A Travellerspoint blog

Hace un ano...

One year ago...

It's been almost a year since I was getting ready to set off on one of the most beautiful, amazing journeys of my life.
Hard to believe.

This blog was never really "wrapped up," so I felt a need to write one last entry... It's like, I fell in love with Spain, and now it's no longer in my life... I need some closure! Every time I think back on this wonderful experience, I get little aches in my body.

I think back to those first days in Madrid.. how nervous, anxious and excited I felt, how it all started, and how it would grow into something I could never imagine.
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It was adventure, my wildest dreams, eating those damn sandwiches in Madrid, 7E4920132219AC68173147E2CECE9A9D.jpg pintxos, DSCN4668.jpg 541636_101..138892600_n.jpg croquetas, calimoxtos, sangria, DSCN4655.jpg Choch!, 407750_101..69128_n.jpg sidraaaaa, 430605_679..81341_n.jpg cafe con baileys, 7E5FD1402219AC6817FAA9ADA3FEED23.jpg spanish class with Eli, 550722_390..885008150_n.jpg clase de conversacion with Inaki, birthdays, DSCN4725.jpg DSCN5086.jpg teaching at Mundaiz, P5091342.jpg 7E904C502219AC6817E215058DA08C82.jpg"por que no?", "no pasa nada", super amarra, 392008_288..323511357_n.jpg roomies, 7EFD9ADF2219AC6817ED009336A1A6E6.jpg DSCN5037.jpg la calle fuenterrabia, DSCN4393.jpg basque culture, "agurrrr", crazy/wild nights DSCN5074.jpg DSCN4999.jpg 574442_101..16135_n__1_.jpg 427044_251..815585511_n.jpg at Buga, Molly Malone's, Espala, tas tas, Bataplan, getting kicked out of Bataplan, new found sushi love, 7EFBF1F92219AC6817F190C6172934D8.jpg KEBABS, DSCN4755.jpg visiting the creperia, skinny dipping in the ocean, surf class, 525010_406..230171517_n.jpg SURFING, love&friendship, DSCN5107.jpg 418383_101..915491258_n.jpg 419341_101..639271257_n.jpg wandering, strangers, meeting new people, 422494_101..638063199_n.jpg 397829_101..278428080_n.jpg new friends, 535103_289..079379822_n.jpg 542960_289..276505953_n.jpg DSCN4616.jpg 418836_301..254418986_n.jpg 403824_101..577090878_n.jpg 398750_259..032213898_n.jpg 484851_101..52938_n.jpg 423426_101..69617_n.jpg being Charlie's Angels, DSCN4729.jpg eating and drinking, drinking and eating, awe and wonder, unreal, amazement, el peine del viento, IMG_2631.jpg the jesus statue, ocean, 562234_351..515523200_n.jpg beach time, 429715_101..965984956_n.jpg wine+beach=bangs, barefoot running, absinthe, talking to las brujas, TRAVEL seeing new places, ireland, 421194_101..15502_n.jpg france, DSCF1395.jpg DSCF1457.jpg portugal, DSCN4963.jpg DSCF1133.jpg morocco, 549312_101..719394393_n.jpg 74721_1015..363234717_n.jpg DSCF1624.jpg traveling with my mom, DSCN4990.jpgDSCF1292.jpg shots! 559713_101..4_7703868_n.jpg chupitos!, music, a se tu pego, vamos a la playa, sean paul, "wake up in the morning and I step outside, I take a deep breath, and I get real high", sexy& I know it, Happy Hostel, Maggies B&B, walking along the beach to school, 7EFA086D2219AC6817708DE52439D454.jpg 8100329C2219AC681739C8E7E93E8C20.jpg walking in the rain, DSCN5015.jpg shopping, zara, H&M, blanco, bershka, nutella, cooking, DSCN4422.jpg USAC love, DSCN4997.jpg579832_101..050601465_n.jpg 395668_289..866983262_n.jpg Spain, DSCN4269.jpg DSCN4448.jpg DSCN4491.jpg DSCN4484.jpg 430834_101..31485_n.jpg DSCN4545.jpg el dia de San Sebastian, IMG_0714.jpg Carnavales, 7E5F25862219AC681710F5E59FCC0634.jpg San Sebastian, San Sebby <3 542635_327..881066313_n.jpg 409100_264..027355168_n.jpg

Words and pictures hardly sum it up without the experience and feeling. San Sebastian seems like such a dream to me, it was so magical. The people I met, and memories we made-- unforgettable. What a beautiful city, and what a wonderous time I had there. Thank you San Sebby for all you had to offer!

