A Travellerspoint blog

One Island to the Next

From heaven on earth to broke in 7 days

overcast 19 °C
View IsroEuroTrip 2007 on abesworld's travel map.

England was a blast, between exciting London and amazing Liverpool we had a great time. We found some good places in London and then Paula showed us a great time in Liverpool, she is such a sweet girl and has the coolest friends. All pre-dental students, too. And of course it was a dream come true to be in the hometown of the Beatles.

Here we are in Dublin and I realize I've overdrawn my debit card. Wow. Wish me luck. I feel kind of awful at this point and am a bit worried about my economic situation. Anyone with connections feel free to contact me dad and wire money into my account (not seriously, I'll find a way out of it, I'm sure). Only a bit over a month and a half to go, hope I don't stave!

A big week ahead of us, Emily and I are on the internet waiting for our laundry to finish and time to check into our hostel. Big city ahead of us, then Belfast, Galway, and Aunt Susie's down south to fill the rest of the week.

Pray for me, as that's what I'll be doing.

Posted by abesworld 06:40 Archived in Ireland Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Londres

I meant London

all seasons in one day 21 °C
View IsroEuroTrip 2007 on abesworld's travel map.

Well, well, well! Em an I had a nice time in Paris, and in Marseille as a matter of fact. To tell you the truth, something really crazy just sort of came alive during our last day in Paris, when we went to Versailles, and here we are in London, beaming faces and doing as much as we can.

This is a great city, but the thing that really drove me wild is that when we were walking down the street, passersby were speaking in ENGLISH! Don't get me wrong, I love going to countries where the language is not my own, it's really fun. I had forgotten what it was like to understand everything and (almost) everyone around me, though. We went to a bookstore, and all of the books were in English. Between that and the caffeine (never a good idea for me) that I had that morning, I was bouncing off the walls.

London is beautiful, the weather is even more unpredictable than I expected--never seen more sunshowers in my whole life than in the past two days alone. It's a bit tough because I've done all of the shopping that I needed to do for the past few weeks, and we found everything I needed rather inexpensively, sent home some stuff, and I'm good to go now. However, I feel kind of poor after having spent it... Should put me in well for the next two months, though.

Camden Town is wicked, so much to see there and so many great little markets and shops. The Thames Walk by our hostel is nice, we've found a pub we now frequent called the Mudlark, I highly recommend it for dinner. Not too expensive and really good food. Most importantly, great music. We also met a friend from France on our way over named Guillaume who we met up with last night here, and he's actually on his way to our hostel now to hang out for the afternoon. Tonight we're off to see Blood Brothers, the show Anna's been raving about for 5 years already. We got our tickets this morning in the rain and watched the changing of the guards at Buckingham in the beautiful sunshine.

I'm off to meet up with Guillaume at the station, Emily's taking a nap right now. Liverpool on Friday, then IRELAND!

Posted by abesworld 05:59 Archived in England Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

En Paris, avec Emily

Grey and cloudy, escaping to the south

overcast 14 °C

Bonjour! My my my, this is a beautiful city. I've been enjoying myself very much in Paris, really figuring out how to get around without being sneered at. Upon arrival, I was clueless, now I'm quite acclimated. Emily and I met up finally, and we came to her friends' house. Nicest people, the two girls showed us around plenty, but they left for a summer program yesterday. Emily and I have become the groupies of the live band that we luckily found last night, and we'll be going to their next gig tomorrow night. But for now...

We're going down to Marseille for the night, enjoying the hot weather, walking around one of Europe's oldest towns, and going to the beach tomorrow. We're having such a nice time, it's such an amazing feeling being out here, having had all of my experiences on my own, and now getting to share them with one of my best friends. The weather doesn't look like it's going to cheer up here in the north, nor does it look like it will be any nicer in England for the next week. We'll need some luck for Ireland, as the forecast doesn't go that far. Either way, rain or sun, we're just happy to be together here in these old but new places.

Posted by abesworld 23:48 Archived in France Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

all stereotypes of paris are true

but only half true.

semi-overcast 15 °C
View IsroEuroTrip 2007 on abesworld's travel map.

Here I am in Paris in Hannah's apartment. So nice to be in a place of living as opposed to the very public--although exciting--hostel life. I couldn't update in Sevilla anymore because the computers didn't let me do that there. My Belfast friends and Owen left for Beth's house at the beach just after James and I gave each other mohawks with his clippers. I miss them, and I'm excited to see Emma up in Belfast when Emily and I go up. WAHOO!!

