Thursday, March 29, 2007

Learning the Language

Things couldn’t be better.

There was a time in my life when I was bored with Magic, bored with video games, bored with writing and didn’t know what to do with myself. Well, those days have passed. I have way too much to do, and not enough time to do it in.

Writing is going well. At Wendy’s urging, I let my hands and consciousness fly when working on the novel. Free writing without correcting or worrying and it became much easier. It started to flow better and become much less painful. I expected it to be garbage, but it came out all right. It’s still not as easy as just reporting and rambling, but it is a lot easier now.

Magic is going pretty much awful. I haven’t made a top 8 online in… months? Writing about it, and the response on the forums when I submit an article is very good though. I’m up to my eleventh article for Star City and it feels great to be writing about Magic again.

Thanks to my loyal readers, I asked for and received directions to Magic shops in Madrid. There’s a very nice one about a three minute walk away. Wendy and I were both amazed it wasn’t a comic/sports/video game/Magic shop like most are in the states. Nope, this one is just a Magic shop. Nothing but cards and tournaments. Clean, well lit, lots of space, colorful, perfect. Haven’t played any games there yet as we haven’t had time. Might go down for Friday night Magic tomorrow if I get my column in though. The language barrier hasn’t been too bad in playing when I faced people from other countries in the pro tour.

Working out has slowed to a crawl. Wendy pulled a muscle in her calf that has kept us from running. I’d like to blame it all on this, but in fact, I haven’t been doing stairs, push ups or Pal Dan gum this week. I know why, but I should make some time for working out.

Learning Spanish is my main goal right now. I have set writing, working out, MMA, Magic and any other goals on the back burner until I know Spanish better. It’s frustrating not knowing what’s going on. Each day I used to do some exercise, do some Magic, work on my column for Star City, work on the novel, and do some lessons on the web at The Rosetta Stone. This week has been play enough Magic so I can write a column, and everything else is Spanish. Taking notes on Spanish phrases, doing lessons and Wendy tutoring me as we walk or wait for our food in cafe’s. Watching Spanish movies with English sub titles. That sort of thing. Once I can communicate in the culture I now live in, I’ll get back to the other stuff.

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