After our gruelingy long 1 day of class last week on Wednesday (10:30am to 7pm), Mike and I were more than excited to head home. Everyone had been looking forward to the weekend, as the Barca girls from Maryland were coming to visit the next evening! The girls who came to visit were Naomi, Monica, Sarah, Elby and Lauren.
That night, we decided to head to Big Ben on Calle Betis to meet up with our friend Chelsea & Co. Although we had been to Calle Betis more times than I can remember (Literally), we had never actually made it to Big Ben before. I think the reason for this is because you have to pass our local spot Alambique, and the Discoteca Demo to get there. Naturally we stopped at those two places, and after some euro tequila shots at Alambique and a full night of dancing at Demo we usually never were able to make it any further haha. We all hung out at big ben for a while, bounced between the bars and had good time.
All the Maryland Boys at Big Ben with our tight Bufandas
The Epic Day Arrives
The next morning, we woke up at 2 for lunch or so and then headed off to explore the city before the girls got in. We decided to go to the art museum near Plaza De Armas with our friends Becca and Tess. The museum had lots of really cool paintings, but they were all very religious which wasn’t quite for me, but nonetheless it was a really enjoyable afternoon.
We got back around 5 or 6, and hung out while we awaited the girls phone call telling us they had arrived at the airport. They’re flight was expected to land at 7:50pm, and we were planning at meeting them at the bus stop. As 8:30pm rolled around I began to get a little concerned as no one had called and we couldn’t figure out where the girls were. About an hour later, after messaging friends on facebook for a while to ask for the girls spain phone numbers I was finally able to get in touch with them. Turns out that the clowns had all forgotten to write my phone number down, so had no clue how to contact us and when I finally talked to them they were already at a bar haha.
Ollie and I hopped on our sevici’s (Sevilla’s amazing bike service) and rode over to meet up with the girls. They were sitting at a Cien Montaditos inPrado de San Sebastien, and we had quite an epic reunion. The girls were sitting on the packed patio outside, and the second they saw us on the bikes, all 5 of them jumped up out of their seats and started screaming and running towards us. It was rather amusing looking at the stunned expressions on the Spaniards faces, and I’m sure more than a few people were thinking that Ollie and I were quite the ladies men, which of course we are haha.
We decided to take the metro back to the residencia as it was much faster, and we didn’t want the girls to have to lug all of their bags back with them. After we got of the train at Plaza De Cuba, we headed towards our residencia to show them our new home. After a quick tour, Ollie and I went to drop them off at their surprisingly nice hostel in Triana just 10 minutes away from us.
We all got ready really quickly, met up, and then headed over to Torre Del Oro to show the girls the amazing concept that is Botellon.
Torre Del Oro and a very bright moon!
Best Friends re-united in Spain!
After spending an hour or so at the Botellon, we were all ready to get our groove on so we headed over to Buddha for our traditional thursday night dance parties.
Buddha was a blast, like usual and around 4 or so Me, Sarah, and Naomi hopped on a cab to head back home…or so we thought. The cab dropped us off at betis, right by where the girls live and we headed off towards the hostel. The only problem was that we couldn’t quite find the hostel, as all of the cobblestone streets looked the exact same, we had only been there once, and were all slightly intoxicated. After what felt like an hour of searching for it and the temperature kept falling, we decided we should go back to our residencia since we didn’t know what else to do.
We’re not supposed to have guests overnight, but after much deliberation about what to do upstairs, I figured the girls could crash on my bed, and I would just sleep on the couch and they would leave in the morning before mama rosa ever found out. Well, That turned out to be a bad idea haha. All the boys were upstairs in the kitchen around 6am assuming the girls were fast asleep, and we making chicken wings when mama rosa came upstairs and let us have it. Apparently, Naomi had woken up to use the restroom, and accidentally opened Mama Rosa’s door instead of the bathroom one as it is really dark in the hallway at night and hard to see. You could only imagine mama rosa’s surprise as she had never seen Naomi before, and kept trying to figure out what was going on and screaming “quien es”. We tried to explain the situation to her, and she said that the girls could stay for another couple hours but had to be out very early in the morning.
The next morning when we awoke, the girls had already headed back to their hostel. We had lunch, and Mama Rosa didn’t seem too upset but wasn’t exactly happy either, and then headed off to meet up with the girls. We met them at Phoenix, where the fattys were eating their second lunch of the day.
From there, we began to give them a tour of our beautiful city. Nick and I had left earlier on to meet up with them, and Sean and Ollie caught up to us later on by riding their sevici’s over. After seeing the bikes, Monica and Elby decided they wanted to try to ride them, making for one of the funnier moments of the trip as they both don’t quite know how to ride bikes.
Elby sort of figured it out, Monica not so much..
We first went to Plaza De Toros, which is the bullfighting ring, and then headed towards Alcazar and the Cathedral.
