[14/01/22~02/10 (D+893) Spain/(to French border)]
I like Spain that I will put Spain on my favorite country’s list. I wish I have more time to see this country.
I arrive in a host house so late that I feel sorry. But I realize in Spain people have dinner around 9 pm. So, I am okay? Maybe?
My host name is Alba who is from Spain and Gerard who is from Switzerland. While Alba studied in Switzerland, she met him. Now they live in Spain. They speak French when they talk to each other.
I cough so hard in the night that it is hard to talk. But it is so fun to talk to them.
Around finishing dinner, she asks me “Do you know which meat you eat just now?”
“Of course, I know! It is a chicken!”
“What? Isn’t it chicken? Oh, you guys eat a duck like Korean?”
“No, it is not a duck”
“I don’t think it is a pig or cow?”
“No, it is not.”
“Oh………………….You…… What did you do to me?? Hahahaha..”
“I asked you at first ‘What kind of food do you like’. And you answered ‘I love any of food I can eat. I just love eating anything.”
“Oh, Yes, I said that! Hahahaha. Which meat is it????????? Oh!! Let me guess. I love finding answer! Let me guess… DOG???????????”
“NO, we don’t eat a dog.”
“What is this? It is so tasty……. Is it………..Ra…….Ra…….Rabbit?????????”
“Oh!!!!!!!! AWESOME!! I wanted to eat this one when I heard Spanish people eat Rabbit. It is so delicious!!”
So funny night ever! Hahahahaha…
At the next morning, here interesting breakfast is. She can’t eat wheat and daily food that she likes to have miso soup for breakfast. I guess she will love to visit Korea. In Korea people don’t eat butter, cheese and bread often. We eat rice and many delicious foods which is not included of daily food. Oh, but there will be one hard thing for her if she comes to Korea. There is no rabbit meat in Korea. Hahaha..
Yesterday night, I could not understand why they live on the top of mount where I had to push my bicycle so hard. Now everything is clear that I can find the reason they live here. The view is so beautiful.
It is five or six-story, and there is a cable. But, yesterday the cable didn’t work that we had to carry all of my stuff together. There is no roof that it is borken often.
I supposed to stay one night, but they say I should stay more nights. Why not? haha. They live 30 km far from Barcelona. 40 minutes to the city by train.
Alba has had two degrees and now she is getting one more degree. She needs to prepare exam that I hang around the city with Gerard. I was wondering that I asked to her “If you study only one subject for this amount of time you have spent, you can have Ph.D.”. “Yes it is true. But I like to know different things.”, “But, when you start learning the other thing, you might forget other subject you studied before.”, “Yeah maybe I will forget some small things. But all I study is kind of being connected that I think it is worth to study many different things. I love studying.”, “That’s good thing!”
I am invited at Spanish restaurant. Wow. I wish Alba comes together. This is made of cow’s blood. In Korea, we also use cow’s blood for the food. But it was not my favorite. But this time, it is so delicious.
I wanted to try rabbit and one more thing, Snail!!! I heard French snail is bigger, and tasty is different.
Oh man this is so good. Love it.
Eat with a toothpick. Doesn’t it look tasty?
I can’t remember the name of food. This is mixed with the sea stuff and the mount stuff.
At the end, so sweet honey with cheese. Lovely lunch!!!!
It is said that this is the center of Barcelona.
We just keep walking with chatting around the city. It is so lovely that nobody tries to talk to me. So, I can concentrate on the talking and the street. Some people says European is too cold and unkind. They think only real people is poor people in third country. I have different opinion that all we human is the same. I think just European likes to have the distance. And I love to have the distance as well. I love people, but sometimes I need quiet moment. But it was not possible in Africa and Latin America to be alone. So far, I enjoy Europe so much. It is totally less stress with people as a solo woman cyclist here.
Gaudi built this house, Casa Batllo, in 1877. I am just shocked that the house we live is too awful. Why we live too simple house? Why not like this?
I bought another same tire in the city.
I just asked that if she wants to have old my tire which was survived in Americas and Africa over two years. (I usually don’t throw away old stuff. But I can’t keep it during cycling around the world)
She says “Yes” while he says something to her in French. Maybe he will throw it away when she is not at home. hahahahaha.
It is so much fun to stay with them that I keep laughing and smiling. I love people who has a big smile.
I persuade that they should cycle with me on their summer vacation. Hope see them again.
