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Ibiza-Madrid, Spain-Europe Day 7

Kiana and I didn’t really sleep at all. We got back to the hostel around 6am and Kiana left around 8:30am to catch her flight back to Barcelona. I slept in til 11 when I had to check out then read on the beach for a bit before catching the bus to the airport. After all the crazy happenings that went on in Ibiza, it was nice to lay on the beach and lay on the chairs at the airport doing nothing. I lived out my Tom Hanks “Terminal” fantasy wandering the airport eating pastries and editing pictures to the soundtrack of boarding calls and jet engines roaring.

When it came time to check in, I was offered an earlier flight and jumped at the opportunity to get to Madrid 2.5 hours early and not at midnight. The flight went smoothly and I ended up spending the entire flight talking with the girl in the seat next to me, Virginia. She was moving to Ibiza from Madrid and was flying back to bring some more stuff over. I showed her pictures of my family and we talked about Ibiza and Madrid and she gave me a massive list of things to do in Madrid.

My Airplane Friend, Virginia

When we got to the airport she called some hostels from her phone for me. They were all booked so I decided to try my luck on Grand Via, Madrid’s Time Square. I got off the metro at Grand Via and wandered down a side road. Every couple of steps down the street there were women loitering, this should have been a sign. One of these women came up to me and propositioned me for sex. I was in the red light district, backpacking backpack and all. I told her no thanks and tried to walk around. She sidestepped me, said we could have “some fun”, and grabbed my dick: a grand slam in the hooker world. I stood my ground though, I still had my backpack on and this women had what appeared to be a small cultivation of herpes on the left side of her mouth. It was not an appetizing offer and I needed to get out of the red light district.

The Streets of Madrid

I made my way down Grand Via walking from hostel to hostel in search of a room. Up seven flights of stairs, down seven flights of stairs, up five flights of stairs, you get the idea. I was having no luck because it was a Friday night in Madrid’s Time Square. The last hostel I stopped at on Grand Via helped me find a hostel outside of town. I hopped on the metro, and got off at the right stop…in Madrid’s Harlem. I could hear sirens from outside the hostel as I made my way up the creaky old stairs to the hostel’s reception. It was a sketchy place, but I was tired and not about to go searching for another hostel at midnight. I checked into my room and passed out with my clothes on.

About to be hit by a car

Ibiza Town Coast

Ibiza, Spain-Europe Day 6

Waking up in the Che Guevara suite, last night’s hijinks were but a distant memory, with only a faint reminder in the form of a minor headache. Kiana and I had the free breakfast at the hostel, croissant, orange juice, and coffee. It wasn’t much, but the croissant was one of the best I’ve ever had in my life. We’d made plans to meet up with the DC guys at our hostel but not til 1 so we had time to kill before our rendezvous. We decided to go for a walk along the beach before our meet up. The beaches in Ibiza are postcard beautiful with bright blue water and soft sand. Something else worth mentioning, they’re all topless beaches and the women of Ibiza are beautiful…foreshadowing.

Ibiza Town Coast

Ibiza Town Coast

After our jaunt, we meet up with the DC guys at the hostel and debate renting some form of transportation. The shop across the street from our hostel rents scooters for 20 euro/day. Not bad split two ways, Kiana and I sharing a scooter. However, neither of us has ever driven a scooter. The second choice, rent a car between the 4 of us. A minor problem, only one of us can drive stick and he doesn’t feel comfortable driving in another country.

We end up talking with the shopkeeper and he offers to drive us all over the island stopping everywhere and showing us everything for 30 euros apiece. We eagerly agree, and wait for him to check with his manager. He comes back with another guy yelling at him…presumably the manager. Apparently he wasn’t supposed to offer deals like this without consulting the manager first. The two argue in rapid spanish for a bit as we look on, uncertain of our future. Then it begins to rain.

Literally everything in Ibiza closes when it rains: clubs, shops, banks, everything, including the island tour shop. Luckily it began to rain before we paid for the tour so our money wasn’t wasted on a tour of a very rainy Ibiza. As a group, we decided it can’t possibly be raining on all of Ibiza, and take a bus to San Antonio, Ibiza’s other city.

San Antonio is amazing. Everything is cheaper, the prices are lower, and there’s a more concentrated club area.  Stop 1, “English Breakfast” at the first restaurant we see. Five euro for sausage, bacon, beans, and toast with a cup of coffee. Post breakfast/lunch, we walk the beach and find a nice spot to lay out and read/tan. I notice next to our group is a couple laying out, the woman is sunning topless on her stomach and the guy is laying next to her. I roll over. A couple minutes pass and I roll back over, the guy is laying on top of his girlfriend. I assume he’s kidding around and about to rub suntan lotion on his girlfriend’s back. Jokingly I say to Kiana, “I bet they’re about to have sex.” How right my guess was. Sliding bathing suits around strategically, the couple starts having sex, right on the beach, surrounded by hotels and other people, in broad daylight, in the middle of the afternoon. The four of us do our best to ignore the couple and enjoy our beach day.

Several minutes go by and a group of older ladies drags some lounge chairs down to the water and proceed to tan around this couple, who are still going at it. Now the couple has an audience, pretty much all around them. One would assume they’re going to stop at this point. The couple did not stop. Apparently they thought better of it and decided to switch positions to her on top. I just want to take this time to say Ibiza is all kinds of bizarre, but this really took the cake and moments later, the guy took his cake and the couple packed their stuff up and left.

The less crazy beach

The less crazy beach

Now that our entertainment had left, we got up as well and went to explore another more secluded, and less crazy beach. It was a beautiful beach in its own little cove with only a handful of beach goers. After a bit of tanning and a far more normal beach experience, we walked back into town and watched the sunset in front of Cafe del Mar, a cafe right on the water playing really chill trance music.