Posted by SierraRose 14:41 Comments (1)

Burgos Excursion

Home to El Camino de Santiago and the oldest human remains

Famous for....
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Standing on El Camino de Santiago
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Visiting a site right outside of Burgos where the oldest human remains have been found!
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Posted by SierraRose 09:13 Archived in Spain Comments (0)

Marhaba men Mozarabia!

Hello from Morocco!

I know it's a bit late-- but I have a couple more entries to finally finish my blog.. a year since I first began my travels! Here are some photos from our last trip we took in May to Tangier, Morocco.

FOOD
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I <3 olives...
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Eating camel cheese, drinking camel milk
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Maggie's B&B-- best place to stay!
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Miscellaneous..
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Morocco was an absolute dream. It was one of my favorite trips because it was something so different from everything else I'd experienced. When we first arrived, we were met at the airport my our tour guide we set up through SAID tours. Muhammad showed us around the markets. We were led through a tour of the Moroccan caves and rode camels!

We stayed with a woman named Maggie, who used her home as a B&B. She was quite a character, and I would totally stay there again! She's Scottish, but she grew up in India, traveled in France, the U.S. and other various places, until she ended up in Morocco. Her house was this amazing little place hidden in a maze of Moroccan apartments in the Medina, or the old part of town. She had a terrace which looked over the city and the ocean. There was also a bedroom up there too-- so cool. Her housekeeper, Fatima, made us a delicious breakfast every morning while we listened to Maggie's 1920's music fill the air. She had two old friends staying with her, one man from Spain, and the other from England. We were convinced her and the English guy were in love, secretly. Because of religion, the nightlife isn't huge, but Maggie suggested a bar at the Tangier Inn, where apparently Jack Kerouac used to hang out. We had a great, low key night there and met some really kind people.

The food was amazing, and the reason for my new olive obsession. Maggie suggested we visit this place near the port where all the workers eat. There are these little whole in the wall seafood places, and they are a delicious bargain. For 8 euro, four of us shared a meal-- a plate of fried calamari, fried shrimp (still with the shell on and all), and then a plate of fish.. SO GOOD! Morocco is also famous for their mint tea, for obvious reasons-- it is to die for.

I could spend a lifetime shopping at the markets in Morocco... Everything was so colorful! Beautiful jewelry, leather, furniture, pottery... The pharmacy had a neat array of items, from saffron lip balm to rubs for cooking meat. The food markets are absolutely incredible. Everything is fresh, colorful and vibrant. The olives... I'm tellin' ya. A-MA-ZING. The meat market was a little scary-- they don't waste any part of the animal, which is great, but the smell is horrendous.

Overall this trip was amazing-- short but sweet. And although we didn't find a place in time to get henna done, it was still one of my favorite trips-- I was even inspired to take an Arabic class this semester! Can't wait to return one day.

Posted by SierraRose 09:05 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Disfrutando de las Ultimas Semanas

"Enjoying the Final Weeks": Sidra, Jenga, Surfing and USAC love!

Our time here is winding down, and I honestly can't bear thinking about it. The good thing is we still have lots to look forward to in the final weeks.. The weather is supposed to be getting warmer, next weekend we go to Burgos, and then Morroco! Yes, the weather hasn't been too great. We were teased with perfect 75 and sunny days before spring break, and we returned home to rainy gloom! Keeping my fingers crossed for the 70 and sunny forecast on Wednesday.

However, we have been living it up, rainy weather or not, we're making the best of it! Still having fun baking and cooking.. the latest culinary endeavors have consisted of Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Brownies, Spinach, Artichoke, and Goat Cheese Strata, and of course more chocolate chip banana bread.

Speaking of food, we made yet another trip to the sidraria, Zelaia in Hernani. At 30 euro a trip, I told myself I'd only go to the sidraria once.. Here I am, round 3!
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Appetizer, sausage and bread. Bread is pretty much a given at any point in time at the sidraria.. pretty much unlimited pan
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First dish, cod omelet with green peppers
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Second dish, cod, green peppers, and fried onions
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Third dish, Chuleta.. yummmmy steak
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And of course, dessert, walnuts, cheese, jelly, and cookies
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Lauren gettin some sidra!
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Our table
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And then there was this guy....

