Friday, August 31, 2012

Places to visit before I leave

The time is flying, and I won't be in Texas too much longer.  The month of my departure is coming tomorrow and I know the time will fly by.  I've been extremely busy with preparing for the trip, catching up with wonderful friends and rehearsing for the show.  Just so I don't forget anything, I've made a list of places that I would love to re-visit or visit for the first time before I go.

Let's start with food

1)  El Matador - Denton: Having my going away party here.  Nice cheap Tex-Mex and a chilled out atmosphere

2) Babe's - Granbury: I doubt Spain has any good fried chicken so I'll have to get it out of my system.

3) Chipotle - Denton:  We have a new Chipotle right across from campus on the grave of the old Tomato.  Will have to try it out before I go.
4) Crooked Crust - Denton:  I've grown to love this place.  Really cheap tasty pizza.  Can't ask for more.

5) Freebirds - Denton: Having spent lots of time in College Station, I'm addicted to Freebirds.  YUM!!!

6) Pappadeaux - Dallas: Gotta hit up my favorite restaurant ever.  Nothing like it.

7) Pappasito's - Fort Worth: This place has become a family tradition.  Hopefully it'll be my last meal in TX with my family before I leave.

Now to some places I'd like to say goodbye to:

1) Beth Marie's - Denton: I guess this could have gone under "food", but this place is so much more.  It's really one of the biggest symbols of Denton and it embodies all that is good in this lovely town.

2) Bruce Hall - UNT, Denton: My first home in Denton.  I had some great times here, and I certainly made some wonderful friends.

3) Campus Theatre - Denton:  This one will make me bawl.  I'm gonna miss my home-away-from-home and all the people that frequent it. ;(

4) Dallas Arts District - Dallas: The Arts District has several live performance venues as well as museums and a beautiful church.  Gotta see it all one last time.

5) Recycled Books/Opera House - Denton: The coolest book store ever!  Spent many an hour here.
6) The Square - Denton: Beautiful place to spend a summer day.  Nothing else like it.

There are also some places I need to visit that I haven't had the chance to experience yet

1) Brazos Drive-In - Granbury: I've never been to a drive-in.  It's about time.

2) Popo y Lupe - Denton: Always wanted to take a picture at the Popo y Lupe sign.  It's just so tacky!

Well that's all for now.  Just clearing a blockage and making lists.  More pointless lists to follow!

Un beso,
Tyler from TX

Monday, August 13, 2012

Getting antsy

I thought that the wait for placements was complete agony!  Now that I am absolutley certain of where I have been placed and what I will be doing for 8 months, I'm as anxious as ever.  As I posted recently my visa was approved and returned to me.  I also have my plane ticket purchased, and I have even packed my suitcase.  Now these last few weeks have been moving at a snail's pace.  I am fully aware that I will not be in the States much longer, but each day drags on.  That being said, my departure is in clear sight.
Over the last weekend I have had the honor of performing with the company of DCT's Hairspray.  We had three sold-out performances and will most likely continue the lucky streak this coming weekend.  I can't express what a wonderful experience this show has been.  It's great to work with established coleagues as well as new faces.  I did my first show at the Campus Theatre exactly 10 years ago, and it's really what got me hooked on acting.  Before I had only done theatre as a child.  I truly owe my identity as a person to the theatre scene here in Denton and the people who make it so vibrant.  I would not be the same Tyler without this community.  So it's been a bittersweet experience.  I know that after Hairspray I may not ever perform on this stage again, but I have 10 years of life-changing experiences to look back on.
The Campus Theatre in Downtown Denton

  Marquee for our production (Photo by Jessica Cope)

Publicity poster

Interior of the beautiful historic Campus Theatre, my home away from home

The Nicest Kids in Town (all Hairspray photos by Michael C. Foster)

Corny and the fun-loving, free-wheeling Brenda

The Madison

The newest addition to the team

The title number

Look at that beautiful jacket (designed by Marcus Lopez and constructed by Marsha Keffer)

So that's what I've been up to for the last few weeks.  I'm not ready to let go just yet, but I know that this weekend will fly by.  Gotta enjoy it while I can.  Next up is The Most Happy Fella at Lyric Stage.  This company is also near and dear to my heart as I have been doing shows with them for over 5 years.  They really do know how to put on a show with beautiful sets, large casts, skilled directors and an amazing musical director who always presents the shows with 35+ piece orchestras.  I have a feeling that the rehearsal for this show will once again be a very short 4 weeks.  I've gotta enjoy it while it's here.  

So now I just have to survive 19 more days of work, and I'm off!  My life is going to be turned upside down.  I've been at my current place of employment for the last 8 years (yes I had just turned 20), and this is bascially all I know.  Additionally Texas is all I know.  Granted I have been very lucky to travel quite a bit, but I have always lived in Texas.  I've been in Denton for 11 years now, and it's definitely my home.  Looking forward to this move to Palma, but it's definitely going to uproot my whole life.  I'm not complaining, mind you.  I'm just fully aware that my life as I know it will never exist again.  It's such a hard thing to grasp, but I'm sure I'll be ready for a change come the 26th of September.

Now for Spain!!!  I've obviously been doing more research on my living options and the surrounding areas over the past few weeks.  Could I be any luckier?  Mallorca is a beautiful island that has both beautiful landscapes and modern living side by side.  While researching Palma I found an attraction that I must visit.  Las Cuevas del drach (The Caves of the Dragon) have me so intrigued.  The caves are home to an underground lake that is simply otherwordly.  Musicians ride through the lake underground and play mini-concerts throughout the day.  How weird and fun!  I can't wait!

Las cuevas del drach

Also I think I will be in Spain for the premieres of two highly-anticipated moves: Pedro Almodóvar's Los amantes pasajeros and Paco Plaza's [REC]4 Apocalipsis.  Being a film nut I couldn't be happier to see these films in their country of origin.  YAY!  Well, now I guess I'm just spinning my wheels, but I felt like I had to write something to document the long wait.  Hopefully the 26th of September will be here before I know it. :)

Un beso,
Tyler from Texas

Friday, August 3, 2012

Got my visa today!

Just got a text from my mother that said I received my visa in the mail!  As you may have read earlier, I applied for my visa in Houston on July 9, and it took 3.5 weeks to be delivered in the mail.  So there it is!  It's official.  I've got 30 days of work left (well actually less considering Labor Day and the vacation time I need to use) and 55 days until I start my adventure.  There's not really much more to report other than I'm extremely happy that this has all been a (fairly) smooth process.  Still feeling so lucky to have this opportunity.  Again big thanks to all my Expat Cafe and Facebook friends for all the advice.  It's really paid off.  Well I guess that's all for now.  Just had to put the information out there for my own sake. :)
Un petó,
Tyler from Texas