So we've had our last proper day in San Sebastian - we leave on the long journey down to Córdoba tomorrow morning!
We've had an amazing time here... it's such a beautiful place and there is so much to do. The people are also really nice (we'll forget about that dickhead old man yesterday) and our hostel has been perfect.
But the good thing about how we're going about this trip - spending a short time in lots of places - is that we're spending just enough time to truly appreciate these places without becoming so attached that we never want to leave.
There is always something to look forward to and an element of the unknown, which is great because that means that we have very few preconceptions, allowing us to be surprised all the time. And we have certainly had more than a few suprises here. So bring on Córdoba - we booked the hostel just now, and we are really looking forward to it.
But for now, let's look back on today...
We had a very late start today.
As I said in the last blog post, I hadn't had much sleep at all and then we did sooooooooo much shit yesterday, so I was very very tired. I think I went to sleep at about 3am, having set the alarm for 9.30am so that I could get a decent six and a half hours.
Sam woke me up at 11.30am.
I looked at my iPod and it said that the alarm had gone off. The volume was on full, so I honestly don't know what happened. Maybe I just slept through it going off for an hour or something, I wouldn't be surprised considering how tired I was. But I needed the sleep so it wasn't a very big deal, and we have daylight here until like 9.30pm so we still had a lot of time.
While Sam was in the shower, I went out to get some shaving foam, which we agreed we'd get here in Spain rather than bring it with us. I then had a shower and a shave when I got back, which was nice - the bathrooms are great here. And then we packed our bag and left the hostel to look at some of the local shops.
We had a nice walk around the Old Town, looked in a few of the shops but didn't buy anything. We found a small shop selling food and stuff, and as we hadn't had breakfast, we bought a massive baguette and a couple of bananas, which we sat down and ate on a nearby bench. Cue flurry of sparrows and pidgeons fighting over our crumbs!
We then saw this nice-looking shop selling natural yoghurt with a variety of toppings, and given that it was actually heathy food for a change, and looked fucking amazing, we went in. I ordered a medium yoghurt with raspberry and strawberry; Sam ordered a large one with cherry and chocolate.
I fucking love this photo!
After we left the yoghurt shop, we saw an underground market, so thought we'd take a look.
And to our surprise, we found a massive LIDL store down there!! We'd seen someone with a LIDL bag earlier but we had no idea where it could be.
We'd been looking for a supermarket since we'd been in San Sebastian so that we could stock up on cheap food, but had had no luck, so while we were in LIDL we thought we'd get a few things. We got some peaches, a large pack of individually-wrapped sweet waffles (they are SO FUCKING GOOD) and a box of high-fibre cookies which were quite cheap and also filling, meaning we wouldn't have to eat as much, and therefore spend less.
After we got this stuff, our bag was quite full, and we'd looked around most of the shops, so we decided we'd move on to do the other stuff we wanted to do. We took the food back to the hostel, had a sweet waffle and a peach, and then left to admire some of the local architecture and other stuff.
Here are a few photos we took:
We also wanted to take some pictures of the bridges crossing the river estuary and the Kursaal building, which we passed yesterday but didn't have time to take photos of as we were spazzing out trying to find wireless internet and our hostel. Here they are:
The Kursaal building and the bay:
Me on the Zurriola bridge:
And more of the Kursaal building:
After visiting here, we decided that we'd go and visit the Cristina Enea park. I though it would be a good idea seeing as the park we went to in Madrid was one of the best experiences we had there. Here are some pictures we took on the way to the park:
We then entered the park on this bridge:
The park was beautiful. There lots of different types of plants and trees, and it was very well-kept.
We saw a load of children coming out of their primary school with their parents, and most of them headed straight for the park - it is clearly very popular.
Also located within the park was the 'Centro de Recursos Medioambientales' (Environmental Resources Centre), which was a consisted of two lovely buildings:
However, nothing prepared us for what we saw next.
Just wandering around freely, along with a few ducks.
They came up quite close to us. Here are some pictures:
That was pretty incredible. Annoyingly, though, some spazzy kid kept running up to the peacocks, chasing and squirting them with a water pistol! And when one of the peacocks was doing its really loud call, I heard a kid say "¡Cállate!", literally "Shut up!". So as I was saying, they clearly truly appreciate and care for these wonderful birds.
We then walked through the rest of the park before heading to the bridge which would take us to the city's cathedral, the next place we wanted to visit.
When we got to the cathedral, this is what we saw:
Luckily, we didn't have to pay to get in! Here are the pictures we took:
We returned to the hostel after this to eat more of our shit (wait, that sounds wrong). We had another waffle... we've both had 3 of those today, so that shows how varied our diet is.
Our plan was then to climb up the headland nearest to our hotel - the one I didn't climb yesterday - which had a statue of Jesus on top which we'd seen from ground level. We knew the view would be amazing and we hoped we'd come across more interesting stuff on the way up, so this is what we did.
I'm going to have to make this descrption quite brief...it's getting late! So I'll do it mainly with pictures and a few words:
We found a small building a little way up... it looked like it used to be a prison!
On the way up...
The Jesus statue!
More structures very close to the top of the headland:
We'd seen people standing by the Jesus statue from the ground, so we tried to look for a way up. However, the way up was locked - it wasn't open for whatever reason.
Hang on a minute.
Where have I seen this before?
Oh yeah, yesterday, when I also climbed up a fucking massive hill only to be denied the satisfaction of reaching the pinnacle.
I swear they're doing this on purpose. Sam said it was probably that same fucking old man who closed the way up to the top on this headland.
I wouldn't be surprised.
However, it didn't look like the view would have been an awful lot better from the top - there were trees in the way, hence why I haven't put any pictures from this highest point in the blog. Instead, there were some amazing viewpoints further down:
We eventually got back down to ground level, where there was this sculpture:
We then walked back towards the Old Town through the harbour:
We then came back to the hostel, and that more or less takes us up to where we are now!
So overall, our time in San Sebastian has been fantastic, and I hope I've conveyed a lot of what we've experienced through this blog. This post has been involved a lot of description, mainly because I really need to get to bed soon as our train leaves at 8.42am in the morning!
I would have started the post earlier but we had quite a long skyping session. It's really nice to be able to communicate with people at home. I also got sidetracked as one of my favourite musicians Amanda Palmer just released a new song to the public, which I've been listening to on repeat while writing this blog. I think I'll share it with you:
It's a beautiful song. It was inspired by her seeing a trout being gutted, but its heart was still beating. Very symbolic.
Not good for writing blogs though, because it makes me want to cry! It makes me think of someone back home. She wrote it when she was on tour, and being far away from home I can really see where she was coming from.
So have a listen if you like, put yourself in my shoes and see what you can see in it.
Meanwhile, I must head off. But I will post again from Córdoba tomorrow if all goes well! Let's hope our alarms actually wake us up in the morning...
Jack - 29/5/12 - 03:55