Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Spain and France, almost a year ago~

These days, I really don't need a reason to be grouchy, moody, melancholic, let's see, what other emotion can I type....?
They seem to dominate me lately.
Today I am in a melancholic mood. I am coming up on my one year anniversary of when Breanne and Mitchell and I toured Spain and France.
Ahhhhh, I remember it well. I actually went through withdrawl when I got home from that trip.

I used to live in Germany ( Army Brat) and I can recall, with great detail, every little thing about it. Go ahead, ask me. If you dare. Because I might ramble. Just be warned.
( ask me about the bakery van when your bored to tears and have nothing to do that day)

Say what you will about Europe. . . .I love it.

I don't know if it's because I have 50 % french blood in me or because I appreciate design and structures and era. Europe is , well, for lack of a better word, old.
The United States is a mere baby compared to it.

I miss the cobblestone streets, the hundreds of Sprees parked on the side of the road, the artwork for sale along the Notre Dame Cathedral. The sidewalk cafes, ( ok, I don't miss the outrageous prices for beverages)the river Sienne at night.
That was amazing to me. We took a river boat tour at the Eiffel tower at night and had the wonderful opportunity to watch people come to the riverbanks with their baquettes and bottles of wine and sit on the edge. Hundreds of people. So casual. So relaxed.
We can't do that here. I feel robbed.
We can't grab a bottle of wine and a loaf of bread and walk to the river and spread out a blanket and watch all the tourists go by on boats.

And all the bridges we went under were so cool. Each one different from the last. Gargoyles, Feur de Lis, scrollwork that was hundreds of years old. I can't even begin to describe how wonderful they looked all lit up at night.

Oh and the boulangeries! We had one right out our hotel door! *Picture me throwing my handsout to my side and singing " ahhhhh hahhhhhhh".* It was pure unadulterated joy for me to walk in and order something and know it was going to be like no other pastry you can get in the states. Because you just can't. No heavy crisco aftertaste, no grainy sugary residue, no imitation taste. Pure heaven.
Mitchell took us to the worlds oldest restaurant , Botin, in Spain. Originated in the late 16 hundreds , four floors and we ate in the cellar. . ( In the picture, that was our table, with the shrimp on it) I choose the roast suckling pig with roasted potatoes. I remember walking upstairs to the bathroom and as I passed the kitchen, I quickly glanced at all the pigs heads lined up on the counters. 20 or so. Which did nothing to squealch my appetite, because, well, I love pork. ( You HATE it compared to how much I love it!)

Afterwards, we walked the , again, cobblestone streets and found a place that sold hot chocolate.
Not the kind your thinking of. This was as thick as pudding and came with a churro to dip into.

One thing that took getting used to was that the night life in Spain did not die down until around 5-6 a.m. Dinner was usually around 9-11 p.m. and then it was party time afterwards.
And us tourists go to bed and listen to the parties below until the wee hours of the morning.
But I adapted and loved listening to the sounds of people below.

I want to go back. I would even endure the 10 hour plane ride to do it. Think about it, ten hours of me squishing the girls together and exiting the plane with one giangantic "girl".
We went to Madrid, Barcelona ( I was actually in Casa Battlo', my dream !) Paris, and Normandy.Normandy was a very humbling trip. The beaches on D-Day became real and not just a story and the cemetary brought me to tears as I walked up and down the rows of white crosses.

I could go on and on and on about every place we visited and what glorious food we ate. But I will not. Unless you want me to.
( please oh please oh please ask me)

And so yes, I miss it terribly. I need to win the lottery so I can take you with me. And experience it all over again.

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