Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Barcelona, Montpellier (*France) and Cassis (France)

Now to Montpellier, where we rented a car and picked up Bren from the airport.

our awesome hostel in Cassis, the small village in France

In Cassis, yesterday, we decided to go out on a boat for an hour before we moved onto get our car back to NIce. here are pictures from that. The sea was rough and i felt so sick haha but it got better. We visited the Calaques, or something like that, which are these tiny rock inlets in the coast where people hang out in the summer. It gets very warm and there are tons of fish and swimmers. Apparently, in the last Calaque we visited, people rock climb all along the cliffs.
Will write in more detail when i have time, but here are some pictures. xo

After Cassis, we drove to Nice. WE had a fun ride.. besides the windy windy mountain roads, wholy man. Unfortunately, we got our car in an hour late and they charged us a full day extra ... they did this without telling Karoll, they told her after she signed off... and so I said "ok well then we will have the car back tomorrow at 4, see you guys later" and he said nooo sorry you would have had to call in advance. I got this crazy , unexpected urge to grab the keys and steal the car for another 24 hours..... but decided against it. We got ripped off and really angry. So we loitered at the airport for an hour or two disrupting the quiet, and then caught a bus into Nice. Here we are at the greatest hostel ever (free internet, free breakfast, bar, common area, clean showers, laundry) .. just about to head downtown Nice for the day then we will buy train tickets into Italy tomorrow. Here is one last pic of us on our roadtrip. Been an amazing trip, so wonderful to have Bren here now. We sure miss Joc, big time, but we just tell Karoll all our ridiculous stories about her hehehe. Also, sister Katie (not to be confused with Katie Prentice), Karoll reminds us of you.... so we kind of have you here as well. XOXO

will post again and write about Cassis and Barcelona more.

dont even ask me how Brenna scored the front seat, haha


Well I accidently just published the lastt post too early.... so here is Cabo de Gata continued. It is just a village of about 1000 people right on the Mediterranean. At this time of year we were clearly the only tourists there, other than people from Denmark in motor homes, and so everyone stared at us and laughed at us... we get laughed at lots.
We ended up eating breakfast and dinner both days at this little restaurant on the water where we could pick up a little Wi Fi on Karoll's phone. The breakfasts were so good - fresh fruit and bread - and it was just very relaxing.

 We decided to rent bikes on our first day there and bike down the coast. We gave 10 euros to this bossy little man in a grocery shop and then he hooked us up. He also hooked us up with hilarious, huge high vis vests that we were supposed to wear if we biked at night. Needless to say, we made it home by dusk hahahah. We got laughed at enough, the last thing we needed was to be the glowing foreigns biking down the beach.
We biked along the road down to a little town called Los Salinas (or something along these lines) and weaseled a beer out of a closed pub. We sat on the beach and hung out for a few hours then biked back. Probably 2 or 2.5 hours biking in all - very tiring, because I'm very out of shape.

This was really an amazing little village. The peopl were so so nice to us and although it was totally the off season, they were very accomodating. On our last night there we went to the little restaurant that we'd been frequenting, and looked at the menu, and decided to leave. It was way over our budget and so we tried to sneak out (it was empty, so this was hard). The guy working, Manu, spotted us and we were like deer in headlights . So i just blurted out "mercado"... we are goign to the super market to get dinner... which would have been another freaking can of tuna or something. He kind of laughed and then asked if it was too expensive. Karoll said yes and so he said he'd make us dinner, pasta, for 11 euros including wine. We agreed and he made us a bolognese pasta and poured us wine and it was wonderful. We ate so much and he was soo happy . I told him that I"m Italian and don't ever order pasta because it's usually disappointing, but that this was impressive and we were so happy.

He ended up being an artist and showed me his work online and then we exchanged emails. He was really happy to meet us and his art is reallllllly awesome - I'm very happy.

We left Cabo de Gata in the morning and then caught a night bus from Almeria to Barcelona (WORST IDEA EVER< EW ).
I will post pictures of that in my next post, but may not write it too because I don't have time.


Malaga and Cabo de Gata

Here are a few photos from our last day in Malaga - we went for drinks our last night and then Rachel flew to the UK in the morning. Karoll and I spent the following day hanging out trying to rent a car then eventually getting a bus to Almeria. Here are pictures from Malaga, then I will write about Almeria and onwards.

Karoll making us sandwiches on the bench while waiting in the bus station haha

So this night Karoll and I caught a bus to Almeria and then eventually caught a bus to a small village called Cabo de Gata. We arrived there at 10 at night ( don't worry, I never would have done that on my own) - the bus driver was hesitant to leave us there but we found a hostel right away, thank goodness. The kind couple let us in and it turned out to be theeee nicest hostel we've stayed in yet. It was newly remodled and just clean, which was so nice. I slept the best I"d slept in probably a week. Our room was sunny and bright in the morning and the following two days were very relaxing and needed. I love small towns, of course.


Hi ALL.  i am on a computer at the hostel we are staying at in Nice, France. I am going to try and upload a few photos but may be hard as this computer is slow. Ill upload a few that correspond with my last post first.

