Round Trips & Missed Connections

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current trip.)

Europe, Croatia 334Sunday, September 16th.

My goal today is to see the Eiffel Tower and then go on a bike tour.

It happens … sort of.

By the time I figure out how to navigate the métro and make my way over, I realize there’s no way I’m going to make it up the tower and back down in time for the tour.

After inhaling a (not-so) cheap hotdog, I find folks with the Paris branch of Fat Tire Tours who, when they’ve gathered enough interested tourists, take us to their office (which are NOT, as you might think, located at the Eiffel Tower, but a short distance away).

While waiting in line to pay and pick a bike, I start chatting with a few people … and discover that there are a group of Canadians on the same tour as me.

IT’S LIKE WALKING INTO A FIELD OF UNICORNS.

There’s one couple who live in the west-end of Toronto. A pair of sisters from Kincardine, Ontario. A Torontonian who’s now living in New York.

To run into this many strangers at once, from my own country – while on a random tour, no less – fills my heart with a little bit of happiness and pride.

Europe, Croatia 341While my bike tour experience in Berlin was nicer in terms of the size of the tour group, Paris is much better, in terms of the space designated for bikes to travel on streets and sidewalks.

The tour starts at the far end of the Champ de Mars, in front of the École Militaire, and winds its way around, passing by such points of interest as the Dôme des Invalides, the Rodin Museum and Place de la Concorde.

Our guide offers choice facts from history as well as pop culture, and even provides a tip or two we may want to use for our sightseeing strategies.

We stop partway through the tour for a drink at the restaurant in the Tuileries Garden; I have a refreshing glass of white wine and a delicious crêpe. And we’re off again, passing by the Louvre on our way back.

The tour’s done by 7:30 p.m. By this time, I’ve bonded a bit with the sisters from Kincardine, Mary and Leah. I’m planning on going back to my flat to take a breather, but they’re leaving almost immediately for the night tour, which has a different route.

We want to meet up and explore after they’ve finished, which won’t be until about 11:30 p.m. Mary has a cell phone, but it’s dead. So we take a chance and plan to meet at 11:30 under the Eiffel Tower, near the spot where the tour company was collecting tourists earlier.

The sisters take off; I stay behind at the Fat Bike centre, to make a list of the places we’d passed on the tour, that I want to visit on foot.

What I don’t realize is that Paris’ métro system slows down considerably in the evening – especially on a Sunday.

By the time I return, it’s 11:45 p.m., with no sight of Mary or Leah.

I hang around for an extra half-hour, in hopes that perhaps they’re late in returning, or maybe they’re wandering around nearby.

Europe, Croatia 359I’m even lucky to see the Eiffel Tower light up and sparkle for a full five minutes. Despite what Parisians might think, I quite like it. I mean, it IS the City of Lights after all.

But I never see Mary and Leah. I won’t see them ever again. I suppose my gift of randomly running into people has either waned with time … or it just doesn’t work in Paris.

I head back to the métro, where I’m faced with another problem.

The station is closed.

Merde.

I try to get my weary synapses to fire. Looking at my map, I take a chance and walk until I come across the next station that’s open and will get me “home”.

I find a station I’m able to access. But the métro line I need ride to get “home” isn’t working.

I consult my smudged, repeatedly-folded pocket transit map and opt to try another line. I hop on the next train and ride it to one of the major interchange stations.

The thing about those interchange stations? They’re huge. Even if you know where you’re going, it takes forever to get from point A to point B. Especially in Paris.

I’m working with the added disadvantage of being new to the system, and – coupled with being directionally challenged – heightens my sense of panic at trying to get to the other line as fast as I can. But it’s all in vain.

Cursing under my breath, I return the way I’ve come, hoping to ride the line in the opposite direction. But that, too, has also now stopped running.

Europe, Croatia 362A loud, piercing alarm screeches throughout the station – probably a tactic to get those late-night stragglers to leave the station.

In any case, I’m tired and screwed.

I eventually surface at street level, directly facing the Arc de Triomphe.

Since I have to accept the fact it’s going to be a long trip, I do the only thing I feel I can do at 1:30 a.m.:

I pull out my camera and snap a photo.

I take a couple of resigned breaths, look at my detailed map of Paris, and start walking.

I walk along the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, past the expensive shops and the late-night stragglers grabbing their last drinks for the night, until I hit Place de la Concorde.

