balloon games. Diving board competitions.
When I was little, cake and chlorine were the best combo I could think of.

Unfortunately, as you get older, summer birthdays just aren't that cool.
Everyone is gone. Everyone is doing their own thing.

For the past two years, I have lived in Italy and never been able to celebrate my birthday with the people that I have spent the entire year with.
The silly calendar never seems to cooperate.
So, my wonderful roommates took matters into their own hands.

We had a fabulous weekend trip to celebrate my never-while-I'm-in-Italy birthday.
Aren't they great?

We rented a car and drove to Pisa for shopping and to Viareggio for beach time.
The perfect girls' trip.

Not only did I get to do two of my favorite things on my "birthday": shop and take a nap in the sun, but I also got to navigate the Italian roads. Which in a terrifying sort of way is totally invigorating. Emily's stick-shift abilities are top notch, and the Clio stuck with us through thick and thin.

Thank you roommates for making me feel special!
So far, fake 25 is feeling pretty good.

Friday, June 06, 2008

I'm a professional.

Bridesmaid, that is.
Oh yes.
I am very good.
I have perfected the walking-while-holding-flowers-and-smiling role.
It's a gift, really.

Engagements and Weddings are the theme of my days lately.
Not my own (obviously), but it is the "big news" in many of friends' lives.

My weekend in Oklahoma/Dallas was no exception.
Of course I went knowing that my little Ashley was getting married.
Duh. It was in the plans for awhile.

I love getting to be a part of this season in my friends' lives.
It was so fun to be there for Ashley and get to see some of the preparations.
Like picking out a rehersal dinner dress.

This one was NOT a winner.

Ashely is such a good friend.
We met in 5th grade and she was my saving grace when I changed schools to go to Liberty.
We made up dance routines in my pool to the soundtrack of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
We also had matching pajamas with the words, "Great Scots!" on them followed by two Scottie dogs.
I wore those plaid boxer shorts well into high school.

She was my accountability partner in high school, and always the friend that was just "got me."
So, naturally a transatlantic flight was no big deal to get to be there for her and Kenton.

I also got to spend some great time with another sweet friend, aka the Maid of Honor.
Juliana giggles with me and asks me how I am really doing.
This whirlwind of a trip should have been draining, but she made it so refreshing.

And just to keep the theme going....Claire got engaged the same weekend!!
I am so happy for my bunkmate and Joe. I am mostly happy that he surprised the doo-doo out of her.

My next supporting actress role as bridesmaid extraordinaire will be on August 2nd at the wedding of my pink-loving Amanda.
Amanda is potentially the sweetest person I have ever known.
She has walked with me through happy times and terrible times and remained so loving and gracious.
I have been so blessed by so many good friends being a part of my life.
Can't wait to celebrate the way the Lord has blessed her with Kyle!

Yay for crazy weekends and weddings!

Kenton and Ashley--you are so sweet to include me in your big day. I loved being there, laughing with you two, and getting to see the goodness of God in your relationship.

Amanda and Kyle--my future Dallas friends! So, so excited to see you guys and hang out and be a part of the beginning of a whole new journey.

Joe and Claire--November 22nd!! I will rock-climb, go barefoot, and be granola for you two because I love you THAT much.