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Una Torpe en Bilbao

January 30, 2012

Bilbao skyline

Last weekend I got to visit my friends Laura and Pedro in Bilbao. Both had stayed with my family for 3 weeks the two summers before and now I had the opportunity to visit them in their hometown and meet their family.

Let me just start off by saying how nice of a trip it was. Their family was so generous and made me feel right at home. It was so nice to be in a family environment (although it did make me miss my own). I feel so blessed to know people who are (relatively) close by who will be there for me if I need anything.

One of the greatest things that I enjoyed about this weekend in Bilbao was getting to practice my Spanish. Since I was living with their family, I was forced to speak it and listen to it at all times. I had to do a lot of “¿Cómo?, Lo siento no entiendo, ¿Otra vez?,” and “¿Qué signifca…?”‘s, but in the end I could already feel my Spanish improving even though I was only there for 2 & a half days.

My word of the weekend that I learned was torpe. ¿Qué significa torpe? you might ask. I’ll give you some scenarios… let’s see if you can figure it out: “Oh look, Jessica just tripped.” — “Torpe.” “Oh no, I just dropped my fork.” — “Torpe.” “Owwwww!!” — “Torpe.”

Think you got the answer? Yeah, torpe = clumsy. So I’ll admit it —  Soy una torpe. What can you do?

Besides tripping, bumping into things, and dropping stuff (what’s new?), the weekend was extremely relaxing while at the same time being super jam-packed with fun and exciting adventures. Here are some pictures of what we did and what we saw.

Me, Laura, & Pedro at the Guggenheim Museum. The exhibits were going through a shift so sadly a whole floor was closed. It was still cool to see though.

Gonzalo, Pedro, Laura, & me on La Puente Vizcaya. We took a glass elevator 50 metros (165 ft.) up. For those of you who know me well, I have a fear of heights and elevators (and a few other things :p). But once we got to the top the views were definitely worth it. 

La Puente Vizcaya from the ground 

Laura & her dad took me on a tour around Bilbao & Las Arenas. This is a picture of the playa (beach) that they like to go to during summer. Isn’t it gorgeous?! This is the Mar Cantábrico that borders the northern coast of Spain. It was pretty cool to get to see it since I had just labeled it on a map a few days before in my culture class.  

On the last stop of our tour we went up this mountain to see Bilbao from above. It was cool pointing out the places I had been the previous days. In this picture you can see Bilbao’s skyscraper (Torre Iberdrola) as well as the Guggenheim Museum. 

Other Notable Memories

  • The bus ride from Salamanca to Bilbao was about 5 & half hours. Good thing I brought my iPod! — oh wait… iPods don’t work unless you have earphones -__- Luckily for me our bus played some classics aka Genie in a Bottle, and Baby One More Time 
  • We watched two movies (in Spanish of course): Marley & Me (en Español Una Pareja de Tres) and Who Want’s to Be a Millionaire. I cried while watching both.
  • I ate calamari and it was so good! I’ve tried it before and have never liked it. But because it was so fresh it was delicious.
  • Bilbao’s metro was so nice. It was so smooth compared to NYC’s (but that’s because Bilbao’s is new and NYC’s is ancient). LA def. needs to jump on this train (haha get it?? …. yeah, I know that was lame. Sorry. I couldn’t help it)
  • We went to eat at this restaurant called Deluxe. After seeing the giant hamburgers, hotdogs, and pizzas this place served, the name makes perfect sense. Let’s just say this hotdog puts the size of a Dodger dog to shame.
  • After eating at Deluxe we were stuffed and exhausted. I thought it was appropriate to explain to them an expression I use quite often in English — food coma
  • It was so much warmer here than in Salamanca. Even though it sprinkled a little, I was so thankful for warm(er) weather.
  • We went to an awesome outdoor tent lounge/café/bar thing. It was lit up in colored lights, and they had outdoor couches and tables for people to hang out and have a drink at — I of course had my fav. café con leche (and, yes, I’ll admit it. I’m addicted to coffee). Another thing LA needs to get on.

Once again, shout out to Laura, Pedro, Gonzalo, their parents, and all their family for welcoming me with open arms. I had such an amazing time & cannot express my gratitude enough.

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