I woke up and had 3 strangers in the hostel (they weren’t there when I went to bed… this is normal) I didn’t want to wake them up so I ended up falling back asleep and finally left at about 11 to go pay for another night. San Sebastian is amazing; it’s a sharply contrasting place where waves of high-rise apartments slam into a surfer’s paradise… (except for the cold water).
I went to walk along the ocean and ran into Jose, who I met last night in the hostel, he works in a fancy hotel in Madrid as a bellhop. He was heading to check out the view from the fort at the top of some huge hill, so I joined him, hiking up twisting and turning cobble stone stairways. The view looking out over “the bay of the conch”.
We hiked back down and walked along the boardwalk towards the far end of the beach where there was another nice view point. To get to the view point you can walk along the road for 30-45 minutes or take the funicular, a really steep railway with a tiny car that takes you up. From the top of the view point you could make out little pieces of land that are part of France. There was also a little theme park for kids with some rides and games at the top but not much more than that.
I went back down the funicular and sat on the beach watching some French skim-boarders who were pretty good I wish I would have had my wetsuit and board. They started to pack up so I left. After going through a little tunnel I was on the other side of a cliff and saw some guys with surf kayaks riding the waves so I watched them along with a guy on a surfboard but he barely rode any waves so I got bored.
After going home to eat something I went across the river/ inlet to check out another beach with much better waves and 10 times more surfers. Walking up to the beach you have to walk along the sea wall; every few minutes a really big wave would slam into the sea wall throwing up a huge spray of water, sending kids screaming, running in all directions. I thought it would be nice to take off my shoes and walk along the beach but by 430 the sun was starting to hide behind the buildings and the temperature was dropping. Earlier in the day it was so warm that I was in just a tee shirt and jeans, which was a nice change from the weather in Segovia. When I went up to the boardwalk to rinse my feet there were two kids who had a huge air-filled rubber ball that they had buried halfway in the sand. They were using it like a trampoline and doing flips on the beach.
Walking back to the hostel I stopped to buy a few things for diner; I wanted to try cooking some Preceres (some strange type of seafood like a barnacle). I was curious how they felt so I touched one of them and the lady behind the counter nearly cut my fingers off. Remember people in your store are potential money! Those things were 20 Euros for a kilo ( I was about to spend 10 Euro).
Went back home and started cooking when the French kid, Valentine, came in. Jose and I were going to watch the Soccer game in the hostel but the TV didn’t work so I invited him to come with us to some Irish pub. Valentine is 23 and studying to manage hotels and likes wine a little too much. When we got to the pub the game was about to start and luckily I missed my chance to enter a bet into the machine in the pub I was hoping for the game to end 3-1 Madrid (realistically though Barcelona is a much better team).
Jose and I turned to watch the game and after a few minutes Jose taps me on the shoulder and says that Valentine just threw up… Again with the throw up??? Not on the floor, not outside, not in the restroom but all over the bar. Then he didn’t want to leave or didn’t have enough sense to leave and change his clothes. The bartenders got upset with us expecting us to drag him out but we told them he was some kid we met in the hostel they backed off. Madrid made an epic lucky goal within 30 seconds of the game starting but it went downhill from there, ending 3-1. I went home to pack my things and get ready to head out in the morning.
When I walked into my room there were three girls sitting around talking. Maria, Marta and Abad are from Barcelona; no wonder I couldn’t understand most of what they were saying… but besides Catalan, they also spoke Castellano (Spanish), which they used with me. We ended up taking for a few hours while trying to fall asleep with the booming music from the bar/club below…Barbara Streisand…