Our first bad day in Salzburg (but spoiler alert: it ended pretty well).

Friday, February 20, 2009

This past Wednesday started out badly.

First off, Sandy fell flat on her back during her morning run.  Salzburg is block of ice right now (but a really pretty block of ice!), so the streets are icy and slick.  That element, combined with the cobblestone streets....let's just say it was a recipe for disaster.

During Sandy's run, I was in German class.  My German teacher likes to spontaneously ask me to say things in Spanish, which is very hard for me to do when my brain is set in 'German' mode, and it sometimes takes me a minute to switch gears.  That morning, Frau Eva asked me a basic question in Spanish and I somehow answered it in French (????).  Mind you, I've taken one French class and hated it.  It's not my language.  But it was embarrassing and Frau Eva wasn't amused.  In fact, she seemed annoyed, as though she thought I hadn't been paying attention, and it made for an all-around awkward exchange.

But if that weren't bad enough, following that experience, I passed Sandy on my way home from class (and on her way to class).  I noticed she was wearing a cardigan, V-neck tee, jeans, and Keen sandals with no socks.  In the below freezing temperature.  With wet hair, and no coat.  I gave her my gloves but it was the best I could do.  And she was already so far from St. Sebastian that going home would have been a lost cause.  "Today is so not our day", I thought to myself as I walked back to St. Sebastian with Kayla.

An hour after Kayla and I had lunch together, I had an appointment in Ingrid's office, where I would enroll in the courses for the upcoming semester (it starts Monday!).  I had only been to Ingrid's office once before and that was last week with the rest of the group.  Being as directionally challenged as I am, I asked Kayla for directions, which she happily gave me.  But my general unawareness of my surroundings combined with the fact that Kayla accidentally told me to take a 'right' instead of a 'left' out of the St. Sebastian side gate, and, well -- let's just say I ended up nowhere near Ingrid's office.  I wondered around for 15 minutes, frustrated and confused.  To make matters worse, during this 15-minute window, Salzburg was hit by what I like to call "Slushfest 2009", which consisted of snowy rain and crazy winds.

I ended up turning around and walking back to St. Sebastian looking like a drowned rat.  Or rather, a drowned and defeated rat.  When I walked into Kayla's room, my hair was soaking wet and you could have wrung out my clothes.  Thankfully, when I emailed Ingrid to apologize for missing my appointment, she responded immediately and told me not to worry about it, but to come the next day instead (which I did, successfully, and got enrolled for the semester!).

The rest of the day was so much better; I sat in the laundry room windowsill at St. Sebastian and did my homework while Kayla washed and dried her clothes.  It sounds mundane but it was, weirdly enough, one of my favorite afternoons yet.  At that point, the slush had turned to powdery snow and as I watched it fall, I thought for the 1,000th time how crazy it is that we get to live here.  The coziness of that moment along with Kayla's company made for a very pleasant turn of events.  Plus, I  got to assist Kayla with the translation of all the washing machine/dryer settings, which added an educational element to the day, so that's always nice.

I stayed there until 5:00, when Sandy came home from class and we realized that we were wearing the same headband yet again.  We celebrated this happy coincidence by taking the following photo and then breaking into the jar of Nutella she'd just brought back from the store.

And that's how you turn a bad day into a good one.

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