After snapping a few more photos – and getting Europe, Croatia 365myself turned around a couple of times – I figure out where I am and find my way back to Rue de la Rivoli and, eventually, “home”.

It only takes an hour, which is better than I expect.

It is said that everything happens for a reason. Perhaps I was meant to get lost. Did I just see what I was meant to see – Paris at night? Or was there something more?

One thing’s for certain: my walk that first day – along with the bike tour – has come in extremely handy.

Baked Goods, Boating and Classy Dining

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current trip.)

Thursday, September 6th.

First thing in the morning, I peek out from behind the shutters.

Everything’s wet.

A group of us are supposed to rent a couple of boats and tour the waters around Hvar Island today. The gray skies above seem to suggest that we should consider other options.

I’m also not feeling like my normal self; this slowly developing cold is sapping my strength and my motivation to get out of bed. I go back to bed and curl up for another 45 minutes.

I eventually meet most of the others on the main strip, who are also doubting whether we can take to the water today. Our trip leader Livia says that – according to someone at the tour information office – the weather is due to clear up by noon.

While we wait out the weather, we opt to drop by a local patisserie that Natalie and Josie discovered the day before. My order of tea and a cookie is just what the vacation doctor ordered;  the former warms my belly, while the latter satisfies my craving for something a bit decadent.

Josie and I hang back at the patisserie while the others wander away – just doing simply nothing. It’s probably one of the first times during our trip so far where we’ve had a chance to do that.

At noon, we meet the others and – as forecast by the tourism folks – the skies are clear.

We split two small rental motorboats between the nine of us, and decide who will be operating the boats. I’m sharing a boat with Natalie, Paul, Mariam and Sanj.

Europe, Croatia 154After a bit of discussion, we elect Paul to be our operator and awkwardly lumber into the boat and wait for the guy from whom we’re renting – a scruffy-looking guy, whose name I can’t remember – to give Paul a brief lesson in operating the boat.

I don one of the lifejackets stuffed in the front of the boat – mostly for my own safety, as I’m not a strong swimmer … but also partially because before Paul gets his “lesson”, Natalie recalls a story in which Paul had previously operated a boat, which he managed to flip over.

So, nope – not really taking any chances.

Luckily for us, Paul aces the mini-lesson and before long, we are on our way.

The scenery from the boat is just lovely, and it’s nice and cool on the water, passing by boats of various shapes and sizes.

Europe, Croatia 159We zip along to a couple inlets. The first is a quiet and calm mini-paradise, with a little resto beside it. The shallow bit is rocky/pebbly, but it’s nice to just sit in.

But about 15 feet from the edge, there’s an immediate drop, which is great for the stronger swimmers like Natalie, Rob and Richard to go take a dip.

Our time at the restaurant starts out light and playful, with lots of laughs. But it’s a bit dampened by the end of our visit, as the guy who runs the resto turns out to be a bit of a dick, charging way too much for a couple of the dishes we order.

No matter. On to the next.

The second inlet looks a lot nicer, but not many of us venture into the water this time around. We return to Hvar by early evening.

My boating posse, along with Jennifer and Josie (who have stayed on dry land for the day), start our evening at this posh-looking outdoor lounge for pre-dinner drinks.

We’re the only ones there – it’s still early – so we spread out and comfortably chill out for a while with our cocktails (why hello there, tasty Kir Royale!).

Europe, Croatia 167Dinner’s at a Croatian/Mediterranean fusion restaurant at the end of the main drag, called Divino.  And “divino” it was. Everything, from the amuse-bouche, to our appetizers and entrees, are absolutely delicious.

Except for Miriam, we all take a pass on dessert – because we’re heading back to our new, favourite patisserie from earlier.

After stuffing ourselves with more sweet baked goods, some of us walk (or, in my case, waddle) around a bit longer, drifting past the bars and party-goers, ogling an ornate yacht or two, before shuffling off to our rooms.

One more day, and one more destination awaits – the town of Split.

Sand, Sun, and a Smorgasboard

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current trip.)


Tuesday, September 4th.

Sleeping on Monday night/Tuesday morning is a challenge.

Not only because of the heat and humidity. But because of those nearby church bells at St. Mark’s.

They ring. EVERY. FIFTEEN. MINUTES.

UGH.

