Wednesday, May 02, 2007


The thing that brought us to Barcelona—Andrew’s MBA—has, unbelievably, come to an end. This weekend was graduation, and Andrew processed with his classmates to receive his diploma, applauded by me, his parents and sister, and a family friend. It was such a huge life decision for Andrew to make—whether to do the MBA, and where to do it—and it has all been such a great success. The next chapters are going to be very exciting.

Graduation was a very nice affair, with families there from all over the world. Now many of Andrew’s friends have left the city, on their way to other places to begin their post-MBA lives. We’re still here, for now, and in no way ready to leave. We had a lovely few days with Andrew’s family, even fitting in a concert at the amazing Palau de la Musica Catalana, one of the most ornate Modernista structures in Barcelona, which had been on our “to do before leaving” list. We sent back three enormous bags of stuff with his family, feeling sad to make even this gesture—a minor one, to be sure, of winter clothes and already-read books—towards departure. We have only a slim idea of where in the world, or when, we’ll see these bags again.

On Monday, I explored still another new place in Barcelona: the inside of a bridal salon. I’ve been drooling over the dresses in the window of the amazing Spanish store Pronovias since I moved to Barcelona—and my engagement ring finally gave me my golden (white-golden) entry ticket. Andrew called and made an appointment for me last week; and on Monday afternoon, I was buzzed into the shop with Andrew’s mother, sister, and family friend.

The night before, I’d looked up some wedding dress vocabulary words—sleeves, lace, straps, strapless, wedding date. And indeed, the entire encounter was in Spanish. I looked through the heavy books of dresses and chose the ones I wanted to try on; and as I tried each on, I explained to the girl helping me what I did and did not like. Fortunately, dress-talk lends itself quite nicely to mime; but I did, surprisingly, fare quite well with the Spanish and found a (very, very expensive) dress that I loved. I have the dress’s name written on a little Pronovias card, with the store’s phone number. Call me, the “Eco” suggests. I want to see you again.

In any case, once again it appears that I actually have learned some Spanish. No matter where we are next, I need to keep it up.

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