Everyone who I meet who has stayed in hostels always says the same thing, you meet the weirdest people in hostels.
After last night, I now realise that Gabby and I are those weirdos. We over share, are over emotional and over enthusiastic.
Two Kiwis came to stay in my room here in Madrid and within ten minutes I had already told them far more than they ever wanted to know. Luckily this didn’t scare them off and the agreed to come for cans with us.
After a sniff of alcohol things just get worse, we spent a long time letting everyone know how we felt about saving the NHS and repealing the eighth. After the ball got rolling we just couldn’t shut up. Gabbs let everyone know about the time she woke up a Portuguese town by setting off a house alarm trying to leave some guys house, while I shared my weakness for tour guides on a power trip.
For us, it’s normal and natural to share every dirty and disastrous detail of our messy lives. Some people this freaks them out and maybe we come on to strong, I think this is why I am often on the receiving end of eye rolling and lots of side eye. Sometimes this can hurt my feelings, but it’s also natural I’m definitely not everyone’s cup of tea.
Maybe one day we’ll learn to use our filters but for now, I think I’ll continue sharing as honestly as I can.
I took a blabla car to Almeria from Granada with a man who sells fruit packaging. This meant we stopped at every fruit farm in between the two cities. Considering this is the main industry in the region, it was a lot. The journey took about three or four hours and was only supposed to take one or two. This was compensated by the breakfast and snacks that were provided for free-sies. He was really nice and brought me directly to the campsite. Old man number one was cool. A good start.
Old man number two was the bain of my life for a brief period. On Saturday I had to wait in Almeria all day for my blablacar so I decided to do all the touristy things. This meant I had to carry my back pack around with me (12kg!!!!!) I walked up to the Alcazaba, which is basically just a shitter version of the Alhambra. On my hike up to the castle I was stopping to take breaks in the shaded areas, this is where old man number two entered my life. He was the typical chatty brit living the retirement dream in Spain, giving out free life advice to anyone who will listen. In the space of no more than fifteen minutes he had told me to stay away from “the two pricks in life ; herion and dicks”, eat more vitamin c, stop being a vegetarian, give up alcohol and not to vaccinate my future children. He just kept appearing at every corner there was no escaping him for a while. Old man number two was the fucking worst.
Things picked back up with old man number three. He was my blabla car out of Almeria. With no common language and a five hour journey ahead of us, I decided to do the mature thing and put my head phones in and pretend to sleep. I woke up twice, once for him to buy me food and the second time for me to get out at my hostel. Old man number restored my faith.
The campsite I was staying on in Almeria was pretty quiet and I wasn’t expecting to make many friends there but these two cutie Spanish girls took me under their wing. The fed me for pretty much the full two days, drove me around when I needed and even gave me some new socks! Their English wasn’t that good but they tried so hard to make me feel welcome and were so generous with everything they had. This trip is definitely showing me how kind and willing to help people are.
My third destination set the bar very high. I’m not sure if anywhere else will be able to live up to the last five days in Granada. The combination of the city, hostel and beautiful people I met all contributed to some of the best moments of my life. I stayed in Granada Inn backpackers hostel, it’s been the cheapest and best place I’ve stayed so far, dorm rooms started from only nine euro a night and it was super clean, comfortable and really easy to make friends there.
I did a walking tour of the city with this company for free on Monday which lasted about two and a half hours and showed you around the old parts of the city. This was super cool not just because it was free but because you got to see so much and then could choose to go back and revisit stuff it you wanted more detail later on. They also have tours in the evenings but I skipped this to watch sunset and moonrise on the walls of the old city.
About ten of us walked up to the Sacremonte area and into the hills where the gypsys live and to the ruins of the old city walls. To get to the top of the wall it was necessary to climb the old wall, something that I did not excel at. At one point my hands and feet were so sweaty with fear I thought I was going to cause a mudslide and slip down the mountain to a certain death. Surprisingly I didn’t and when we got to the top it was so worth it. We had views of the whole city and surrounding mountains all to ourselves. It felt like an episode of Skins (minus the drugs) it was so perfect. I’ve never sat and watched the moon rise before and this was the perfect first time.
Basically everything in the city is so pure and exciting that I never wanted to leave ever…
P.S Photo creds to Gabby Rogers xxxx
After leaving Cologne in a very hungover state from our WG party the night before from which I am still finding glitter in every crevice of my body. Turning up to the airport hungover, covered in glitter and wearing a glorified tracksuit and Birkenstock’s doesn’t bring you the best of looks from other passengers. I spent pretty much the whole time waiting at my gate on the phone to my best friend through head phones meaning I was speaking so so loudly. I only realised this when I loudly declared that someone was a “fucking dick-tip” and many horrified German parents turned around to glare at me.
When I finally got to Jerez airport after a thirty minute delay and four failed landing attempts I realised that Jerez airport IS THE WORST. Because of my flight delay I missed the only public transport out of there. This meant that I had to pay twenty euro to get to the next closest train station (Jerez) where I could get the train to El Puerto de Santa Maria where I’m planning on staying for a week with my friend (this only cost two euro). As soon as I got here we headed to the beach for an evening swim. Looking out over the bay to Cadiz was stunning and it was a really nice start to my trip. I was planning on going out last night but I was suffering badly from the night before and I just passed out on the sofa.
El Puerto de Santa Maria is a small city across the bay from Cadiz from here you can get a ferry to Cadiz for three euro which takes about 45 minutes there’s also a train but I think it’s a bit more expensive and also longer. Its quite a quiet city with not loads to do. The architecture is really beautiful in the old part. The (still working) bull ring is definitely one the highlights, there are about three or four monuments of bulls and “matadores” which is pretty cool. As well as that there is the castle and the city hall. Which are nice to sit outside in the shade and people watch for awhile. Being on such a small budget is sucky some of the time because I can’t afford to pay into museums etc but it is still nice to just go out and wander from place to place to get a feel for the culture there.
My friend lives here in a flat which her employer pays for so I can stay here for free which is fab because already I way out spent my budget yesterday between getting to Dusseldorf airport, food at the airport and then the taxi here. That just means the rest of the days this week I’ll have to lessen my daily budget from fifteen euro to ten euro :(. Budgeting is definitely my biggest issue especially when transport and accommodation is so expensive. As well as that, yesterday the thirty minute or so walk from the train station to my friends flat with my 11kg back pack really hurt my shoulder so I either have to lose some stuff or find a better way to pack it so that it doesn’t hurt so bad.