- Madison Alewel
- Columbia, Missouri
- My traveling closet began halfway across the country three years ago when I left Las Vegas and started my freshman year at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Then it went halfway across the world for a semester abroad in Barcelona, Spain. Now it's back to Mizzou for a final year. I began this blog to detail my European adventures. Though I'm back in the states, the adventures continue.
Monday, April 23, 2012
Every April 23 the streets of Catalonia are adorned with makeshift bookstalls and rose stands commemorating the holiday of Sant Jordi. It's basically the Catalonia version of Valentine's Day.
Sunday, April 22, 2012
Mimosas and Huevos Rancheros
After sleeping half the day away (oops!), me, Sonja and our friend Maddy went out for brunch. We ate at an adorable restaurant called Picnic. The food was to die for. They even had blueberry pancakes - a rare find in Spain.
It's our final Sunday in Barcelona. The thought of leaving this city and all the amazing people I've met here is incredibly depressing. All I know is I'm going to take full advantage of these next 6 days and soak up as much of Barcelona I possibly can.
Saturday, April 21, 2012
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
What could possibly make Barcelona better?
...sharing it with my ADPi sisters of course!
For the past month, I've had a visitor every weekend and have absolutely loved it!
Diamonds en la playa.
Kelsey and I with our 5 Liters of sangria at Oveja Negra!
Breaking "curfew" with Mashinks!
Opium with Danielle!
Friday, April 13, 2012
I've seen plenty of Barca games at local bars but those experiences don't come close to watching the game live at Camp Nou. Lively fans filled the GIGANTIC stadium. The game was Barca vs. Granada. At this particular game I witnessed Messi, the leading scorer for Barca, break the team's record of most goals scored by a Barca player with an astonishing total of 234 goals. Pretttyyy amazing.
My host-brother was a sweetheart and let me borrow his Barca jersey and scarf to wear to the game.
Obviously, Barca won!
Monday, April 9, 2012
Please pardon my lack of posting this past month. Between traveling, school, friends and family visiting Barcelona and everything else, I've been a little busy. I'll try to make up for lost time with a few different posts tonight, starting with my St. Patty's Weekend in Dublin!
It started out a rough morning. You know it's bad when you're waking up to get ready as your roommate stumbles back home from the club. 4 am is far too early. I'm not sure how I functionally made it to the airport, especially since I didn't even have time to drink a café con leche.
However, it was all worth it once I finally arrived at the Dublin airport. They were certainly ready for the influx of tourists coming their way. The man handling the passport station took one glance at my passport and said, "We don't have any more room for Americans." His comrade joined the conversation and chipped in, "What, is it like a holiday or something?"
Oh Irish sarcasm... Don't worry though, I had plenty of American sarcasm to throw right back.
After sliding into a taxi, it took me a moment to register that the driver was sitting on the wrong side of the car AND speaking English to me. It was so bizarre. The driver talked a little too much for my taste. He asked me all sorts of complex, life questions like 'what's your best piece of advice.' I thoroughly struggled with his questions given the fact I was running on two hours of sleep. I was so thankful when we pulled into the driveway of the adorable Heatherview Bed and Breakfast. The B&B was located about 15 minutes outside Dublin in the quiet town of Malahide.
The hosts, Maura and Jim, greeted me at the door. I was the first guest to arrive for the weekend. They offered me a cup of coffee, which I graciously accepted. Before I knew it, I had a plate of pancakes topped with strawberries in front of me too! I thought I was in heaven.
As if their hospitality hadn't already exceeded my expectations, they offered me a ride into the center of Malahide so I could explore before the rest of my friends arrived. They dropped me off near the port and I began my solo adventure.
It was a bit rainy, but beautiful nonetheless. The small city center had a wonderful small-town feel.
After touring the port and shopping area, I began my walk back to the B&B, cutting through the forest to get a little taste of some Ireland countryside. I had high hopes of running into Gerard Butler, but alas that didn't happen.
I made it back to the B&B without getting lost. For those of you who know me best, this was quite an accomplishment. I climbed into bed to take a short siesta but as soon as I did, I heard Kayla and Monica's voices down the hall. The first part of my group had arrived. My sorority sisters, Marisa and Kelsey, were coming later that night. I abandoned the thought of getting any sleep during the weekend and we headed straight to Dublin.
The bus ride was an adventure because we didn't know when to get off! We took it as a good sign when EVERYONE began exiting the bus. Luckily for us, it was the right stop after all. We arrived in Dublin extremely hungry and lost with no idea where to go. We looked up at the first street we saw and discovered there was a place with everything we could possibly need: Food Safety Information Center. Hallelujah!
The Food Safety Information Center wasn't exactly what we had hoped, but there was a nice lady inside who pointed us in the right direction to finding our friend Veronica at her hostel. Once we met up with her, food was our main priority.
The Grand Central Pub had the most amazing food...and beer too!
With full bellies, we were content, real people again, and ready to start celebrating the holiday. We began hopping from pub to pub. My favorite was The Stag's Head.
I also enjoyed the random street music. Those Irish certainly know how to play.
I had to leave the festivities early and return back to the B&B to meet up with Marisa and Kelsey. Finding the bus back to Malahide was even trickier than knowing when to get off it. I think I walked the streets of Dublin for at least 45 minutes before miraculously stumbling upon the right bus stop.
Seeing Kelsey and Marisa was so incredibly wonderful. The previous lack of ADPi in my life was completely unacceptable. We decided to stay in Malahide for the evening and try out one of their local pubs. It ended up being a good decision because we witnessed this:
Oh Irish jigging...or at least an attempt at it...
We left the pub late and woke up early for the St. Patrick's Day Parade. Like I said earlier, there is no such thing as sleep in Dublin...at least not during St. Patty's Weekend. Thank goodness for Insomnia coffee!
We made sure we were parade ready with:
An irish flag
A walking stick
A make-shift flag to cheer on Marching Mizzou
And of course shamrock face paint
The streets were packed with people. It seemed like we waited forever and ever for the parade to begin, the anticipation of seeing Marching Mizzou rising every minute.
At last it began! And oh boy was it colorful!
I even spotted a leprechaun!
Of course, Marching Mizzou ended up being dead last. They really do save the best for last though. They were the biggest band in the entire parade! We went NUTS when we heard our fight song. See it for yourself:
We might have chased after them...singing along to the fight song...until the parade ended...but whatever... Can you blame a bunch of study abroad kids completely Mizzou-sick? Of course not!
After the parade, we headed to the Guinness Storehouse where I hoped to taste my very first sip of Guinness. How poetic of me to wait to be at the Guinness Storehouse - in Dublin - to try my first Guinness. :)
First sip of Guinness! To Arthur!
The Storehouse was gigantic. So much Guinness-ness on every level.
Once we got our fill of Guinness, we took a horse-drawn carriage back to the Temple Bar District where we carried out the rest of our night.
First diamonds in MONTHS!
The Temple Bar District was absolutely insane. The amount of people was unreal. Once we made it inside a pub, we could barely move. It was quite the experience.
Overall, I absolutely loved Dublin. I wish I could have spent more time there. You can bet me arse I'll make it back there someday soon!