Saturday, August 14, 2010

A puzzling week

As you all know, I spent about a week at Hotel Amanda Country Home alone. Joseba is back now (yay!) but in the meantime, between my bike rides and beach trips, I needed to find some thing to occupy my time. My solution was a 1,000 piece puzzle!

Growing up and even still when I am home, Grammy and I do puzzles for fun. From 200 pieces when I was kid to the 1,500 piece one we did once, I have developed quite a fondness of puzzles
and decided to find a difficult one to pass the time here in the countryside. I found a small puzzle store in the Old Part of San Sebastian and took a gander one day, hoping to find a puzzle that I just HAD to do, and I found it! Very common in the Basque Country are flower boxes overflowing with geraniums, which add splashes of color everywhere you look. At Joseba's, the family living below him, has decorated a bright green storage door by surrounding it with a variety of potted plants, some of which are the token blooms. When I walked into the puzzle store, I saw a similar Spanish scene of an entry way from a home somewhere in Andalucia - a region in Southern Spain. Although different colors
and building materials, I was taken aback from the similarity between the two flower power spots, on different sides of the country (I know, I know, it's kind of a stretch but I saw some similarities. If you don't see it, here is another picture of a different Basque balcony scene, so maybe you can get more of the idea I thought when I spotted this puzzle - flowers everywhere!). Looking at the photos now, I see it's not exactly a spot-on match, but I bought it anyways and started it immediatley, to quickly find out it was pretty hard.

Not only did I buy the puzzle for the scene, but also because I thought a huge yellow column and a white wall full of flower pots with similar pink flowers would be quite a challenge. Let me
tell you, it was. A week later, I finally finished it! And the satisfaction of putting that last piece in was great (kind of a geeky thing to say, I know)!

Inside the box, the company has written this: Doing a puzzle is a bit like doing yoga exercises...a very welcome relaxation from your daily routine. It is a labor of love, challenge and a light relief all in one. Doing puzzles is exciting, with invigorating emotional ups and downs. Piece for piece, as you search, find and search again, your feeling of acheivement grows. One person can work on a puzzle - or a whole group. Why don't you make your next party a puzzle one??

Now, I like puzzles but I don't know if I would describe it as having invigorating emotional ups and downs, but it sure was fun. Funny thing, is that after all the thinking I put into finding a somewhat similar entryway scene for the puzzle, Joseba asked me why I didn't just do the puzzle that he already had at the house?! I didn't know! Regardless, I'm happy I tackled it. My brain feels younger already. However, I can imagine we will probably do the other puzzle sometime in the near future! I guess you could say we will do as the puzzle box suggests and have a puzzle party haha!


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