Monday, October 17, 2011

The Barcelona Adventure

What's Spain without Barcelona?? That's a question I found myself asking, and to solve the issue, my room-mate Natalie and I took off on a weekend journey to the city.  Side note, thank you Europe for making flights so cheap!

Adventure doesn't even begin to describe the weekend.  Before we even left M├ílaga we began having issues...  Everyone told us the airport bus was #19.  The only problem was, we couldn't find bus 19.  It was like it didn't exist.  We literally walked/jogged/ran all over downtown before realizing that bus 19 is also known as Bus A.  By the time we board said bus, we were running SO late.  We got to the airport at 715... Our flight was scheduled to take off at 740.  We busted out of the bus and sprinted across the parking lot.... to the wrong terminal.  Finally, we get to our gate and are pleasantly surprised to see that our plane wasn't even half boarded yet.  

So then we finally get to Barcelona and sit at the airport cafe for a short break... where a random male proceeds to ask us if we were traveling alone.  No, we're in a big group actually, we're just gonna go meet the rest of our group now... In defense against any more bad vibes, we proceeded to use fake names all weekend.  I'm now Audrey, btw.  

Around 5 pm we arrived at our hostel.  Yes, hostel.  For those of you who don't know, a hostel is different than a hotel in that you only pay for a bed, not a room.  In ends up being SUPER cheap- staying three nights in total was way less than staying one single night in a hotel.  The catch is, you're in a large room with bunks of random other people.  Generally hostels are popular with people my age because its really easy to meet other traveling people our age, it's a very laid back atmosphere, there are activities, etc.  Personally, I just liked the cheap price.  For 3 nights, I can handle a bunch of other random girls in a room.  It's not ideal, but its interesting for sure.  

Oh, funny story.  Day 2 we decide that it would be a good idea to rent vespas, after all they are super cute.  According to the rental people, it didn't matter that we had never driven a motorcycle or vespa before, in fact, a bicycle was sufficient.   Well well.  Let me just tell you that a bicycle is NOT sufficient experience.  I thought I was going to die (see picture sequence below.)  In fact, when people tell you not to drive in a foreign country, you really should listen to them.  Because what happens to Americans driving vespas in a foreign country?  They end up lost... on the Barcelona freeway.  Yes.  That actually happened to us.  No worries, we returned the vespas early and walked away safe and sound with a new appreciation for life.  

Now that I've rambled on, a short conclusion.  From the markets to the works of Gaudi (the artist who designed the famous church, Sagrada Familia, among other things) Barcelona was definitely a fun visit.  Next week I'll be here in Malaga, but the week after that I'm headed to Paris!

I sincerely regret not going back for the chocolate drink...

First thoughts- Yay!  A cute vespa!

Second thoughts- This isn't so cute anymore.  I don't think I know what I'm doing... oh. my. gosh.  Is that the FREEWAY?!

And finally- I'm too scared to drive back.  What do we do now??

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