Thursday, November 13, 2008

My South European Adventure

I'll give you just a small synopsis. I'll try to remember as much as possible!

Trip 1: Barcelona
We arrived in the chilly airport about an hour outside of Barcelona. When we actually got to Barcelona we had a little walk to our hostel, but we got there. We stayed in a grody hostel that mom would have LOVED in a room that had about 14 beds and all were occupied... co-ed. Yuck. The showers STANK. But enough about that. We took our own little tours of the city and saw Goudi structures (a famous Spainish architect) we saw a house, a church, and another house by him. We tried to see a house at the top of a hill to see the whole city but it ended up MONSOONING on our walk to the bus. So much so that we had to stop and eat lunch at a delicious little Italian place. One day when it was nicer we went to the beach and stuck our feet in the Atlantic and felt home. We also went to the Picasso museum which was really cool. It had all his early stuff from when he was like 17 and it was CRAZY good. Little doodles from class were like masterpieces. A lot of his cubism stuff wasn't there but his later stuff where he went kinda crazy was and that was weird. It was cool to see the progression from basically Impressionism to his own crazy style.

Trip 2: Salamanca
We flew into Madrid and took a 2 hour train to Salamanca. Once arriving to our hostel (29359 times better than the Barcelona one- a quaint little 10 room place that was very quiet and in a prime place!!) we changed quickly and Mary Elizabeth met us and took us out! We went to a bar that is very popular on Monday nights because it holds.... A BEERPONG TOURNAMENT. That's right. Mary and I partnered up. Defeated our first opponents and loosing our second game. We got a lot of respect from the crowd though. We fumbled through the next day after a long night but toured around the small city and had Spainish food and waited for Mary to get out of her classes. She then let us use her washer (a necessity since we all only brought carry-ons under 10kg for a 10 day trip) and had cheese and crackers in her room then went to dinner. The next day we toured the Cathedral of Salamanca which was beautiful and walked around more and got lost and then found. That was the day we found out our new President- crazy. We went out again to a bar that had 4EURO OPEN BAR. In Paris you can't even get a beer for that much. Then we returned to the first place of Monday night and sang karaoke (my favorite). The song was not a usual karaoke song but it will go down in history- It's All Coming Back to Me Now-Celine Dion. Let's just say we were applauded afterwards. It's a night I'll always remember.

Trip 3: Porto, Portugal
Woke up early to catch a train to the plane to go to Porto. Got to our hostel which was somewhere in the middle of the other two: it smelled of gutted pumpkins, had two pictures in the room- one of a face of a cherub and another of Slyvester and Tweety partaking in shinanigins, 2 beds, and colder than the outside temperature. We relaxed a lot in Porto since we didn't know the language at all. We did a lot of walking around and picture taking. One day we went to the beach and laid on it cuddling close because it was pretty chilly. Kealan almost got hit by a bus but we try to forget that (she thought it was a one way street and didn't look left). We went on a boat tour down the river and also a wine tasting and tour. We tried the Port of Porto and it was very sweet and strong. The weather was not good not bad and chilly for the most part but at least it wasn't raining!!

I finally returned to Paris and I'm so happy to be back. The weather is beautiful in autumn and I'm so glad everyday I chose to study here and no where else.

Today I'm going to London to meet my friends Kristen and Steph, who are studying there, and also Mary Elizabeth will be meeting us there too! It's going to be so much fun and I'm excited to go to a bunch of museums and see the changing of the guards and so on.

I miss you alllllll. A lot. I can't wait for Sten and Veronica to come in one week!!! It'll be so nice to have family for Thanksgiving. You guys aren't allowed to have fun without us. Give Bandit and Buster a hug and kiss for me because I miss them horribly too. Also give a whistle to Spike! I love you all and I can't wait for Christmas!