Happy Moanday: I Viajar to Espana!

Well, the countdown has finally begun in earnest! In less than a week, I will be wandering around sunny Barcelona with my puppy, looking terribly American and forgetting my 8 years of Spanish classes (lo siento, Hermana Josefine!). It is exciting and wonderful and I am so thrilled that I'm half-worried I'll be completely worn out by Sunday, like a little kid who stays awake the week before her birthday and ends up sleeping through the whole thing. Dave has been happily tromping along on the Camino, not getting trampled by bulls in Pamplona, and product-testing my blog with European browsers (hi kiddo!).

Our plan is a few days in Barcelona and San Sebastien and a few days in the mountains, in a tiny 300-person village. Since I am a bit anxious about what we're going to be eating, I've starting reading Penelope Casa's The Foods and Wines of Spain, which presents a whole number of Spanish recipes, from tapas to sopas to carne (appetizers, soups, meats). My plan is to also find a Spanish grandma and ask her what we should eat (taking copious notes/pictures, of course), and with any luck be adopted and stuffed fully.

What I think is a little strange is how excited I am to eat. This is incredible to me, since a lot of my trips to foreign countries have been filled with anxiety over not having access to Cheerios or Mac n Cheese. While there are still some places on the planet where I think I would get skinny quick (ever tried 100-year-old egg?), I'm finally shaking free of my picky eating habits and feeling more willing to embrace the unusual (of course, I'm also traveling to a country where bacon is an art form, cheese is a part of every meal, and veggies are almost unheard of). I'm excited to go shopping and hopefully learn culinary skills from the people we meet and sample regional fare. My dream: fresh paella when we visit Tarragona on the Mediterranean, goat cheese from the goats wandering in the mountains, olive oil from the arid eastern coast... How much of this can I fit in my suitcase?

So while I dream of delicious food and steadily check off everything I need, I still need to feed myself! I'm not traveling this weekend (unless, you know, you count going to Spain), so I should be busily cooking. I may test out some of my Spanish recipes, but I'm thinking I might hold off until I can get my hands on the real thing. My throat has been bothering me for a few days, so I may put together my Boo-Hoo Flu Soup, or something equally soothing. My mom told me about a recipe that sounds lovely and delicious--a mousse made with Cool Whip and strawberry yogurt--and so I might also keep this week to simple and delicious. Of course, I looooved my pizza from last week (it gets a post soon!), and if my brother stops by this weekend, I may make it for us.

The blog will likely be on hiatus until I return in August, as presumably I will be spending Internet cafe time telling friends and family I am alive and well, rather than updating Res-o-puh-leese. So, dear readers, enjoy this week and I will Happy Moanday up a storm in a few weeks!

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