Beach, Booze, and… Breathing?

This post is dedicated to Joe, the man who got 0 hours of sleep the night before a job interview because he was making sure I didn’t die.

Oh that’s an auspicious beginning, right? But more on that later.

Beach!
Beach! Photo by Tessa Schreiner

Tessa and I decided that our respective Spanish cities were not providing us with enough beach. So, after careful consideration (looking for the cheapest Ryanair flight) we decided to take a weekend jump over to Mallorca! Continue reading

Trapped in Italy! Or, How Fixing my Mistake Cost me €200

Only I could turn what should have been a 12-hour trip into a 27-hours of sleep deprived chaos.
Wait, what? Are you confused?
Okay, it has been a while. So sorry. Between the soon-to-be-recounted adventures and my attempts to return to the responsibilities of daily life, blogging has sort of fallen by the wayside. Anyhow, I have a lot to recap, so in true Jeannette fashion I’m going to go in reverse and start at the end of my Semana Santa/Spring Break trip…
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Entroido! Carnival Celebrations in Laza, Ourense

Laza

Carnival is my favorite Spanish holiday! It’s the wonderful combination of Halloween’s costumes and Spanish fiesta hours (as in, sunset to sunrise). This year, my friends and I went adventuring off to the southeastern corner of rural Galicia to enjoy the oldest Carnival in the penninsula: Laza’s Entroido.
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Public Buses in Tiny Spanish Villages

Today my airheadedness cost me 4€ bus fare, woo! On the plus side, it also got me another glimpse of Galician country life. It all began when I forgot that my usual ride home from my work is out sick. Yeah…I didn’t remember until I was standing in the parking lot like an idiot. And of course, on Monday absolutely no one else was going back to Santiago. So Jeannette, time to find out if there’s bus!
Because this is Spain, there was no schedule online. Goody, I thought. However I was pretty sure that there was a bus around 2:30. So off I waltzed through the shockingly sunny fields of Cruces to test my luck. Now, Cruces has a population of about 2,000 people and no bus station, nor marked bus stop. Lucky for me, I vaguely remembered on what street the bus stopped (1/4 odds aren’t bad either). And then a bus rolled up!
I headed over and was promptly stopped by a friendly Galician man informing me that the Santiago bus would be by in 5 minutes, that I could buy my ticket from the driver, and that I was on the wrong side of the street. All this before I’d said a word! He then asked who I was–because any unfamiliar face in Cruces is newsworthy, least of all one attached to an American accent. Which led to a 10 minute conversation about my job and life in Galicia.
The bus itself takes about 75 minutes to get to Santiago–mostly because the driver will stop for anyone, anywhere. Yeah, I watch one man step right out of a bar and wave at the bus–which resulted in the driver slamming on the brakes in the middle of the road.
Most people seem to wait at an obvious stop/slow down point. Also, I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who the driver didn’t know by name. Actually, I’m pretty sure I’m the only one whose parents, grandparents, and total history was not known by the driver.

New Year’s in Budapest

XmasEastEurope 39
After playing in the snow in Austria, I headed off to Eastern Europe right before New Year’s Eve. Specifically, I spent a day in a car to get from Munich to Budapest (roadtrip!) Budapest is cool, and also freezing cold! I do not appreciate subzero temperatures on my vacations. Luckily, the Hungarians are also big fans of mulled wine and something called palinka (more on that later). During my almost-week there, I had several adventures and saw some requisite touristy things. Like…