Sunday, April 19, 2009

Granada: Where the Old Man Tapped my Breast and the Drunken Men Serenaded Us...

The first day in Granada totally sucked. We got in relatively early because the city is only a hop skip and a jump away from Malaga. The bus station was in a really weird out of the way neighborhood and it turns out our hostel was, too. We spent almost 13 euros on a taxi just to get to the hostel, which turned out to be a total bust despite its great rating on the hostel booking website. It wasn't really much of a hostel, either--despite some sad-looking saggy couches in the "lounge"--it was much more like a budget hotel. While we were checking in, a woman was checking out a few days early because her room was small, damp, and cold. Bad chat. When we walked into our room, there were three single beds and one double bed actually touching sides, a small table, and a closet that was blocked by the fourth bed. The bathroom door didn't shut at all, the showerhead sprayed water over the side of the bathtub, and there was no toilet paper in the room. Ashley also pointed out that the hotel looked a lot like some of the shots of the hotel in the Shining, so we spent two days croaking "redrum" and expecting two little girls to be standing at the end of the hall asking to play with us. I was kind of glad that the bathroom door didn't shut.

We walked around Granada a bit that first day, ate some crappy pasta in a crappy restaurant, saw the center, and generally felt cold, grumpy, and ridiculously skint. We walked grudgingly back to the "hostel" and were asleep by nine.

The next day, we woke really early to visit the Alhambra, which was absolutely amazing. Kili and I realized that the palaces were used in some of the shots for the movie The Fall. The architecture and intricacy of the designs were stunning, and the gardens were beautiful, too. SO much green, especially after living in dry Perps for so many months. It reminded me of Washington a bit, actually. I'll post pictures (not from my camera, obv, but stolen photos from the other girls) soon, hopefully. Afterwards, we went back to the hostel and had a nap. Too much excitement.

In the afternoon, we headed back into the center, and found a street lined with tapas restaurants that were filled with locals. There were men dressed in cow suits and groups of girls wearing silly hats. We later found out that everyone from Barcelona holds their bachelor and bachelorette parties in Granada--we must have seen about ten different groups of drunken people (one group of which saw Kili, Ashley, and I sitting on a bench, serenaded us with a Spanish song, jumped up and down, and then told us we were the most beautiful things that they had ever seen and thanked us for our presence in broken English before wandering away singing). The tapas was amazing, but the drunk old man who tapped my breast was not.

After tapas, we wandered around some shops for a while, bought some gifts for people back home, and started to watch a street performer in a square just outside of one of the city's cathedrals. He reminded me of Johnny Depp's character from the movie Benny and Joon. He was actually hilarious--the funniest street performer I have ever, ever seen. His performance was kind of Charlie Chaplin-esque, playing off the passers-by, and creating a movie scenario from some of the spectators.

After the performance, we walked back towards the hostel, and ate dinner at one of the most authentic Mexican restaurants that I think exists in Europe. I was the happiest. 100% happy. Mexican food! I never thought I would have it for my whole time here. I would say I am speechless, but clearly I am not.

I am back in Perps now, getting ready for the last two weeks of work. Less than 24 hours of teaching those brats left.

1 comment:

Chelsea said...

Thank you for this. All of it. I love you.