Europe, Croatia 085Later in the morning, a bunch of us (Rob, Richard, Livia, Sanj and myself) decide to rent some bicycles and hit a beach – Vela Przina beach in the village of Lumbarda, to be precise.

I literally haven’t been on a bike in years. Even at the bike rental shop, when I initially attempt to sit on a bike, I nearly lose my balance and narrowly miss taking out a postcard carousel.

Slightly embarrassed, I work on getting my “bike legs” back, as quickly as I can.

It’s a slightly hilly seven-kilometre bike ride to Lumbarda, so I find some of the inclines challenging. The gears are also a bit wonky. But the views are nice, as is having the freedom to ride without a helmet – much like I did when I was a kid.

And then finally – the beach!

Rob and Richard take off for the water. Sanj, Livia and I spend the first part of our beach day taking some welcome shade at the nearby bar/restaurant, drinking and chatting.

Europe, Croatia 084Livia and I finally get the courage to wade into the water, while Sanj keeps out of the sun. It’s cool at first, but warms up after a few moments, and I take a moment to fully submerge my head.

While in the water, we run into four of the Aussies – Natalie and Paul (the siblings), Marian and Josie. They opted to rent a car and drove the seven kilometres.

I actually haven’t had the chance to really speak to them up until this point, so it’s good to finally see them for more than about 10 minutes and chat about how they’re finding the trip so far.

I opt to leave a bit earlier than expected, with Sanj, as we want to stop a few times on the way back to snap some pictures.

I haven’t yet been to Italy. But what we see before us is what I would imagine part of the Tuscan countryside to look like – rows of grapevines, red clay roofs and hilly backdrops.

There is much more traffic to navigate on our way back. Between the blazing sun and exerting more energy to make room for cars, scooters and trucks, my body has become quite the sweat factory.

I’m finally glad when – t-shirts clinging to our backs – we return to Korčula town in one piece!

Europe, Croatia 100After we drop off our bikes, Sanj and I continue poking around town, checking out side streets here and there, then head up to St. Mark’s Cathedral to check out the bell tower. Looks like Richard and Rob have the same idea, as that’s where we run into them.

The views of Korčula town – and the nearby water – from here are absolutely lovely. A couple of the bells ring while we’re up there.

With the evening comes another change of scenery: the group hops onto a bus headed to the village of Pupnat, for dinner at a local restaurant (called Konoba Mate) – where the ingredients for all the dishes served are locally grown or sourced.

As the air thickens with humidity and the skies grow dark with a possible threat of rain, we’re seated in the corner of the outdoor dining room, underneath a romantic overhang of vines.

Europe, Croatia 116We’re served an array of items – meats, fish, cheeses, strong, sharp-tasting liquor that tastes like walnuts and berries, pasta, and so on. The meal itself has around 4 or 5 courses, but luckily all the portions are meant for sharing. Each course is even more delicious than the last and doesn’t leave me stuffed.

Even more than the savoury meal, it’s nice to finally have the group together – laughing, trading stories and finding out more about each other.

Upon our return to Korčula, a bunch of us take a short stroll about, but then return to our quarters for the evening.

Tomorrow, we head for the island of Hvar.

Dobar Dan, Korčula!

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current trip.)

Monday, September 3rd.

Back home in Canada, it’s Labour Day.

I meet Sanj and Karen at around 10 a.m. for our final wandering expedition around Dubrovnik’s old town.

Europe, Croatia 062First stop: the old Franciscan monastery.

It’s got a lovely, lush cloister/courtyard that provides a bit of cover from the bright sun and the heat.

It also has the third-oldest functioning pharmacy in Europe.  No, seriously. Karen takes advantage of this handy fact to pick up some allergy medication.

Nearby, a small gallery of artefacts from the pharmacy’s earlier incarnation is on display – jugs, mortars and pestles, and other books, tools and such – in addition to other relics and religious iconography that adorn the monastery.

The last thing I remember seeing before leaving is the wall damage left by a missile, which hit the monastery on December 6, 1991. The casing is sitting on the floor, directly beneath the crater and the information plaque. Another haunting reminder of a more volatile time.

Karen, Sanj and I trek through the side streets to find Café Bar Buža, down by the rocks near the water, for some cold mid-morning drinks.

Europe, Croatia 068In addition to taking in the view, we watch a small gang of teenage boys – and one brave older man – throwing caution to the wind and launching themselves off a nearby rock face,  into the blue waters below.