I’ve contacted with one guy from Spain since Africa. He said he was following my journal for a while and he wanted to invite me. He lives 50 km far from northern Barcelona. Today I try to go to his house, but it is the most difficult day. There is no such a secondary road, but only big highway. I have to find every small road. Too difficult to find only one way.
I try to cycle really hard not to be in the night. I am only off from the bike when I go to the toilet. I even eat bread on a bicycle. But the road is so complicated that I have to keep looking at iPhone’s map. Around the sunset, I sent him a message that I will arrive a bit late. Just after 20 minutes, he shows up without noticing.
Thanks to him, I don’t need to get nervous. To cycle with a local guy in the night is totally much easier.
In Barcelona, a small bike like that is very popular.
We go to a bar, but I cough too much to keep talking. The day time is okay, but I cough too much in the night these days. It has happened almost over week. When I will stop coughing?
This is french food that dice potatoes with mayonnaise.
I tried to order it in Egypt, but Egypt was kind of sanction country that I could not use my credit card. As soon as I arrived in Madrid, I ordered a new kick stand. It is the same brand I used to have before. It is the best kickstand ever in the world, so far in my experience. It is $20, but the shipping is $10. I hope I can use it over two years more.
It is miracle that I stop coughing at the next day. Actually for last week, so kindly many hosts gave me medicine, candy, syrup, and tea to make me to stop cough. But any of them didn’t work out. But now it just stops. I don’t know why it happens. I remember that to cough too much in the night than in the day had happened sometimes since I was child. Some people says it is kind of asthma, mental problem which wants to keep coughing (?), or too dry air … I don’t know but anyway now I can talk with people in the night without problem! Yeah!
I try to post delayed journals while I stay at his house.
Spanish love Olive.
Another typical Spanish food about eggs
Sea palleas. I have too many delayed journals that I stay at his house for two weeks. I can stay only three months at Schengen area, and I spend two weeks of three months for journals at one place.
I feel a bit pity that I spend too much time for journals. So, I go out. This is another Gaudi house, but it is under construction.
Some art stuffs. It is really a big shop.
It is the most famous building of Gaudi. It has been built since 1883. It has not finished even when he died in 1926. Still they are working to finish it.
This building is new. Their plan is to finish construction in 2026. We have to wait 13 years more to see done. They get money from the entrance fee and a big company’s sponsor and build. Entrance fee is 15 € (21$).
Sagrada Familia is so popular that we have to wait 30 minutes to buy the ticket. I feel like I am entering Disneyland because it takes time to buy the ticket haha.
15 € is worth for the entrance that the inside of building is amazing. It seems there is two kinds of architecture that Gaudi or not.
Now I understand why people call Gaudi genius.
Everything is detail. This is real architect.
The reflection is so beautiful.
It is not allowed to go to the basement.
Gaudi was affected by the nature that he followed the nature’s system.
It is very popular drinking in Spain which is called Sangria. Sangria is mixed with fruits, vodka and red wine. It is so sweet that people should drink slowly. If people drink fast as if drinking juice, next day will turn to hell with the hangover.
It is the train station in Barcelona that it looks similar to London’s one.
My host name is Vicotry who studied the law and became the lawyer. But he was tired of his job, so he changed his career and did many other things. He went to Mayer election one time. Now he is writing a speech in the Catalan parliament. Thanks to him, I can visit the parliament. It is the secret place for parties that the members of different party draw curtain and have the talk secretly. I am a bit wondering that why at the wall?? I don’t think there would be sound isolation.
Hey Victor, pass your script, I will have a speech! Haha.
At the outside there is a park.
He keeps making bubbles. It doesn’t look artistic thing. Anyway the way to make money is interesting.
The park is very quiet.
Before getting dark, we go to a big market. Now it is not surprising anymore to see pig’s leg that I am used to see it.
Just walking around
It is said Spain has worse economy that unemployed is 20% which is too much. But at the market there are many tourists that it looks busy.
WARNING : The next picture is too horror.
It is goat’s head. There are many immigrants and usually they bring their culture things as well.
I got the contact from Alba. She has Canadian friend whom they have met when they toured in India comes to Barcelona. She invites me to hiking together. So I take the subway to meet them.
It is interesting that the building next to Gaudi’s building is too close. Why they build too closely?
Their car arrive around 9 pm and I greet them.
I asked Alba yesterday via Whatsapp
“Is hiking difficult?”
“No, it is easy.”
At the beginning it was easy.
