Monday, June 13, 2011

Lisbon is A Beautiful City!

We arrived in Lisbon via the bus and headed straight for our hostel that we prebooked to make sure we had a place to stay our final 3 nights. The hostel we stayed at was called Oasis Backpackers Hostel. It was by far my favorite hostel we stayed in. Our room had a bathroom you would generally find in a 5 star hotel, comfy beds, nice common kitchen area and a beatiful view of the bay from our balcony. When we arrived they showed us our room and then brought us down to the patio for a complementary drink. We met a few cool people our first night so we just hung out on the balcony having beers and sangrias from the patio downstairs. The next day a group of us decided to head down to the beach to catch some sun and do some surfing in the ocean. I opted out of the surfing the first day because I was kind of skeptical as to how my knee would hold up. Still had a good time swimming and catching some sun. The sun was hotter on the beach then it was anywhere else we stayed this whole trip. That being said we all got pretty sun burnt.

That night Graham and a few of the others that we had met did the pub crawl that the hostel puts on a few nights a week. I decided to stay back and hang out with Camilla (our new friend from Chile) at the patio where we met a bunch of people from all over the world. It was a fun relaxing night just drinking a nice mix of booze from the patio bar with great music to go along with it.

The next day we headed back to the beach we went to the day before and decided to go surfing again and this time I decided I would give it a shot because it didn't look as strenuous on the knees as I initially thought it would be. As soon as we got our wet suits on it started to rain but surprisingly enough our instructor said that its the best time to surf in the rain because the waves are just right. My surfing experience in Lisbon was as surreal as it gets because while it was raining where we were, way out in the ocean you could see the sun shining through and big ocean liners making there way by in the gleaming sunlight. At one end of the beach we were surfing on there was an old Castle/Lighthouse and right in the middle of our surfing lesson a massive rainbow came right up out of the castle and way into the sky. I must have just floated there for 4-5 minutes with my arms over my board staring at this rainbow and taking it all in. In the 2.5 hour session we got I caught maybe 4-5 good waves in and the thrill of riding the waves are like nothing i've ever done before. It's almost like the surf board has a little motor when you feel the vibrations of the waves turning over near the back of the board. I have to admit, surfing was a lot harder then it looks but I will definitely give it another shot by the end of this summer. After our surfing lesson we headed back to the hostel and went our for some Portuguese chicken.

That night Graham, Ben and the two guys we met from Boston went on the pub crawl again but I was so burnt out that I decided to stick back with Camilla for more drinks on the balcony. The beers and the balcony seemed to be calling my name that night because I had no urge to go out at all even though the initial plan was to do the pub crawl with the guys. Around 2:30 am Camilla and I headed in and I was going to try and shut my eyes for a few hours because Graham and I had to get up at 430 am to head to the airport to catch our flight home. I didn't fall asleep though because I heard Ben and the Boston guys come in from the pub crawl with no sign of Graham. At this point, it was about 3:45 and I was pretty sure that Graham wasn't going to make it back to the hostel in time to make it to the airport. I wasn't sure wether I should just go and meet him there or wait around the hostel and risk missing the flight. Sure enough he showed up about 15 minutes before we left. PLASTERED! He could hardly walk lol. He drunkenly decided that he should wake up all 10 people in our hostel room to say good bye which surprisingly everyone sort of went along with and didn't get mad lol. It probably helped that we knew them though. When we got down to second floor, there door was left open and unfortunately Graham noticed and decided to go in. Good thing there was only 6 people on this floor because sure enough he woke up everyone there too. After we finally got down to 1st floor we got the guy working the desk to call us a cabbie. Graham fell asleep for the whole ride to the airport which I thought would have sobered him up a little. We walked in the front doors at the airport and I was constantly reminding Graham to try his best to walk straight and act sober because I didn't want them to not let him on. We finally made it though customs and everything and found some seats to sleep on before we got on the plane. Graham passed right out but I had a harder time so I walked around to kill time. It was sad to be leaving but nice to come home to see everyone.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What Happens When 2 Canadians Try To Hitch Hike In Portugal?