Just watching some of them as they work up the courage to do something so care-free (and, to some, a bit foolhardy, since there’s a sign which clearly reads, “ACCESS DENIED – DANGER TO LIFE”) is entertaining. The sounds of splashing as bodies make contact with the water below adds to the laid-back seaside soundtrack.

Following a brief lunch, we make the climb back up to the apartments to meet the others for departure.

We’re taken by minivan to the port town of Orebić, over an hour’s drive outside of Dubrovnik. Livia peppers our extremely knowledgeable driver with questions about the countryside and local agriculture, relaying the facts to us through a microphone.

Europe, Croatia 070At Orebić, we grab a ferry across to our destination, the island (and town) of Korčula. During the ride, we become more acquainted with my fellow Torontonian, Richard. According to his story, he and Rob ended up on this tour as part of a grand prize they won at a fundraising triathalon.

Funnier still, Richard says he kept telling friends they would win the trip. Behold the power of positive thinking!

Upon reaching dry land, we’re assigned our rooms (but not without some last minute confusion and re-assignments).

My trip roommate, Jennifer, wants to get settled relatively soon so she can walk around and get a feel for the town. I completely understand this – she told me earlier in the trip that she’s directionally-challenged. But for some reason, as we mount the stairs towards our accommodation, this new setting has given her some cause for consternation.

Jennifer’s slight anxiety leaves me puzzled. Compared to Dubrovnik – where I really felt unsure which end was up – Korčula looks (and feels) dead easy to navigate. And this is coming from someone who herself is a bit directionally-challenged.

korcFor starters, Korčula town is a fraction of the size of Dubrovnik. As well – and most interestingly – urban planners of years past smartly designed the old town (which runs north to south) in the shape of a fishbone. In fact, it’s said that the “ribs” were arranged to reduce the effects of wind and the sun, providing some comfort for residents.

Most of us are staying at the “top” of the town, above the pizzeria in St. Mark’s Square – across from the cathedral. The highlight? The bells ringing with precision approximately every 15 minutes or so – not including the chimes at the top of the hour.

Another small dilemma arises when we reach our room: Jennifer and I have been given one key to share … which would be all right, except that while Jennifer plans to spend the evening indoors, I’m going with most of the group to go see the traditional Moreška at the nearby cultural centre. We ask Livia to investigate this on our behalf.

Livia gives the group an orientation of the town, followed by dinner. Tonight’s restaurant – a fish-and-seafood establishment – sits along one of the streets (which actually feels more like a large corridor with seemingly infinite steps) just off the “spine” of Korčula town. We sit, four to a table – except for Aussies Jackie and Julia, who initially join us, then leave to find somewhere else to eat.

I share a “booth” with Rob, Richard and Karen for dinner, which consists of delicious grilled vegetables and three types of fish. It also is great to finally hang out with different members of the tour and be immersed in such good conversation.

We then head over to the local theatre for the Moreška performance. There are all sorts of people there, from different tours all over the place. Our hostess/MC for this evening’s show is either a super-talented polyglot or simply well-rehearsed, as she makes her introductory remarks in five languages.

The evening starts off with a folk singing group (in the Moreška style, native to Korčula), followed by the dance itself. I can only imagine how physically taxing it is for the dancers – a lot of them young guys – especially during one segment of dance, where the dancers are clanging swords so hard, the friction creates sparks!

(My only quibble about that performance is the number of people who refuse to STOP  TALKING. It seriously grinds my gears.)

After the show, Rob and Richard disappear into the night – as is their trademark – while the rest of us look around for a bar to grab drinks. It’s all in vain, though. We meet up with Jennifer and end up at the pizzeria below our hotel rooms.

The end of the night is a bit sedate. But some of us intend to make up for it tomorrow – with a trip to the beach!

(*Image of map, courtesy of http://www.behance.net.*)

Dubrovnik, Day One

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current one.)

Sunday, September 2nd.

Our day starts with a fantastic breakfast – cereal, dates, fresh fruit, cheese, ham, eggs, bread … It’s all there, and much more than I’m expecting.

Europe, Croatia 005The sun has already started to blaze by the time we reach Dubrovnik’s Old Town (on foot), to walk along the town wall.

Our trip leader, Livia, gives us an overview of the Old Town, its architecture, and the Balkan Wars of the 1990s. It’s actually somewhat hard to fathom that it’s been about 20 years since this very town was shelled in that conflict – and that isn’t all that long ago.