But now it goes difficult that I have to use two legs and hands.
– “Yesterday you told me it would be easy?”
“Yes, I did. Because if I tell you truth, you will not come. hahahahaha”
-“Oh!!!You are genius that you do know me!!!!!! Awesome. hahahaha ”
But actually I do enjoy so much hiking together. It is my first time to clime like this way, which makes me so interesting.
At the top, air is fresh, and I can see Pyrenees which I have to pass to cross the French border.
Many mystery rocks
There are a few hermitages, and we take the rest at one of them. One local guy shows how to drink wine in Spain. I try it, but it doesn’t go well. Haha. I think it is the way to get drunken easily.
I am so happy today to see Alba and Gerald again. They are just awesome guys. Also it is good to meet their Canadian friends who have cycled for a while. (2lovecycling.com)
One of hermitage
At the inside it is nature things. I would like to stay here, but I am afraid as a solo woman staying in the dark alone.
At the downhill I have a little pain with my knees. It happens many times that I have some pain with knees often when I go down on the hiking.
It was another funny happy lovely day. When I said something, Alba always laughed so much that I felt like becoming awesome cool comedian. I love the people laughing!! Haha.
When I can see them again? They invite me at the camping for four nights at this week, but I am too busy for writing journals. Oh.. writing journal is more important than traveling?
There are garbage bin at the inside of train. But it seems some people don’t care about it.
The most interesting thing is there is a toilet at the inside of subway. It is clean and everything works fine.
But one of disappoint things is too many graffiti at every public place. It is not beautiful, but too ugly. They who ruined public place must be arrested and charged at least 6 months in jail. Then nobody will destroy public place with stupid ugly thing.
I have something to be done that I come to Barcelona at Monday with the subway. I empty all luggage to the house and full panniers with only clothes to make look bigger. What is the thing I want to do? I am doing some project which is to take the video about people dancing all around the world. I had sent so many messages to make people join. But I didn’t get any answer. I think people are too shy and tiresome to do together.
When I saw the video about like this, it was so funny. But I realize to make that kind of video is really tired thing, because nobody answered my request. But I don’t like to give up that I want to try whatever first.
I go to the park where I’ve been with Victor next to Parliament. There are students that I ask the teacher first. Teacher says I should talk to students. So, I try to introduce myself to them, but suddenly teacher interrupts and says to them “She wants to dance with you guys” And then they scream out with enjoyment. Oh…. Easy!!!!
So here I got one video more.
I feel good that I want to try again at the beach. It is winter that there are not many people. I guess in the summer here are full of people.
I think I should not ask one by one, because people will tire to wait and be gone while I gather people. I need a big group.
It is lucky that I find a tourist group. I ask a guide to join dance. But guide says it would be not easy because there are too serious.
-“Where are they from?”
“They are SWISS”
But actually they dance well. Haha
So far I have one video in Egypt, three videos in Spain. I will upload videos after one year!
Sagrada familia is now familiar to me that it is at the center of city.
One of interest thing in the city is there is a little tiny small gas station.
It is a study which is next to Victor’s room. Actually the place I write journals is so nice and quiet. I love this place, because there are many books that I feel like I am in the library.
Over two weeks Victory who is on the left at the picture hosts me very well. The right is his parents. He is really amazing guy that he cycled 23,000 km (14,375 mi) over 9 months from Spain to Bangkok when he was 37 years old (two years ago). When he was 33?34?35 years old, he cycled 14,000 km (8,750 mi) for four months in the U.S. Just amazing!
I have cycled 23,000 km over two years and four months. I know the way to travel is different, but anyhow I admire him.
My handlebar bag is totally worn out. I repaired in Sudan, but now I can’t repair it anymore. I bought it at Warmart in the U.S for $16. I used it really very well over two years. If I used plastic bag for the rain, it became water proof. But I can’t find any cheap bag like this here. I should consider the future that I will cycle for a long time that I need a nice handlebar bag.
At the day I leave in the morning I take the train to Barcelona to buy the bag. The way to subway we see the police. It is too sad that one guy on a bicycle got hit and dead in early dark morning. Another horrible thing is the driver run away. To cycle is really risky sometimes that there are too many people driving crazily.
I go to the shop which I researched last night, but there is no yellow bag. Anyway it thanks that at least there is a red bag.
It is so fantastic interesting thing that Ortlieb use wire to fix bag to handlebar. (When I opened the box and saw wire, I was wondering what is for. And I figured out when I read a description.) German guys are so brilliant sometimes.