This is Cordoba palace where Rachel and I met Karoll

Me in the square in Cordoba enjoying the tons of families and young people having Sunday drinks

Rachel and Karoll in the streets of Cordoba
Morning light on the rooftop balcony of our hostel in Cordoba
These are just a few pictures from the days I spent in Malaga and Cordoba - I'm going to post this now then move onto the next post so I don't lose this.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011


hello. been a while since my last post because i´ve been in transit since i left portugal. there will be no proper capitals or puncuation in this post because this keyboard is crazy and covered in a plastic sheet... and when you have naturally clammy hands a plastic sheet such as this can be quite the obstacle.

im sitting in an internet cafe in malaga, spain at the moment -next to my new travel partner karoll pinzon. she is a columbian girl i connected with on lonely planet and we met up 2 days ago. rachel abdallah met with me 3 days agao so she was here also to meet karoll. karoll has lived in australia for 10 years so she speaks great english.. and of course perfect spanish, haha very handy to have a translator since the only words rachel and i use are ´caliente- hot ... gracias .. munana - tomorrow ... haha and let me tell you, caliente does not always get the point across. i did use it to ask for hard boiled eggs the other day... i just pointed at the eggs and said caliente, which doesnt quite make sense, but i think the man figured it out. anyways, before i begin rambling...

i took a bus here, to malaga, on saturday and arrived at 8 am. i had little sleep... the 2 gravol i took seemed to have kicked in when i arrived and so i felt really groggy and out of it as i made my way from the bus station to the hotel. it was close and i was so happy to ditch my huge pack and to have a shower. i spent that day by myself in malaga. i roamed along the ocean to the old town and there i visited the picasso museum, which is the highlight of my trip thus far. i feel like quite the small town girl over here- at the museum my purse was scanned and my pocket knife, courtesy of cody, showed up crystal clear. they are like.. um miss is this a knife.. and im like, yup it is . im travelling alone and i like to have this knife with me. the man looked at me like i was a friggin criminal ,but the ladies just smiled.
the museum was made up of 12 parts... well 12 exhihbit rooms.. half on the bottom floor and half on the top. i made my way through the bottom then the top and it was absolutely  incredible.the works in this museum have a lot to do with exploration of motherhood, his relationship with his mother and the strange way that children physically see their mothers face and body. with sort of bended perception and exquisite memory.
i cannot remember titles right now, but at later on i will post pictures from the internet of pieces i saw. we, of course, were not allowed to take photos.
after my museum time i was tired so i roamed some more then had a beer on a patio and read my book. was back in my hotel by dark and waiting for rachel to arrive.

on my second day in spain rachel and i caught a bus early to go to cordoba, a few hours north. the bus took us through windy countryside and it was actually very nauseating. the farms are sooooo green and sooo beautiful, though, and i enjoyed it. cordoba seemed a bit scruffy at first but as we got into the old town, which is always the best area, we started to love it. we saw a ton of ruins - which im sure rachel can better explain to you, as she is a better tourist than i. after a few ruins or monuments i kind of fade off and begin to crave a beer hahaha. we did go to the cordoba mosque, which i´ve studied in eart history, and it was amazing. half is now a catholic cathedral, but the other half.. the courtyard.. is open to public and proved to be a very social community space. lots of sun lots of happy people. outside the mosque we had a drink and soaked up the sun in our tank tops....... everyone looked at us like we were crazy... id say they are the crazy ones in their down coats in plus 20 weather hahaha.

a man tried to get us to come stay at his pension, a room he boards out. obviously we jus tluaghed and said ya gracias .. then he sorta ran into us again later and started chatting and asked what part of canada we are from . we said bc.. and he said that his 2nd wife was from kalispell montana hahah crazzzzy. i was like well my boyfriends from there.. and he said he met his wife in the exact spot we were standing, the same place christop`her columbus met his second wife (at this point we are thinking he is a bit crazy).. hah abut then he told us he visited glacier park in the usa, that she went to uni in missoula, and spent time in helena. so he actually was legitimate and it was pretty weird that he would know those small places in montana.
we hadnt met karoll yet so part of me thought... oh man, this is probably karoll, and he looked on my facebook to see that i date a boy from montana and so he dug up all this bs information and is trying to reel us in hahaha..

but then, we met the real karoll , and it has turned out wonderfully. we stayed at a great little hostel that night and spent the whole day roaming around, sometimes in circles, and admiring the family oriented social lives of the spanish people. we had some drinks in this huge social square  where there were hundreds of people on a sunday. it was very different than canada, it was so nice. we spent hours looking for a place to eat, because all we wanted was veggies, but couldnt find anything that grea.t im surprised that its actaully a bit hard to find good food over here.. because there are sooooo many places to eat and the way they make things is just very different. im sooo sick of coleslaw prepared salad.. shredded lettuce is impossible to get onto your fork.

i apologize that this is such a long post, but somehow i cannot summarize these accounts.
we woke up to a sunny day yesterday and we enjoyed a coffee.. and a dry bun .. from the hostel. then we caught a bus back to malaga and arrived here to sun as well. we found a hostel, after some searching with our bags weighing us down, and settled in . then we explored. rachel and i went to the medditteranean, the beach was a long walk, but so worth it. karoll had to buy a new camera, so she did that.

we had an overpriced and under portioned lunch.. so then we went to a tiny, insanely busy grocery store and got sandwich stuff for dinner.. which will probably be our dinners for the next 3 nights. we went out for drinks last night at a place on the street with heaters, which was nice. people everywhere, of all ages, on a monday night at 10 oclock. its really crazy the social life here is soo public and strong.

another sleep in a cute hostel last night, with high ceilings and high wooden doors. rachel left this morning early to london and now karoll and i are here on the computers. we plan to make our way to barcelona by thursday.. we´d like to find a small seaside village to relax in for a few days.. then to barcelona for a few days, then to probably marseille, france for sunday to meet rachel and brenna again.

im having a very beautiful time and every time i put my ipod on it seems to highlight how really beautiful it is. music makes it better , thats for sure.
we are toting around all our sandwhich stuff and chocolate and fruit.. we just had breakfast in this little classy place and were the ruffians of the places.. knocking stuff over with our bags hahaha. pretty funny if you ask me.

well goodbye for now. i will try to post pictures when i get to another internet cafe.
im a little nervous to plug my camera into a random computer.

xo leahrose