The Strength of a Smile

It has been challenging to write about this vacation because it was not a typical European getaway with a beer in one hand and a selfie stick in the other. Okay, fine, I had four beers, and we used a selfie stick once – on our last day at a fabulous airbnb.     I dove deeply into Poland’s history before arriving there. I found it necessary to do my best to get a feel for the country’s past in order to value it during my visit because Poland was never really high on my list. That is, until I found out it was the cheapest … Continue reading The Strength of a Smile

Mexico City: my pros and cons

    I looked at the piñatas on the ceiling while the lady stamped my passport. Recently, airplanes make me nervous instead of excited. I was thrilled the 12 hour flight from Madrid to Mexico City was the smoothest I’ve ever had. There was not a single moment of turbulence the entire time. We only wore seatbelts for take-off and landing. I kid you not.     I was eager to see him already, but when the doors opened, he was not there. It was pandemonium. We got confused with the gate, but after 45 min. searching for each other … Continue reading Mexico City: my pros and cons

I was really, really glad I wore my hiking boots.

No, but seriously. I was really, really, really glad I wore my hiking boots. Granada is the steepest city I have yet been to. It was my first trip to the South, a long time wish while in Spain. The main thing drawing me to this region was Flamenco dancing. Granada is known for housing  THE most symbolic touristic sight, representative of Spain: La Alhambra. This was a small city that housed around one thousand residents in Moorish Spain – a period that lasted about 7 centuries, starting in the 700’s. When we think of Spain’s stereotype, we often picture bullfights, Flamenco dancers, ham, and sangria. … Continue reading I was really, really glad I wore my hiking boots.

Breakfast in Budapest (and other meals)

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)

Day 3: freedom and choice

It was magic. A moment that balanced me out, and unraveled my existence into something that made sense. Suddenly everything made sense, or maybe it was the opposite. Once again I was walking in darkness. Lee, Lim, and I headed to Park Güell a little past 7 am. We went early because we heard it is all free before 8 am. Lee had gone before, but only to the free zone. Lim…I am not sure. Her stay in Barcelona was a little longer than expected, and she was anxious to move on to Portugal. But for me, this park (along with Sagrada … Continue reading Day 3: freedom and choice

Day 2: happiness

“People around me were staring because every time I put a grape in my mouth I’d say, ‘Boyfriend.’” Meet Lee. An outgoing Korean girl I met at the hostel in Barcelona. She was telling me about her midnight moment in Plaça d’Espanya where she also celebrated New Year’s Eve. We were sharing the first breakfast of 2016, and I learned she was traveling for a month. That is all I would ever know about her as the rest of our conversations centered on Barcelona. We made plans to visit Park Güell together the next day.   Being January 1st, Barcelona was … Continue reading Day 2: happiness