Walking along the wall, we’re treated to a spectacular view of the water and the town skyline. But I’m already sweating profusely – I’m convinced I will absolutely melt into a puddle of skin, and concerned my sunscreen won’t do its job.

After the walk, we take a  much-needed shade-and-drinks break. Sitting with Jennifer, Sanj and Livia, we get to chatting and learn a bit more about Livia – her travels, aspirations and projects in the works (including hopes of one day running her own specialized tours in Budapest).

Our group splits off into smaller groups, heading in separate directions for the afternoon. Jennifer, Karen (the lone Kiwi on the trip, and a hell of a traveller), Sanj, Rob and Richard (the Torontonians) and I opt to take the cable car up Srd Hill – location of probably the best views of Dubrovnik’s Old City.

Despite the stuffy, cramped car ride on the way up, the perspective is nice as advertised.

Europe, Croatia 028At the top of Srd Hill, the views are even more breathtaking – the city wall, the red clay rooftops, the nearby islands, and the glistening water – all of it alluring.

We wander around the gigantic cross and flagpole at the top of the hill. The scenery behind the visitors’ centre is rugged, rocky, and dry. It reminds me very much of some of the landscape I saw in Morocco three years prior.

Karen opts to walk down the hill, while the rest of us take the cable car (this time, much less crowded) to the bottom. Rob and Richard take off soon afterwards; Sanj, Jennifer and I opt to wander around a bit, then grab lunch.

Later, we head to the war photo gallery. It’s a visual eyeopener into the conflicts which gripped the Balkans during the 1990s. The images of people with looks of despair on their faces, of men readying themselves for armed skirmish, even the photos of Dubrovnik’s deserted main streets, and night shots of the town aflame amidst the shelling, are simply arresting. Just looking at them feels surreal. As I’ve said before, it’s almost impossible for me – as a stranger from another country – to fully understand what took place in this region –  even with visual proof as vivid as this.

Europe, Croatia 050Afternoon morphs into evening, and on this one, part of the group re-assembles for dinner down by the water, near part of the city wall.

Determined to embrace the seafood culture of the Dalmatian coast (and not to eat meat too early on), I order  scampi – another dish I’ve never had! – along with some mussels. The scampi, while decent, is too much work for my novice fingers; the “salad” (which includes pâté that simply melts on my tongue!) and the mussels are much better.

On our post-dinner stroll, the group again breaks up and go separate ways. Karen, Sanj, Jackie and Julia – an Australian couple – and I walk around in search of somewhere to grab a drink or two. Jackie and Julia aren’t with us very long – they go back to the apartments after our first bar stop.

The rest of us stay where we are, trapped in a square on a patio between one venue playing live music and another blasting Euro-beats. We eventually leave, grabbing gelato on the way back.

Tomorrow is another day – one with a change of scenery.

Touchdown in Dubrovnik

(Note: The following post describes details from a previous trip, NOT a current trip.)

Saturday, September 1st.

dubrovnik old townThe long voyage is finally over. I’ve made it to Dubrovnik!

Stepping off the plane, I’ve been bracing myself for some searing Croatian heat. But there’s a bit of a breeze, which makes it more bearable than expected. I glance at the rocky, hilly landscape as I cross the tarmac towards the main terminal.

The driver who picks me up in the departures lounge turns out to be the guy who runs the budget apartment complex I (and the tour group I’m meeting) happen to be staying at for the next couple of nights.

I have read in previous online reviews that he can be gruff; from our initial meeting, he seems pretty civil to me.

What isn’t cool is the fact the airline – in transit – has destroyed one of the arms of my backpack, making it impossible to evenly bare my load as we walk towards the hotel owner’s car.

Sitting in the back seat of the four-door sedan, I simply try to take in the scenery as we zip down the road – the cypress trees, the rugged hillside, and the red, clay roofs of homes and other buildings. The most breathtaking view, though, is of the Adriatic Sea below.

The hotel owner mentions it’s a bit misty today, which apparently isn’t common for Dubrovnik at this time of year. I don’t mind in the least.

When we arrive, I’m met by the owner’s daughter, Magdelena – a skinny, leggy girl, probably no more than 18 or 19, if that. She walks me to my accommodation, points out the tour group’s meeting spot with a languid, I-don’t-really-care gesture, lets me into the apartment, hands me the keys, points out the beds, and leaves.