Sunset at Ibiza

Sunset at Ibiza

Our DC friends

Our DC friends

Watching the sunset from Cafe Del Mar

Watching the sunset from Cafe Del Mar

Back in town, we caught the bus back to Ibiza town and showered up for SPACE that night. We met up with the DC guys at our hostel and went to SPACE’s Kehakuma party. Kehakuma is every Thursday at SPACE and its one incredible night of underground electronic music from midnight to 6am. We bumped and grinded to awesome music amid a sea of glittery clubbers, fake boobs, platinum blonde hair and roided out guidos in tiny v-necks. In addition to the usual club goers, we saw a lot of people in 90s rap clothing: NWA flat brim hats, flannel shirts buttoned all the way up and black ray-bans.

KEHAKUMA at Space

KEHAKUMA at Space

When 5:30 rolled around we staggered out of the club into a predawn Ibiza and made our way down the road to a cab and

Ibiza Fort

Ibiza, Spain-Europe Day 5

What a difference a good night of sleep makes. I felt like a new man waking up in Ibiza. Kiana and I grabbed a quick breakfast down on the beach and moved our bags over to the hostel across the street. The hostel was the most hippyesque place I have ever stayed, to give an example, the room we stayed in was littered with Che Guevara posters and quotes. It was neat.

Che Hostel

Che Hostel

A bit later in the day Kiana and I walked into the center of Ibiza Town and visited the sites. At the highest point in the city is a historic fort built about 1000 years ago that was conquered and reconquered numerous times. Shortly into our visit to the fort, the heavens opened and Kiana and I were caught in a downpour. We took refuge in town at an ATM where we met two Americans from the University of Maryland travelling through Europe. It was nice to meet up with some Americans and have a taste of home and familiarity. We all grabbed some pizza in town and made plans to meet up downtown later that night.

Ibiza Fort

Ibiza Fort

Kiana and I returned to the hostel to recoup, grabbed some food down the road, and met up with the DC guys back in town. This is when the day’s madness really began. The DC guys had pubcrawled their way around town and Kiana and I had pregamed at the hostel, suffice to say, we were all ready to party. Our first stop of the night was down at Pacha, one of Ibiza’s superclubs with the intention of finding a cheaper way in than the 50 euro cover at the door. We arrived around 11:45 and clubs in Ibiza dont really even open til midnight. I went up to the bouncer at the head of the line and told him it was our last night in Ibiza and asked if he knew of any way we could get cheaper tickets. He suggested checking the dock as they might have 30 euro tickets. That was still too much, and we were still feeling bold.

Seeing as Plan A failed, it was time to try Plan B. We decided to walk around the building and see if there was another way in. Our first real opportunity was an open door on the side of the building, but seeing as the club hadn’t opened yet, we doubted we could hide in the club undetected long enough for it to open. Opportunity 2, the liquid courage we’d all drank was starting to really take affect, and in any other situation this idea would have never left the ground. Next to Pacha was a ritzy sushi restaurant that shared a wall with the club. We snuck into the sushi restaurant under the pretense of going to the bathroom and were promptly asked to leave.  Attempt number 3, try the back door. The back door was locked and a security guard started yelling at us so we had to run. Clearly this was not meant to be.

Dejectedly, we walked next door to a little bar and all got massive steins of beer. Two steins later, we had all forgotten about our failed club capers and were making friends with the other randoms in the bar.

Flash forward, we’re walking back from the bar, get lost, manage to get wifi from the front of some random house and navigate home.

Bruce Willis Vodka

Barcelona-Ibiza, Spain-Europe Day 4

My first real day of Backpacking Europe. Kiana and I woke up, showered and packed our bags to be out of the room by 11am, a checkout time we later learned is nearly universal. Our first stop of the day was back downstairs to the hotel where our parents were staying to continue using their free buffet. The buffet caper went off without a hitch and none of the hotel staff knew or cared that we were using their buffet and not staying there.

After our crime filled breakfast, Kiana and I walked to her friend Julia’s house to drop Kiana’s backpacking bag off while we went to Ibiza, since she would be returning to Barcelona afterwards. I kept mine, as I would be in Madrid afterwards. Bags dropped off, Kiana and I took the train to the airport and wandered the terminal before our flight.

The duty free shop in the airport sold 9 euro vodka that Kiana and I stocked up on before our trip to Ibiza. Not only was it only 9 euro, according to the label with Bruce Willis’ face on it, its the “best vodka he knows of.”

Bruce Willis Vodka

Bruce Willis Vodka

The flight to Ibiza went smoothly, it was only a 30 minute flight, yet the flight crew talked on the intercom literally the entire time, which made reading, listening to music, or hearing yourself think tough. When we touched down at Ibiza airport, we disembarked onto the tarmac and walked along the runway to a waiting bus that drove us the remaining 200 ft to the terminal entrance (it didn’t make sense to me either). The Ibiza airport was a truly international crowd, with a handful of Americans sprinkled in.

Kiana and I spoke with the Americans and we shared a bus to Ibiza town where we separated. The other Americans getting lost, and us wandering Ibiza Town for hours looking for inexpensive housing. The hostel we were told to stay at was booked for that night so we went across the street to Hotel Maritimo. The room was 50 euro and right on the water, not bad for Ibiza. Finally being able to put down our bags after a long and exhausting hike around town was glorious. I wanted to lay down and never get up. Then we got up. Ate pizza. Returned to the room and passed out for the night.

Today was such an adventure. Its hard to imagine we woke up this morning in Barcelona and passed out in an Ibiza Hotel that night. Ibiza was not at all what I expected. It was a neat place, but it reminded me of Key West with a handful of superclubs scattered around the island. I’d expected a strip of superclubs with a clear clubbing district, something closer to Vegas or Miami.