Also Saw a dude who was playing some blues and killing it on the harmonica which pretty entertaining. He had dancing simpsons characters at his feet for some reason haha
From there, we headed to our favorite park, parque Maria Luisa to show them the beautiful Plaza De Espana! To our surprise, as we approached Plaza de Espana, we ran into 4 friends from Maryland getting off the paddleboat, Chelsea and Jamie who were studying in Sevilla with us, and Allie and Dayna who also happened to be visiting Barca that same weekend!
Chicas on the boat
Everyone from Maryland at the Plaza De Espana
After our long day of exploring the city, we headed back home to freshen up for dinner. Before we all went out to eat that night, i figured i had to do something nice for Mama Rosa to apologize and get back on her good side. I decided to head over to floristeria, and bought her some pretty orange flowers and a chocolate bar from SuperSol. I had written a letter in Spanish for mama rosa to explain the situation since she hadn’t fully understood it earlier on. I walked in, and handed her all three things (Letter, Flower, and Chocolates) while she was sitting at the dinner table with everyone and she loved it. She gave me a big hug and everything was perfect and back to normal again. She truly has a very short memory, and is one of the most forgiving, friendly, funny and loving people i’ve ever met!
Afterwards, we met up with all the girls at Phoenix, and then headed off in search of a good restaurant to eat at. The bartenders at Phoenix are all really great, speak English, and are very helpful. When i asked if he could recommend a good restaurant, the bartender actually drew me a map on a napkin describing how to get to the restaurant he recommended down the road. On the way there, we saw a good looking Italian place and just decided to eat there, as it seemed solid and had room for our big group of 13. They couldn’t seat us all at one big table, so they gave us two circular booths next to one another. The restaurant was really good, and we all chowed down on some delicious pasta and pizza, sipped on some vino y cervezas and had a wonderful dinner.
The other table
Our Awesome Table
chicas y yo
After dinner, everyone decided to head over to chelsea’s place to pre-game before we went out that night. Hirsh and I decided to grab our beverages from the residencia, so we sevici’d over a few minutes after everyone had gotten there. As we approached the building, we were greeted by everyone screaming at us from the rooftop. Apparently, Chelsea has an awesome rooftop space which they have access to so we were back and forth between the roof and her apartment during the pre-game.
At Chelsea’s place
Unfortunately, Naomi and Lauren had been under the weather and weren’t feeling too well so decided to head back home instead of going out that night which was a bummer.
Mike and I with the girls right before they went home 😦
The rest of us, however, went out and got our groove thang on. We hit up Alambique, and then went to Demo for what felt like the 10th time that weekend and all had a great time.
Ran into our Argentiantian Bartender friend Ramon!
We went back to Chelsea’s for a while afterwards. The walk back was hilarious, as the girls broke out singing Titanic songs, and Dayna and Monica were bustine out all sorts of funky moves haha.
Dayna was having a good night
We all hung out on their rooftop for a while, and then headed back to our residencia once more at a time that was way later than would be acceptable in the US.
The next morning, or I guess afternoon as one o’clock isn’t exactly early for most people, we met up with the chicas at Cien Montaditos to grab a quick bite.
At Cien Montaditos. I clearly have a look of disbelief at something ridiculous Monica must have said
After spending some time there, the girls dropped their bags off at our residencia as they had checked out of the hostel. When we had reached the apartment, the rest of the gang was eating lunch. Monica immediately ran up and gave mama rosa a hug which was unexpected and entertaining. I re-introduced her to Sarah and Naomi, who she had met under rather different circumstances a few nights ago, and she greeted them with a laugh and one of her infamous Que Fuerte’s. The highlight was probably when Monica finally met nikita, as we had been calling Nikita Mini-Monica pretty much since the day we met her.
Monica meets Mini-Monica!
Naomi lookin ridiculous wearing my moroccan jacket haha
Afterwards, we all headed to the river to chill for the afternoon before the girls headed back on their flight. It was a lovely, relaxing afternoon with snacks, cheap wine, good music, and even better friends.
Lazing by the river
We really like Climbing Trees
As their flight approached, we came back to the residencia to grab the girls bags. Sean, Nick, and I took the metro with the girls to the bus stop and after a few minutes of waiting for the bus we had to say our goodbyes.
On our walk to the bus station…adios amigas!
All in all, it was a super fun surreal weekend! It was great to see some of my best friends and catch up with all the girls. Some of them kept saying that seeing all of us made them homesick and miss their friends from back home. To be honest, for me it had the opposite effect, as seeing good friends from back home made me feel much more at home and served as a reminder for all the great people awaiting us when we eventually do get back to the US.
Throughout the trip, Naomi kept asking me to visualize ourselves on a map. She said “think about where you are now, where we are visiting you from, and where we were just a few months ago.” Processing that and drawing strings between the thumbtacks on the mental map I had created in my head helped me realize, and appreciate the ridiculously amazing lifestyle that we have been living even more!
The fun never seems to stop, we are going to Italy in just two days!