Our last night in Barcelona turned out to be a pretty interesting night. Graham and Anna, our couch surfing host got the idea that it would be funny if I went to the store with just a plaid shirt and a towel on and nothing else. Surprisingly, I had only had one rum and coke by this point and decided to prove them wrong and go to the store wearing just a towel and my plaid shirt. The best part is that the reason I needed to go to the store was to buy chocolate sauce for a cake Anna made for the birthday party. The video is on facebook if anyone is interested in having a good laugh. After I returned from the store with the chocolate sauce I decided I should put some pants on if we are going to head out to this party. Unfortunately my jeans were still drying on the line so I had to go to plan B. The jeans that Graham bought in Edinburgh that were even too tight for him. I could hardly squeeze into them because they were definitely too small. I could only get one of the buttons up so I had to borrow a belt from Anna so I would look some what presentable. Now that I resolved my pants dilemma we were off to the party. Once I walked in the door with my tight jeans I felt like fresh meat. The party turned out to be one of Anna's friends who is now gay. It was a total sausage fest, but none the less it was still a fun party. Around 1am we headed back to Anna's flat because all the boys were off to the club.

Graham and I caught our 8am train in the morning and slept most of the way to Granada. We arrived in Granada around 7pm and started to look for a place to camp out for the night. We found a little Irish Bar and decided to go in for a beer so we could have a break from walking around the city looking for a good camping spot. About half way through my beer a black guy came up to us selling watches. It wasn't so bad tho because I've had my eyes open for a watch for some time now so I figured it wouldn't hurt to check out what he's got. Upon looking at the watches he had displayed in a little box I told him I wasn't interested. Then he pulled a bag of watches out with a bunch of watches individually wrapped. He started laying the watches out on the table so we could have a look and thats when a nice Tag Heuer watch caught my attention. He wanted 55 Euros for the watch which would be an amazing deal if the watch was real. I told him I would do 50 Euros because I figured it was fake but I still really liked the watch and figured what the hell. If it breaks in a few hours or a few days it will be a good lesson learned. Don't buy watches off black guys in Irish bars in Spain. Just saying that sounds totally wring but as I type the watch still ticks so I'm happy with it. We walked around for atleast a couple hours looking for a spot to camp out but Granada had nothing to offer us. We finally caved in and headed for the hotels in the area to find the cheapest one. We ended up finding a nice 4 star for 50 Euros.

The next morning we tried to book another night in that same hotel but they were booked so we headed off to find another hotel and found a nice little 3 star just up the road. Once we dropped our bags off in the room we headed out for lunch. We found a cool little place operated by a little old lady in a back alley off the main strip and decided to give it a shot. The whole menu was in spanish so we just picked 2 random items on the menu and waited to see what she brought out to us. Graham got a sandwich with lettuce, tomato, ham, cheese and peameal bacon. I got a sandwich with chicken, onions and some sauce. They were both really good so it wasn`t so bad ordering off the `mystery menu`. Graham decided he wanted to explore the hill side of Granada where it seemed to be an older area with white washed houses along with flamenco dancers. I was pretty beat so I decided to head back to the hotel and just relax a bit and grab some beer and tapas. Tapas has been in a pleasant little surpise in Spain but more so in Granada. Depending on where you are in Spain and what bar your at will determine whether you get tapas or not. Tapas is a little dish of food that comes with every alcoholic drink you order. However, it originated in Granada so no matter what bar your in here, it will come with tapas. Some of the dishes we`ve received with drinks have been mixed nuts, dough balls and a plate with chicken, chips and pieces of bread. Tapas is a great idea and I`m definitely going to miss it.

Next morning we caught a train to Badajoz which is a border town right next to Portugal in Spain. We found a 2 star hotel to stay in called the Condedu Hotel. It was surprisingly nice for a 2 star. It came equipped with a flat screen tv, a huge balcony, mini fridge, a safe, A/C and what I would call a 4 star washroom with a baday. After a good nights sleep we started walking towards Portugal with our packs, some water and a little bag of food in case we had to camp out. We walked for about 2 hours to get to the border of Spain and Portugal and once we were across we found a truck stop where we thought we could easily catch a ride with a trucker into Lisbon. It didn`t quite pan out the way we had hoped it would. We attempted to talk to a few truckers and most of them just told us no before we could even ask. One trucker was very nice and even though he couldn`t speak english he tried to help us find a truck that was heading to Lisbon. Asking asking 3-4 truckers for us we decided to head back out to the highway and hold our cardboard `Lisbon` sign out and hope that a passerby would be nice enough to pick us up. we pretty ,much got everything but picked up. We got the finger, thumbs up, waving arms, the peace sign, cars swerving over like they were going to pick us up and then they just take off and lastly we got told by some highway patrol guy that we couldn`t hitch hike and we had to get off the highway.

So, the answer to the title of this blog is that 2 Canadians get really bad farmers tans and end up walking back to Spain to stay in the same hotel as the night before lol.

Once I got back and showered up I decided to walk to the casino to get some poker in but the poker room was pretty lame. They ony had 4 tables and only a dealer at one of them which didn;t even have players. I just watched a bit of roulette and then headed back to the hotel. Graham and I watched `The Adjustment Bureau` which was a pretty good/interesting movie he passed out and I started writing this. Off to Lisbon by bus tommorow so i`ll write in a few days. See ya!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Granada is The Next Stop!

