Rota, Spain April 20-26

I had a more business than pleasure trip recently to the beautiful country of Spain. More specifically, to the naval base there in Rota. It’s different than Italy, in that the base is actually shared. The U.S. is allowed to be on the Spanish Navy base so it’s not very American. They split the base mostly in half and all of it is beautiful. This is the first time I’ve been to a military base where the area right outside the gate is ALSO beautiful! Believe me that’s unique.

I spent 5 days in a Lean Six Sigma class to become a green belt. Sound like a foreign language? Yeah, it did to me too. It’s basically a problem solving methodology to either reduce waste or perfect a process. My problem solving tool box has grown exponentially since taking this class, although I must say a lot of it is common sense. Sometimes you just have to be reminded that even if something’s being done the way it’s always been done, it may be time to look at it in a different way.. .

I flew in on a Sunday, had dinner with my new friend (a civilian nurse from the hospital I had never met before) and from then on spent every night dining out with some of the wonderful people in class with me until we left the following Saturday. It was a ton of fun and we got to see some of the very attractive aspects of living in Rota. Future duty station? I’d be lying if I didn’t say it wasn’t on my mind…

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the little puddle jumper plane we took from madrid to jerez. jerez was about 30 minutes from rota. smallest plane i’ve had to take in a while!…

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points for the Navy Lodge room being pretty nice. I slept very well in that bed all week. I’m sure it had nothing to do with the fact that two pugs weren’t snuggling with me…

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my sitting room. i was feeling a bit spoiled.

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dinner after our first day of class. it was the best food i had all week!

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my wonderful friend Alaina. We worked together on the mother-baby ward in Portsmouth, VA. Her adorable daughter was enjoying some cartoons.

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best chicken kebab. and yes the sangria was delicious!

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on Wednesday our instructor allowed us to have a long lunch and go to the “gypsy market” it was a lot like the street markets in Italy.

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feria dresses are very popular at the markets

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i REALLY wanted one… but i didn’t get it. I wasn’t sure how i’d get it home…

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LIVE snail… I took a video that’s hard for me to watch

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i haven’t had a pedicure in a year and a half. although it wasn’t the best one i’ve ever had, it was still heavenly!

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me and my new friend amanda enjoying the spa day

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i was impressed with the beautiful flowers just growing right outside their NEX

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dinner at an irish pub on one of the nights

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you can tell you’re in europe when the futbol game comes on and the bar is instantly crowded with fans

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i did visit the hospital which was smaller than i espected. this wall of births i thought was pretty adorable

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out to lunch with the class group. they were such sweet people i felt very lucky that everyone got along

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this was their venue for their Nurse Corps dinner. I was pretty jealous.

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and then we went to their gorgeous beach. nice sand and not a cigarette to be found… must be nice!

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on our way to dinner. there are wild horses just hanging out everywhere!

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the sunset view from our table at dinner. just gorgeous

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feral cats everywhere as well. this one is not so much different from Naples

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such a fun filled week. i wss very happy to come home to my familia though. they’re just too cute. i’d be happy to go to another class in Rota anytime!!

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