What else have we been doing with our time? We've just been having a damn good time! It's getting hard to think about school (as it is anywhere this time of year), and easier to go out and bond with our fellow USACers. And of course practice our Spanish with locals at the bars :)
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We started having get togethers at our apartment, which has been so much fun!!!
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It usually consists of Jenga, and people wearing strange sparkly masks...
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...the boys eating all my food
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...Austin (Megan's friend visiting from London) throwing out the Blue Steel
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...These chicas being the best dressed for the beach theme
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...and of course, what would a get together at the Cathedral be without roomie love? :)

Probably the best part of these past few weeks is that we've started our surfing class! Thank god for wet suits, it's been freezing, but it's been awesome. I mean, I'm not the most skilled on a surf board, but I am trying! And I LOVE the class. It's a crazy good workout, and I just am in heaven when I am out swimming in the ocean. It's sort of confirmed the fact that I HAVE to live by the ocean (but preferably a warmer one....) I'm thinkin Hawaii or Costa Rica.
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After walking home from surf class in the rain.. we got lots of strange looks
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Anyway, as much as I am missing some of my amazing friends and family back home, it's so hard to think we don't have that much time left. San Sebastian is such an incredible place, and I cannot imagine leaving it! Gotta live up these final weeks!!!

"They say I'll never have it so good..."

Posted by SierraRose 07:25 Comments (0)

Adventures of madre and me

Two weeks after St. Patrick's, Mom arrived.. well in Paris. So we had a little scheduling issue.. We planned our first day of adventures on the day of a country-wide strike in Spain. Mom's flight was supposed to connect in Paris and take her to Bilbao, but she got stuck in Paris, and me stuck at the Holiday Inn in Bilbao. After a stressful day of trying to change her tickets and communicate with no phones, we worked it out so that we met in Madrid the next day. What a relief it was when we finally saw eachother!
From Madrid, we made our way to Lisbon, Portugal. Our stay was perfect, just the right amount of time, not to rushed, and not too long (can vacation ever be too long?) However, 5 out of our 6 nights were spent in hostals right above bars (a jazz club, and then an Irish pub). But I mean.. I can't complain, we were in Portugal. We started out a few days in Lisbon. We explored the city, which included a trip to the Gulbekian museum (hope I am spelling that right) and the castle of Sao Jorge/Saint George.
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There was somewhat of a parade going on while we were there...
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a piece in the Gulbekian
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Dinner
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and dessert!
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We took a 40 minute train to Sintra, a beautiful, and most definitely, tourist spot. There was lots to see, but we spent most of our time exploring the streets on our own. We did try to hike up to this amazing Moorish castle which was WAYYY high up on a hill top. When we started, we knew the castle gates had already closed, so we just enjoyed the beautiful, mystical, magical hike on the way up.
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And the walk through the fairy forest...
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The next few days we spent in Cascais, a town right on the coast. I think this stay was the most relaxing. We toured the town by bike, did some shopping and site seeing, and spent some time just hanging out on the beach.
Residential Parsi
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Boca del Infierno
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An outdoor gym.. I would totally use one of these!
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We spent our last night back in Lisbon, where we saw more sites and picked up some souvegneirs (don't know how to spell souveiners..) Our hostal was awesome on this night. They made us dinner for a small price, and we enjoyed a traditional Portuguese meal with other travelers. And finally, we weren't sleeping above a music blasting bar! We got some sleep before we headed back to San Sebastian.
Monument of the Discoveries
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Monastery
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Torre de Belem
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We had a few days in San Sebby before we took off for France. I showed mom some of the city, the beach. We hiked up Mount Urgull and went out to pintxos! We went to Easter Sunday mass at Buen Pastor Cathedral, and then we picked up our rental car and headed north, to the south of France!
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After eating out so much, we decided to do a little home cookin!
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The drive was longer than we anticipated, but absolutely gorgeous. The countryside was sweet and magical. Green lands spotted with yellow mustard fields.. beautiful castles and cathedrals in the center of old charming homes and villages. Later that night we made it to Avignon, where we spent the following day. We lucked out with gorgeous warm weather, and enjoyed wandering inside the walls of the city.
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Pont d'Avignon
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The Pope's Palace
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Gardens near Pope's Palace
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The next day, we drove back and stopped in Arles and Carcassone on the way. Carcassone was a really neat place, somewhere I'd definitely go back to.
Ampitheater in Arles
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Carcassone
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I saw Mom off at the Bilbao airport yesterday... Sad to see her go and realize my spring break was coming to an end! But it was a wonderful way to spend it, and I felt like we got to see alot!

Now for songs of the moment... On our road trip, I got to hear a lot of French music! So I will share some of my favorites:

Des Ricochet -Cool collaboration that is part of a UNICEF project

Elle Me Dit -Catchy song which translates to something about dancing and not wasting life away! Plus the video is really fun

Je L'aime a Mourir/La Quiero a Morir -A beautiful song by Shakira, sung and Spanish and French... Love her!

Posted by SierraRose 03:38 Comments (0)

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