We had our mini camping experience on the beaches of Spain. We left Anna's place around 7 last night and headed to the beach that we were camping on which was about an hour away. We parked about 30 minutes from our actual camp spot so by the time we got to the beach there was no lights other then a light house that wasn't too far away and the odd cruise ship way out in the Mediterranian. We used Graham's Iphone to set up the tents which worked out pretty well, minus the fact that all the directions were in Dutch because we bought the tents when we were back in Holland. Once both tents were up we got a fire going using some dried up cactus leaves and twigs we found on the beach. Once it was going enough to leave it for a bit Graham and I went off into the woods to collect some wood to keep the fire going strong. We ran into some guy near a hut on the beach and I tried to explain to him that we were collecting fire wood but he just stared at me with a blank face. We kept on going and finally found some nice dry wood to burn and on our way back that same guy near the hut started talking to us in near perfect english. He asked us where we were from and told us that he has a daughter that lives in Montreal. It seemed so weird because our first interaction with him was just me speaking english to him and trying to explain things with my hands. He gave us a few pinecones that he said he uses for kindling and offered us to come in for some food but we had left Anna back at the beach so we declined and headed back to work on the fire some more.

Around 11 we saw a bunch of flashlights heading in our direction from the hills. It was kind of creeping us out because we were the only ones around and there was about 6-7 of them. We first thought it may be police because we were having a fire illegally on the beach but it turned out they were just fisherman who do there spear fishing at night. It was interesting to watch them out in the water because all you can see is there flash light moving around out in the water. One of the younger guys came over and sat with us while we had our fire. He only spoke to Anna because he didn't know any english. But he was pretty useful because he knew where a bunch of good fire wood was so he kept going to get wood every time the fire got low. We noticed a big glowing red spot in the sky and we were stumped for about 10 minutes because we couldn't figure out what it was. We first thought it was a cruise ship way off in the distance but it turned out to be the moon. It looked nothing like the moon at first because it was so red but after a little while you could tell clearly what it was. I went to bed by 12 or so because I was beat but Graham and Anna stayed up and eventually all the fisherman ended up back around our camp fire because the water was too choppy to do any good fishing.

I woke up about an hour and a half before Graham and Anna and walked the beach by my self and walked out on some rock points and just relaxed. Eventually people started showing up to the beach and Graham and Anna woke up. It was a nude beach so most of the people were older and butt naked. We did some snorkling around the bigger rocks on the beach and then climbed to the top of one of the bigger rocks and just sat there in the sun for a while. Once we started to feel like we were getting burnt we headed back to the tents and packed everything up to head home.

Graham and I booked our train tickets to Granada for tommorow morning at 8am so tonight we are just going to take it easy. Anna has a birthday party to go to at 10 so we will probably go with her to that but then when they all go to the club at 12 Graham and I will head back and sleep.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Italy and Portugal Are Next!

So its may 17th and we've been traveling for 22 days now. It seems like this whole trip has just been a big blur so far, which is probably because of the booze consumption since we landed in Glasgow. Thank god for pictures and this blog to read to reflect on everything that has happened. Yesterday I started playing poker at Casino Barcelona and in my first session of 2 hours at 1-2 Euro I made 65 Euros. The entire table was full of donkeys and as soon as you get any sort of decent hand you get payed off which isnt normal. After dinner and a few rum and cokes I decided to try my luck again so I headed back down to the casino and played for another 2 hours. This time around I made 114 Euros. At this point I was starting to plan out where I could rent a flat and just live here and play poker because the tables were so loose and profitable. But, thats the way I get when things go well a few times in a row lol.

Today we woke up around noon and headed down to the fresh food market and bought stuff for breakfast. After breakfast I decided I would give the poker another go because it was so profitable yesterday. Graham and Anna went to the Cathedral they have been building since the 1800's which I heard was gorgeous. They also checked out a few little parks with live performers and some impressive fountains and ponds. I played poker for 6 hours and ended up losing all the profits I made yesterday. I'll quote the famous Doyle Brunson by saying "Thats poker folks". You have to be prepared for the upwings and downswings of poker if you want play it regularly. It was still a lot of fun to play a nice long session though so I have no regrets. When I got back to the flat after poker Anna and Graham were passed out sleeping. After I woke them up they made an amazing Curry chicken dinner. The way its been working here is that they cook and I do dishes which isnt that bad of a deal. Graham and Anna both passed out early tonight so I snuck out to write this and talk to some people back home.

