Stephen Young

12.9.06

Euro Summary!

Euro trip was pretty wicked. Landed in Ireland, quickly breezed through London, spent 4 days in Holland (Amsterdam is amazing! so much fun, so many bikes!). Amsterdam is jamed packed with museums, one of the best is the Rijkmuseum with tons of famous art.


Then we flew to Morocco for 6 days (rode some camels, hiked through the Atlas Mountains, got scammed and ripped off constantly), then took the ferry from Tangier, Morocco to Tarisha, Spain and found our way to the delightful midsized town of Sevilla (Spain's bullfighting and Flamenco dancing capital!), from there we decided to head north to Valencia and then to Bunol for the annual " La Tomatina" tomato throwing festival (imagine 20,000 people in a small city plaza and 100,000s of tomatoes dropped from trucks on top of them... madness), afterwards off to Barcelona for 2 days (Mark and I slept on the beach for 1 night, which we learnt later is incredibly dangerous and misguided... anyway all that happened is the cops woke us up!). Mark, Bernice and I then headed off towards southern France to stay with relatives of mine. On the way we stopped off in Figures, near the border of Spain/France, here we saw the Dhali Museum during a night showing from 11-1AM - Dhali is one crazy artist, and the entire building matched his style. From Figures we trudged on through several train connections and a delayed/missed train with 3X its capacity of people, to arrive in the French Riviera in St. Rapheal. We stayed 2 nights with my great uncle, who used to work in Singapore, first at a rubber plantation, and then as a senior guy in a headhunting firm. We relaxed by their pool, took a cruise on their yacht, and heard tales from his wife and her business adventures in Hong Kong. When it came time to depart, we took the TGV to paris and spent the better part of two days walking around the entire city - Eiffiel Tower at 1AM... very sparkly. We met up with Karen for an evening and she gave us the "local" tour. At the end of the night we stopped at crepe stand for dessert, the Tunisian guy cooking regaled us with tales of his opinions of people from around the world, including Canada as a wonderfully cosmopolitan country, and how beautiful Chinese people ( read girls) are. Then after getting up early to tour the Louvre (and actually not making it on time), we caught a (20euro) flight to Dublin where we spent a night at a wonderfully cheap (23E) and comfortable hostel... very cool city, modern/old/and in between. Bernice and I had dinner at a Temple Bar restaurant - delicious Boxty's (potato pancakes filled with steak and chicken), plus I enjoyed a few excellently poured Guinness pints. Bernice and I then left to head to Limerick in western Ireland, where we'd be catching our flight the next day. Along the way we stopped on in several small towns in search of an old family castle belonging to my mother's father's family. Alas the closest we came to finding "Castle Martin" was finding a sign on a wall that said "Castle Martin Stud Farm". In Limerick we stayed at a nice B&B run by an old lady who cooked an amazing "Full Irish Breakfast" consisting of sausage, egg, coffee, tea, toast, jam, cereal, beans, ohh so good! Then we flew home on a flight which was delayed, stoped in Iceland, threatened by lightnighing and generally harrassed to the tune of 5 hours, arriving at 8PM instead of 3.

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