MY RED handlebar bag!! It is a new style which is called classic 6. The price is 80 € ($112). There are four magnetics at the top that it is very easy to open and close a bag. But the problem is it is empty bag that I must put some thick things to protect a camera.
Actually the bag is not practical; there is no any small space that it is very hard to put many things on the bag. It could be messed up easily. And it is too tall bag, and it is not wide. They should not think only waterproof, but also PRACTICAL!!!! I am a bit worried that it is waste of money to buy this unpractical bag. Anyway I already bought it with expensive cost that I must use well. Hahaha.
My kickstand is working well. Thanks to Victor that I could check my bike at the bicycle shop. He had experience of the world trip with a bike that he tries to help me with many ways.
After buying a bag in Barcelona I come back to the town with a subway and get ready to cycle again after 1 pm.
It is flat that I cycle fast and reach to his friend house.
This bridge is built by the architect who built the Eiffel tower.
Since a few years ago, here have been many tourists. The reason is only one that Ryanair which is budget airline comes to this town. If people booked the ticket on Ryanair in advance, it would cost only 40~ 50 € in all Europe.
The name of the bridge is Pont de ferro.
Yesterday night it was full of people. But in the morning it is empty.
The morning is totally different from the night.
It is really good that I can cycle easily because there are not many people.
I am close to the border.
Is that the border? I can’t see the flag. It is Schengen area that I can’t feel I am crossing the border.
It is time to leave Spain which is my first country in Europe. As like always first one is the best one, Spain will remain very good country as if I like Mexico in Latin America.
Here is my first impression about Spain after visiting
– I see so many nice expensive cars. Maybe it is my misunderstanding because I just came from Africa?
– People try to save electricity really hard. When I go to the public washroom, always it is dark that I must turn on the right or push the button for automatic light.
– People usually don’t honk horn. But when I make some mistake, they are impatient and honk horn.
– People have dinner at late around 9 pm.
– They eat the cheese for the desert (There was a cheese on the table during dinner. I didn’t know it was for the desert that I just ate that with my meals. Sorry… hahaha. )
– Many people can’t speak English well. (I could speak a little bit of Spanish that it was okay for me.)
– I can drink tap water in Madrid, but in other city it is not recommended.
– I buy 2L water for 0.27 € (40 cents) in a big market
– I can buy food such as cheese and bread so cheaply in the big market I can find every place.
– But other things are so expensive.
– The south is for farming and the north is for the factory. So, northern Spain is richer than Southern Spain.
– Most of people blind their window all the time.
– The elevator is too small to fit my bicycle that I have to put it vertically.
– Actually they don’t need recycle hard because there is a big factory which recycles with a big blow machine.
– Around Barcelona this region is called Cataluna where people speak different language, Catalan. They want to become independent, because they are totally different tribe. But Spain never let them go, because this area is so good for money. I think Tibet=Quebec=Cataluna .. I am sure there are many tribes like this.
– People loves pigs. Jerked meet.
– People loves pigs and cheese, but they are thin.
– The government is corrupted like Korean one
– The rate of unemployed is too high such as 20% for a long time.
– People are enough generous and kind.
– There is no bicycle road. I got lost so many times to avoid a big main high way. Even the secondary road is too complicated to be found.
– There are lots of roundabouts.
– All cars wait the traffic sign, but when they come out of cars, they don’t wait the traffic sign. At the most of time, I saw that people just cross at the red light. (One of friends paid 100$ for penalty, but he still walks on the red light.)
– Although it is winter, at the day it is really good to cycle. But in the night it is too cold to sleep in a tent.
Did I write many negative things than positive things? Nah..
Anyway Spain was really nice country to me that I loved meeting Spanish guys. I had so much fun ever with people!
Days in Spain=42Days
Distance of cycling in Spain= 1,264.39 km (790.24 mi)
Cities I stayed in Spain= 15 Cities
Madrid, El Alto, Villatobas, Los Llanos, Albacete, Almansa, Algemesi, Valencia, Castello, Alcala de Xivert, Tortosa, Reus, Castelldefels, Palautordera, Girona
Expenditure in Spain = €432 = $ 606 (1.4$=1 Euro)
Handlebar bag $112 (€80), Tire $52 (€37), Clothe gears $85.4 (€60), Kickstand $ 28, Letters $60 (€42), Sim card $35 (€25)