“The world is a book. Those who do not travel read only a page.” –St. Augustine
My grandma sent me this quote in an e-mail. I started to get a little teary eyed on my plane ride home from Barcelona last weekend. I could not believe my last trip while abroad was over and how much I had seen the last few months. My weekend adventures of “seeing the world” were coming to an end. I have read a lot more than just one page in the book and cannot wait for the day I’ll be able to read more.
I’m not going to lie though, another reason I became emotional was because Barcelona was one HUGE fiesta! And I did not want to leave, it was my favorite trip. Emily, my roommate, and I traveled just the two of us. We stayed in Kabul Hostel the first three nights. The hostel was CRAZY. I would highly recommend it to any students traveling to Barcelona. Plus, the location is excellent, right off Les Ramblas. In our 10 person co-ed room we had two American girls (us), one Bermudan, two cute, younger German boys, two French girls, and four very good looking Australians! (Let’s just say we weren’t upset about the hot Australians.) I thought I would be annoyed living with so many people, but we absolutely loved it! Everyone in our room got along great. We hung out together and quickly became a little “family”. One night we even held a little party for everyone in the hostel. I have never been in a room with so many foreign people at once. The languages were flying all over the place! There was a lot to talk about because we met people who lived in the places we had traveled to, including Paris, Italy, and even Lancaster! Emily and I also became friends with most the staff, who are all young and energetic. We were late checking out and usually that means you do not get your 15 euro deposit back (which at this point in studying abroad and one is broke this seems like a huge deal). However, they told us if we sang a song for them they would forgo the rule. So, there Emily and I were, for 15 euro, singing “La Cucaracha” and dancing around like idiots in the hostel lobby.
Barcelona was beautiful. We were able to lay out on the beach the first day and I got burnt! It was so good to see hot sunshine, beaches, and palm trees. We toured Gaudi Park and the Sangra Familia. They were beautiful, interesting, and well, gaudy! The last day the weather was nice again so we hiked up to Montjuiic castle instead of taking the cable cars. It was an amazing view from the top overlooking the port, the city, and the mountains.
The last night we stayed with a friend from Madison who is studying in Barcelona and another guy friend from Madison studying in Madrid joined us. How crazy is it that people from home can all meet up so easily in foreign countries? We had a blast. Everything starts so late in Barcelona! We did not even go to dinner until 10PM. The four of us ate at this crazy little Mexican restaurant where Emily and I fit right in. We even became part of the mariachi band! Emily was wearing the mariachi band jacket and playing the violin, I was dancing with one of the members and passing out their flowers to everyone in the restaurant. Before we knew it we were receiving free tequila and tortillas from the staff. After we went to a Spanish shot bar and then to a Spanish bar where you pour your own drinks. Both we were “bueno”, though I am not certain when Spanish people sleep…
By this point in studying abroad Emily and I both were so comfortable traveling. New metro stations, hostels, buses, tourist places, etc. are now not intimidating but manageable and exciting. We know each other so well that we know exactly what to expect traveling together.
My travels are over…time is winding down…and I am off to enjoy my last days in London!