While taking a pre-dinner shower, I hear my roommate-to-be’s voice greeting me through the bathroom door. When I do meet her face-to-face, I find out she’s Jennifer from Austin, Texas. I also meet some other fellow travellers, before finding out they’re with another tour group that’s headed for Albania.

Dang. False start. Take two.

I meet 12 more people who are actually part of my tour group. There’s a contingent from Australia (a brother-sister duo, a couple named Jackie and Julia, and two women probably a bit younger than me, travelling solo), a lone New Zealander who’s been travelling on her own for a number of weeks,  and a couple – Rob and Richard – from Toronto! (Proof the world is, in some ways, smaller than we think.)

The last member of our group to arrive is a fellow from Bristol named Sanj, who’s just spent the better part of the day in transit. Travelling hell aside, he seems pretty easygoing and good to speak with. Finally, we meet our trip leader, Livia, who’s from Hungary.

After our introductory group meeting, we head down to dinner – except for my fellow Torontonians, who have gone  ahead of us to find their own restaurant.

We pick a place in the Old City, where I have a seafood risotto, and prošek, a sweet dessert wine (very sweet, indeed). The dish itself is very tasty, but the portion’s huge; the prawns arrive at our dining table served in their entirety (feelers, eyes, legs and all). I don’t usually have prawns, period, never mind whole prawns. It doesn’t disturb me. It’s just … different.

After the meal – and some good introductory conversation – most folks turn in for the night. Livia, Jennifer, Sanj and I walk about for a look around, trying to find Jennifer something to eat (turns out she doesn’t eat seafood), and enjoying the remainder of our evening.

It’s a pretty laid-back start to our trip (which is just as well). Let’s see what the next day brings.

(Photo courtesy of Bed and Breakfast World.com.)

From Solo to Surrounded and Back Again

It´s funny how things can change in the blink of an eye.

The first couple of days, I´d been adjusting to being alone. I´d also been adjusting to hearing languages other than English (and being frustrated at not being able to communicate as easily) …
And then, pow! All of a sudden it became sort of easy, because I was suddenly coming into contact with people who would speak English. Well, some, not all.

And I finally got to hang out with some fellow tourist/travellers. And it seemed to all be a matter of timing.

Yesterday, I made it over to Plaça de Catalunya in time for the Picasso walk (only three or four minutes more than the Gothic Quarter walk the day before) and got to talking to this older Kiwi couple while we waited for our tour guide (who were super nice).

At the end of the two-hour walk, we made into the Picasso museum, which had loads of art from his different artistic periods (and yes, there was some Cubism). I was supposed to meet up with my new Canadian friend Priscilla later in the day, and was trying to figure out what time to leave the museum to go back to the Raval to e-mail her when … there she was, in the exact same room, with two girls she met at her hostel. The timing couldn´t have been better!

After the museum, we went down near the water for a bit of shopping, etc. We did a LOT of walking! I was so tired after that!

But it didn´t stop there … we parted ways for a bit to rest, and then I took the metro back down to her hostel later on, and we went to dinner. The paella was decent (if a bit small) … and the mussels were good, too. But the sangria was friggin´HUGE! It was, like, a litre for each of us! But it tasted so good.

We finished it off with some gelato down the street, and back to her hostel to find out what some of her fellow guests were doing.

It was nuts. They started off with a drinking game (and it reminded me how much older I was than some of those) … then we went out. I thought we´d go down the Ramblas. We ended up walking the long way, along the boardwalk, down to the beach (and I got a piggyback from one of the Aussies in the group – good man, if too brave for his own good) .

The club was typical (although the front door staff gave us grief for not having flyers – those apparently work)… but it was loads of good harmless fun. I ended up having to crash at Priscilla´s hostel, rather than trying to get back to my part of town in the middle of the night, or trying to do the crawl of shame.

The next day, Priscilla and I managed to get ourselves up and we went shopping in my part of town. We also met up with another girl from her hostel, and we just went from place to place. We ended our afternoon with some tapas, as both of them were leaving Barcelona.

So both of them were gone, which is kinda sad. But it was good being around people I could relate to, at least for a little while.

Tomorrow´s my last day. I´ll have to use the time wisely, because Friday I´m going to have to re-orient myself all over again.