It’s been a month since I crossed the pond from Europe to America. Now that I am sitting in a comfortable air-conditioned kitchen, and eating ice-cream made with cashew milk, I can write what I remember. It was Friday, June 9th. I left home at 7:00 am and met Sarah at the Madrid airport for our flight to Milan. When the plane landed and they opened the doors, I heard a musical “Buon Giorno!” that immediately put me back in touch with my love for Italian. I was shy to try what little I could remember from the college classes … Continue reading Cinque Terre: 16 long hours and a fleeting day.
“Every part of my body hurt. Except my heart.” – Cheryl Strayed DAY 1 – Madrid to Lugo to Sarria “I cannot wait to be immersed and consumed by nature.” I made myself stop by a bench in front of the bus station and write this down, right under the red pen title: Camino Day 1. I had taken a Blabla Car from Madrid to Lugo, and now I needed to catch a bus to Sarria where I would meet British Bradley. He had started the Camino a couple days before me in Ponferrada. Doing the Camino together was … Continue reading Camino de Santiago de Compostela: A Diary
I had no idea what I was eating. It was like a giant pretzel. There was no coffee. Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. “Sometimes I forget I have an addiction,” I had told the girls. It is not until I get that mid-morning headache after not getting my early morning cup of coffee that I realize how dependent I’ve become on it. Our biggest challenge in Budapest was finding a place where we could grab a quick, to-go breakfast while rushing to our first tourist attraction. This day we were headed to the Jewish Quarter with a 2 1/2 hour free walking … Continue reading Breakfast in Budapest (and other meals)
Simone opened the door to our Airbnb, her hair wet from the shower, and a lose dress. “Of course she already looks like she lives here,” I thought. She had arrived a few hours before us. Sarah, Kristen, and I flew together, coincidentally sitting next to each other. These three girls are my Girl Power Team while living in Madrid. This trip was overdue. We decided to travel together during a late lunch at De Patata Madre in Bilbao, Madrid. Kristen and Sarah had spontaneously bought cheap flight tickets with a sketchy sounding airline: Wizzair. Simone and I spontaneously decided to join, though this city … Continue reading Enchantment
We had three full days, and one early morning to experience Madrid together. Before going to Portugal, I had a chance to walk my friend, Christy, around the city center. We touched based on main places like Plaza Mayor, Mercado de San Miguel, and Sol. But now it was time to pick and choose the more local/expat iconic things to do. Christy wanted us to do things I had not experience yet in this city; I wanted to bring her to places that as a local, I cannot get enough of. So here is my list of Madrid’s Can’t-Get-Enough-Of experiences: Baobab – … Continue reading My Madrid’s Can’t-Get-Enough-Of
“People in Porto love Costa and crepes,” we’d say…But it was really just us that kept going back to Costa for their giant soymilk caramel lattes, and Hand Go for their gluten free/lactose free dripping goodness, mouth-watering crepes. I have pretty healthy eating habits, and Christy is celiac, so she cannot eat gluten or lactose products. This is fine in Spain. As long as you can have rice and potatoes, there are plenty of dishes you can eat and still experience the food culture. But in Portugal, we had a tougher time. “Just tell them you want a really salty … Continue reading Shot O’Clock (When In Porto)
Christina Smac&Tosh – read the sign I held for almost one hour at the airport, waiting for you. It was worth the stares to get this adventure started right. You walked through the sliding doors, and I yelled out your name, but you didn’t see me. So I did the movie style run toward you, waving my arm. Nope, you did not see me. I planted myself in front of you, and you did the wide eyes thing! I hardly remember your first day in Madrid, actually. The image is a haze of disbelief that you came to see me. I don’t think I … Continue reading Mi Casa Es Su Casa!
“No I’m not gonna change yet! I look hot!” That’s apparently Christina’s first memory of me, freshman year of college. I was in the dance team, and had just returned from a basketball game. I bumped into my roommate and her friends, they were playing board games in the common area. I sat on the couch instead of going up to my dorm room to change into the more appropriate lounge/make-up free “dress code” of the evening. A conceited time in my life, but hey…In my defense, High School had really sucked, and I was reinventing myself this first year of college…exploring who I wanted to be. … Continue reading See you tomorrow.
I am excited 98% of the time lately. But I haven’t been THIS excited in a while. I was wide awake at 4:30 am, and I knew it had to be the anticipation of this hike that wouldn’t let me sleep for long. I left the house before the sun came out, and there was not a soul in the streets. “Only the brave are out,” WhatsApp Nacho (one of the Spaniard friends I’ve made here). “Then what am I doing here?!” I wrote back. But I had a good feeling about this day… I met up with Sonia, Nacho, and Ismael … Continue reading I could try to describe it in depth.
The breeze blew my hair softly, and the sun warmed up my bare skin. I was shirtless on top of a hill in what looked like the middle of nowhere. “Wait, what?” I just read your mind. Alright, I will explain. It all began on a normal Friday morning in Alcobendas. I woke up at 6 am, and made strong coffee in the old-school Italian, moka pot. I made breakfast, and enjoyed some light-reading before heading to school. Mornings here have been in the low 40’s, which is practically a snowstorm for a Florida girl. I have a very peaceful commute to work, which makes for … Continue reading “Tired” is not who I am anymore.