Barç-It-Up



When you realize you’ve had a post sitting in your
drafts for over a month…
SPRING BREAK Part 1 (Feb. 26th – Marc 1st): Around the time when it seems like you have just gotten back into school, yet you aren’t quite in the school mentality, but you are already thinking of the next “big break”. Now, let me say this. I don’t usually do anything “big” for spring break. During college, my spring break has been the middle of March and it usually ends up being the week of my birthday. Yay & Nay! Yay: I get a mini break from school and I can hang out with family and friends whom I don’t see often during the semester. Nay: I don’t get to celebrate with my friends from school because we’re all apart. But another YAY: When I get back to school, I can make it up 🙂 so it’s like I have an extended birthday time period.
Anyways, this time around, spring break was not the week of my birthday; it wasn’t even really during spring. Since I don’t have Friday classes this semester (for the first time ever in the history of my education, hallelujah), break started the last Thursday in February. My friends and I even took the liberty of starting the break a couple hours earlier so we could get to the airport in time for our flight. We left during the class intermission (yes 3 hour long classes call for pauses) and made it to the airport in time to get past by Deal Top”>security, eat, and wait for our boarding time in peace.
It’s not the norm to hear people talking about flying to other counties for a couple of days. At least it’s not the norm to me. But for SB2K15, I am blessed to say that I went to Barcelona, Spain for three nights and two days, spent four nights and five days in Lisbon, Portugal and visiting surrounding cities, and spent the remainder of the week relaxing back at my temporary “home” in Nice, France. |
Stop 1: Our stay at Free Hostels in Barcelona, Spain was wonderful.
1) Clean – “Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” 2) Comfortable – after the bed bug check, we checked out the quality of the mattresses: cloud-like. 3) Private Bathroom – Michelle can attest to that, “If I don’t come out in 45 minutes, I may have fallen asleep in the shower so come wake me up.” 4) Filling breakfast – We even carried croissants and Nutella packets for the road. 5) Helpful staff members and helpful staff members. Isn’t that such a great way to begin our trip? Although the name should really be changed from “Free” to something else, shoutout to Free Hostels in Barcelona, gracias.

 

THE FOOD WAS AMAZING. I don’t want anybody salivating over their devices but just know that if I were asked about monumental moments during the trip, food would probably be at the root of many adventures. Whether it was for the Wi-Fi hotspots, breakpoints, energy boosters or all of the above and more, we were in there. The wonderful thing is, because we are students, we tend to shoot for very affordable places and we are pretty good at it. Well priced restaurants that serve super tasty food for the win, always!

 

post-macaron workout

 

BIENVENIDO! Let me tell you about our touring skills. We spent three nights in Barcelona but only had two full days, Friday and Saturday. You wouldn’t believe how much we saw in those two days. When we asked the receptionists at the hostel for a map and about the easiest way to get around they told us train or bus (we used the train or walked everywhere) and they marked the spots we wanted to see for us on the map. But they told us it wouldn’t be possible to see all the things we wanted to see in just two days. They didn’t know about our skills. It’s not even like we rush through sites. We spend a good amount of time at each location to take in the beauty. On Friday we woke up early for breakfast at the hostel. Then went into town to meet up for the “Free Walking Tour” (which isn’t exactly free because the people that lead it are usually students and they need tips to make profit) and it was awesome. I learned so much and saw so much of the city. We took a lunch break and then did another walking tour in the afternoon where we were able to see different sites than we did that morning and learn even more about the history of the Barcelona and Spain as a whole.
BARCINO
Plaza del Rey (King’s Square)

 

                                
                                      oh the Catalans
human tower model
 
Christian martyr memorial
St. Jordi, 4/23, Day of the Book & the Rose
                           
back in the day to show there’s prostitutes upstairs
casually ran into Natasha
               
                  Sagrada Família dysfunctionality

 

functionality
some buildings spew old money
1st elevator in Spain is in this building
Saturday was our day to take ourselves around and make our own discoveries. We made our way to Camp Nou because why would I go to Barcelona and not walk the Messi way or sit where Neymar sat? Pshh, I wouldn’t.
                            

This picture on the left does not even capture how steep the hill we walked up is. I don’t know how some cars at the very top were reversed parked. How do you get out without hitting the car behind you? That’s something I wanted to witness but nobody was backing/driving out of their spots. Anyways, the quads were worked and the view was worth it once we got to the top of the park. That’s something I’ve enjoyed: making my way to the tops of each city I visit and taking in the view.

 

 

view from Parc Güell

One last thing; I am disappointed by the fact that the airlines of the European Union do not stamp passports, let alone ask for my identity when I’m passing the security checks or boarding. I could go to the airport without a passport and still be able to get on my flight or even sell my boarding pass to someone and they could get on as me, but only for traveling within the EU. Isn’t that weird? Oh yes, I can’t end this post without bragging just a little bit about how great of a packer I am. Our spring break trip was 7 nights and 7 days. I packed an outfit for each day–What? I like options. Here come the contradictions: a fleece pullover, a swimsuit, chucks, and sandals. Entertainment: playing cards, a book, and a journal. Then there’s the other necessities which are toiletries and of can’t forget my SWOOORD (Bible) because there can always be space made for that, and few more things. I was even able to buy a pair of comfy walking shoes and a swimsuit from Primark!

                                              
                    Passport app’s reminders >

The best part is, the “big break” didn’t end there.

      
        part 2 flocking your way soon

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