I’m so Euro…sort of

Matt eating street food in Belgium.

I am so Euro in some respects, but then again, I am definitely not in others. There is one part of Europe that I’m already trying to figure out how to bring back with me and others I’ll gladly forget.

For instance, Euro fashion, not for me. Then again, I’m not into fashion period so it doesn’t matter what country it’s coming from, it doesn’t get me going. It’s simply more noticeable here because guys and girls alike both seem to place quite an emphasis on dress, hair, and shoes. And it’s not that it’s super cool Euro styles either, but some stuff that makes me really wonder: I’m thinking about shaved sides of the head with long, wavy, combed over hair, or super tight colorful pants, or old school hightops with lots of neon pink in them, and Italian jumpsuits! It’s fun to watch but not for me.

I’m also not into ham or seafood. All over Madrid we see big legs of ham hanging around. They’re not refrigerated and they still have the hoof on them. In Italy, seafood is everywhere and very little of the food seems to have much in the way of vegetables, even though veggies are all over the markets and super cheap. But thank goodness for Kebab places! They have awesome falafel bocadillos in Madrid and we’ve had one from the same place three days in a row because they’re cheap and absolutely wonderful.

After time in Guatemala and now a few weeks in Europe, I must admit I do pay a little more attention to soccer matches (futbol) than before. I will even turn on the television tonight to watch the Madrid vs. Barcelona match. However, it’ll take something special for it to move very high on my sports list once we get back home since soccer isn’t all that big in the States.

But the kicker, bigger than falafel and way bigger than futbol, that I can’t believe I really like, are the bidets. We have one in each of our bathrooms in Italy but they look more like they’re for ornament than for function. But yesterday, after a lot of running and walking, I was feeling a little chafed and a little dirty yet I did not feel like taking a shower. Our bidet had one of those freshly cleaned wrappers over it and I thought, why not? I lowered my pants and squatted over the bidet. I turned the water on but cranked it up way too quickly and managed to spray water out between my legs and all over my jeans. But I persisted. It was a clean bidet and I sat right down on it. I then turned the water up slowly and once I was sure I had it lined up right and the water was heating up, I cranked it up and cleaned the backdoor. It was so refreshing! There was a fresh towel next to the bidet to dry off and some soap to wash my hands when finished. A marvelous experience and one I repeated this morning. I’m sold and now feel a little more Euro after joining the crowd here for the bidet experience.

So if anyone back home knows where we can rent a place in Seattle with a bidet, please let me know. And there’s no need to worry, we’re definitely excited to come back to the States for some of our favorites (like having it be reasonably cool and easy to be a vegetarian; it’s easier in Ohio than in Madrid!). But if I come back sporting a crazy new hairstyle and wearing tight blue pants, then I may have gone a little too Euro and may need some sort of intervention. But for now, I’m loving the Tour d’ Europe and getting just the right mix of study time and Euro time.

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