Cinque Terre: 16 long hours and a fleeting day.

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.

Madrid Guide: from expat to traveler

  I am so near the finish line. I have completed my second school year as an Auxiliar de Conversación and private English teacher in Madrid, Spain. Tomorrow I will fly back to Florida, United States. Madrid filled me with aliveness for two years, and it will always hold a place in my heart. I have written about Madrid before, and have recommended all my go-to places (from that time). Check out my older entry: My Madrid’s Can’t-Get-Enough-Of   🙂   Time and again that list gets edited. By May 2017, when my good friend Ariena visited me while on … Continue reading Madrid Guide: from expat to traveler

Prague was The Boy with a Golden Penis in the largest castle complex in the world.

Prague was a poem. That’s exactly what it was. It was arriving during sunrise on a smelly bus from Kraków, Poland. It was a scary ride on the metro, where you can only get tickets with coins. No cash, no cards, but good ol’ fashioned coins. We learned that Czech Republic was occupied by the Germans for 300 years, then the Nazis during WWII, followed by the communists, and is currently flooding with tourists. So the least you can do, as a guest, is say hello in their language: ahoj! (pronounced like “chips ahoy!” My favorite cookies!)     We stayed at … Continue reading Prague was The Boy with a Golden Penis in the largest castle complex in the world.

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)

Enchantment

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

Weekends in Madrid

  “Fine, I won’t shave my legs,” I finally decided before putting shorts on. Yuli and I were comparing leg hair length, and what was worth a shave, while I exercised in my bedroom, wearing a bikini, and she studied in the living room, still in her pj’s. We had sunbathing plans for the weekend. Side-note: I recently moved from Alcobendas to Madrid’s center, and it has been an upgrade in more ways than one. I am living in a beautiful, spacious piso (Spain’s word for flat) walking distance from the Royal Palace, and famous Calle Princesa. I live with 3 Spanish girls, all in their 20’s. … Continue reading Weekends in Madrid

Happy Decaying Buildings

“Quiere marihuana?” he said, and it was a whole new take on hospitality. We arrived in Porto, Portugal after getting our very “home-made” tickets at the RyanAir counter, and having a short, smooth flight. Having only learned 3 phrases in Portuguese, we emerged from the São Bento metro stop, and instantly loved the city. I LOVE the first time you come out of the subway in a place you’ve never been, and get shocked by beauty. It’s a shot of adrenaline and wonder that keeps me addicted to travel. There was so much color against so much gray: happy decaying … Continue reading Happy Decaying Buildings

The day a pigeon’s tush covered my eyes.

I learned how much happiness can fit into a single moment.  I retrieve images of this day from my memory to calm myself with its lifetime guarantee joy supply. After Stonehenge, the tour bus drove us to Bath. We were falling asleep on our way there, listening to the tour guide speak an overwhelming amount of information about this place. All I remember is that this was Jane Austen’s hometown and was founded by the Romans. The trees opened up in the mountain road to reveal a sight so incredible, and unreal, that my best friend smashed me against the … Continue reading The day a pigeon’s tush covered my eyes.