So I was adopted by a Jewish family today in Paris when I showed up in a synagogue with all of my stuff, a mess, and looking barely kosher with my new hair and shorts on. Got plenty of blank stares, a bunch of kids kept asking me questions. I was really an interesting site on Shabbat morning. Well, I got invited upstairs to Kaddish and ate plenty, then, with my bags stored in a closet somewhere, a nice middle-aged man named Mosheh showed me the combo to the synagogue lock so that I could get in later and took me to his house for more lunch. On the walk back a man named Eliyahu (his Hebrew name, for I couldn't pronounce his French name) and I discussed a lot of things, as he spoke English. He sounded a lot like me when he was my age, but now he is this very religious man, it's really interesting to see another road my life might bring me to.

We got to the apartment, a nice view of a courtyard. It was a very long and large meal, I was surrounded by this French family as we discussed this and that (me understanding about a thousandth of the conversation). A woman named Miriam spoke English and actually lived in Northeast Philly for several months at one points. Eventually I was tired, and as if reading my mind, everyone got up for a nap (I didn't realize that until I woke up 30 minutes into mine to see that everyone was quiet and not in the main room). Frida, the wife, brought a sheet out for me after the meal and a pillow, and I just laid down on the couch.

I feel guilty, but I snuck out today because everyone was still asleep and I didn't know how to say that I had to go. I met up with Hannah at the Opera house near Bastille, but on the wait I was harassed by two drunk men. We got Japanese food and then my bags from shul.

France. I was treated like dirt in a bakery this morning but taken into a home of a nice Jewish family after an entire congregation taking me under their wing and making me feel at home. I was harassed by drunkards this evening but the woman who served me ice cream smiled and gave me advice for dealing with French people (she was American, though). Either way, yeah the people are unfriendly, but the people are also very friendly and generous. Isn't that like everywhere? DUH. Another French stereotype was the antisemitism, but I felt proud and comfortable being Jewish where I was today. In Spain, Jewish was a foreign thing, and I only met very few Jews there, who all happened to be travelers.

I see Emily on Monday morning, and it should be amazing. Right now, in Hannah's apartment, I feel great and comfortable. I miss my friends, those that I've met everywhere from everywhere, but I shall see them all in due time.

Posted by abesworld 15:25 Archived in France Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Granada was a good choice

Beauty, fun, and friends, but my heart is in Jerusalem

sunny 24 °C
View IsroEuroTrip 2007 on abesworld's travel map.

I am having the best time. This is a true vacation. I am here in Granada, good choice leaving Madrid early, and enjoying myself thoroughly. I´ve made some good friends mostly from Ireland, one from England in that group, some from Canada, and others from everywhere in the world. Great hostel I´m at, very friendly, very exciting, and always something to do (even until 730 in the morning).

I just got done responding to a great email from Allie, a great friend from Israel Outdoors, and it really took a lot out of me but made me feel great. How did this trip affect us so much? It´s truly been the best gift I´ve ever received, along with Shahar´s pin. So I finish the email and I hear some very familiar words behind me. A nice woman is speaking on Skype in Hebrew, and I interrupted her call to make sure I was right! She said she´d talk to me after the call, but just hearing it while she talks to her loved one is just enough to make me feel great. There are no synagogues in Granada, I´m sure very few in Spain at all. No teach-yourself-Hebrew books anywhere, but definitely Arabic.

I realized what this trip was. It is a vacation, not what I expected it to be. I thought I´d have this cultural experience in which I was participating, but it is not. I am surrounded by new cultures which is amazing, and it´s great fun and amazing from which to learn. I´m learning so much from people everywhere, from everywhere, and eating up every word that they say. However, in Israel it was different. It was me surrounded by MY culture, feeling at home for the first time in ages. As much as I am assimilating to an Irish culture, and yeah, of all places in Granada, I relate to the Israeli culture at heart, and I always will. I went from 96% going home at the end of the summer to 84%. As I told Allie, that week in Israel will have a huge say in either direction.

I´m off to Sevilla tomorrow with my new friends, changing up plans while backpacking is fun! I´m really enjoying myself, feeling like myself and not having to worry about attaching to people, detaching from them, or even being alone. I am always with some new friend and having a great time discussing life and travels with them. I have many new stops coming up on my trip, like Portugal. I´m going to get into Paris a bit early because I wouldn´t be sure how to get there any other way. I hope it doesn´t cost too much when I get to the train station in Sevilla. Or in Madrid.

Big fun night tonight, last night in Granada. I´ll miss it, it´s a really nice town, great time, and great cheap food. Very relaxing, laid back people everywhere, fun nights, beautiful days. Today, for example, I went up to Sierra Nevada with two sisters from Calgary, it was great fun, but my face got burnt (the clouds and wind and cold weather at that altitude fooled me, argh). Tomorrow morning I´m going to Alhambra, it should be amazing. I relaxed the first few days here, so clearly I´m catching up on daytime sights and adventures at the tail end.

I´m loving Spain--to visit for an extended time, wouldn´t live here ever--and I can´t wait to see Emily and the rest of the world!

Posted by abesworld 12:13 Archived in Spain Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

(Entries 11 - 15 of 21) « Page 1 2 [3] 4 5 »