There are some days when I get really homesick for no particular reason, but in general life in
WEEKEND TRIP #1:
On Saturday, Oct. 20 (day after my 22nd b-day), Oli and I left for a little two day trip to the Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun), which is the southern coast of
WEEKEND TRIP #2:
On Thursday Nov. 1st we didn’t have any school because it was a Spanish holiday (Todos los Santos). So I left that day to visit my friend who lives in Berlin! I think traveling by yourself is always a learning experience, and I learned a few things that day.
1) Buy your bus ticket to Madrid at least the day before. My flight left from Madrid at 7:30PM. It’s a 5 hour bus ride from Granada to Madrid. I got to the bus station to try to catch the 10:00 bus to Madrid. Turns out, since it was a holiday, everyone was traveling and the earliest bus I could get was 1:30PM. I got to Madrid at 7:30 and missed my flight.
2) When you’re going to be stuck on a public bus for several hours, don’t drink a liter of water! I almost peed my pants.
3) Don’t drop and break your cell phone.
4) Make sure you know how to properly use a pay phone.
5) When sleeping at the airport, don’t fall asleep underneath what turns out to be an air conditioning vent. After missing my flight, the next earliest flight for Berlin was at 6:30AM Friday morning, so I had to spend the night in the Madrid airport.
6) When everything goes wrong, try not to cry because it will all turn out okay in the end.
Needless to say, Thursday was a miserable day that I would love to forget. Nevertheless, I arrived in Berlin Friday morning at about9:30. I stayed with Lilly who was one of the girls I met when I first moved into my apartment in Granada. She’s from Berlin and she invited me to come visit her. One nice thing about Berlin was that when I stepped off the plane it felt like I was back home in Seattle. It was cold, wet, and very green. There is no grass in Granada, but there was in Berlin. The climate in Berlin was very similar to Seattle, which was very nice! Lilly was very generous and hospitable. She let me sleep in her room, while she slept in her roommate’s room. She cooked me breakfast and showed me many things in the city. The first day, she had to work for a few hours, so she showed me how to use the Metro system, which was very easy and convenient. And she told me which places to go see. So I did the tourist sight-seeing thing on my own for a few hours. I discovered that I knew very little about the history of Berlin, which there is a lot of. But as the weekend went on I learned a lot more. It was very convenient to have a local friend as a guide. Lilly showed me nearly everything in the city – about as much as one can see in two days. I was exhausted by the end of it all. I saw the Brandenburg Gate, the TV Tower, The Reichstag, The Wall, Checkpoint Charlie, two Christmas markets, a new age art gallery, Potsdamer Platz (large shopping mall), several non-touristy neighborhoods, many metro stations, classic Berlin style architecture, and a bit of the Berlin nightlife, among other things.
It was a fantastic trip, Berlin is a beautiful city and it is huge. The history is amazing. It is also very hip, young, and artistic. It was very easy to get around when Lilly was not with me, because most people that met spoke English. And Lilly taught me a little bit of German as well. The whole time I was there the weather was very gray, wet, and cold. Lilly kept on apologizing for the weather, but I was trying to explain to her that it was actually very comforting, because we have the same weather in Seattle. However, on Sunday afternoon as I was catching the train back to the airport, (just like in Gibraltar) the clouds began to disappear and the sun came out just in time to say goodbye to me. I can’t complain though because it’s been almost nothing but sun the whole time in Granada. I didn’t miss my flight back to Madrid, and as not to relive the experiences of the Thursday from Hell, I paid for a plane ticket from Madrid to Granada. One interesting thing about my trip, was that when I came back to Granada I felt like I was home for some reason. Things were familiar to me, and I really realized how much Spanish I actually know, since I was able to at least understand and speak the language. It was quite a relief.
Well I think that pretty much brings us to today. I have been having an extraordinary time. I still miss home and think about the comforts of home everyday, but I am trying to live it up as much as I can over here and I think I’m doing a pretty good job. Now you all are up to date!