I think this is the moment I`ve officialy realized I am addicted to traveling. There`s nothing like waking up and heading down to the market and getting food for breakfast for 3 people for 4 Euros and then hopping on the metro down to the beach where the casino is to play some poker or relax on the beach and catch some sun. It`s like the perfect world here, not to mention the fact that everyone is so relaxed and laid back here. It`s not like Toronto where everything is go-go-go.

 On Friday Anna, Graham and myself are heading to some beach about an hour from here to do some camping. Graham and I bought a 2 man tent for each of us when we were in Amsterdam so we will finally get to put them to use. Instead of buying the roll out sleeping mats people generally get, we bought inflatable pool mattresses because they were cheap and they a easy to carry when deflated. They probably arent the best for our backs but were not sleeping on them every night so who cares lol. After a few nights of camping we will probably head back to Annas to pack up our stuff and head to Italy. Italy and Portugal are our next 2 stops because we can not leave the warm weather and beaches. Anyone that has experienced Southern Europe will know what I`m talking about when I say it`s next to impossible to leave here. Anyways, that`s all for now, I have to get some sleep because Graham and I are heading to some small town outside of Barcelona tommorow morning to explore and see what its all about. I`ll try and post again before we go camping. Bye everyone!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Enjoying Beautiful Barcelona!

We made it to Barcelona finally with only one last hitch. While we were waiting for our train to pick us up from Narbonne, somebody committed suicide on the tracks at the station before ours. There was police everywhere and it was mayhem in the train station. There was a bunch of trains that were delayed 2.5 hours but luckily ours was only delayed 50 minutes. We were lucky because we had to catch a specific train into Barcelona that we thought we would miss due to the accident on the tracks but they held that train because it was the last one running for the night into Barcelona. We arrived in Barcelona Just after midnight and called Anna. Anna is our couch surfing host. Couch surfing is an internet data base of travelers who open up there home to travelers and let them stay with them for a little bit. We took a cab from the train station to Anna's because at the end of a 37 hour travel day the bus system in a foreign country is the last thing you want to try and figure out. The cabby dropped us off in some back alley off one of the main streets in Barcelona. It seemed pretty sketchy at first but it was the street that Anna lived on so it was a bit easier to justify to myself that it was safe. She lives in a flat on the 5th story of 6 story building. Once we got upstairs and introduced ourselves, we all decided to get some sleep because graham and I were pretty tired from travelling and Anna had to get up to go to work the next day.

We woke up around 9 and headed straight to the beach which was about an hour long walk. The beaches of Barcelona are gorgeous and I have never seen so many topless women in my life. At 430 Anna finished work so we met up near the casino for a quick beer and then we wondered around and she showed us a few cool spots in Barcelona. After stopping at a bar for mojitos and beer we went back to Anna's to shower and head out to meet a few of her friends for dinner. After the dinner, her friends went home and we headed out to a pub and bought 3.5 liters of Sangria to split between the 3 of us. The sangria came in a huge jug with ice and a built in tap. After about 40 minutes of drinking Sangria we had about a litre left and it was looking impossible to finish. But drunk me was not going to be defeated by this "sangria machine". We managed to finish the whole thing and we were all tipsy. After that we stumbled over to another bar that people drink at before they go clubbing. I have to explain the way it works over here though because it's completely different then the north american way of "clubbing". First you go for dinner which is around 930 and have a few drinks. Then you go to a bar/club that you predrink at before you haed of to the real club. By the time you are actually heading to the real club its about 2 AM and then you party there until 6 am. S around 130 we left the predrinking bar and made our way to the club and we danced and drank like machines for 5 straight hours which is unheard of for me lol. I don't know if it was the booze, the music or the lights in this club but I was dancing all night. It was the most fun I've ever had at a club. We came back to Anna's flat and we all passed out. Our first day in Barcelona was a great success.

The next morning Graham, Anna and myself went to the local market and bought ingredients to make a spanish Omellette. It was a really thick pie like omellette that was made up of potatoes, onions and eggs. It was very tasty. After breakfast we headed to a famous Barcelona park that was created and designed by a guy named Gaudi. He had a very unique style of constructing architecture. One of his most famous pieces was a park with a court yard with a very famous lizard sculpture. The entire court yard was raised about 30 feet off the ground with a buliding underneath. The court yard had benches all around its perimeter made of broken pieces of tile. It was very artistic looking and the way it was designed was really unique because all the water that gathered on the ceramic benches when it rained would go through holes spaced evenly throughout the benches and gathered in troughs on the back side of the benches and flowed to these dragon heads where the water would then pour out of the dragon's mouth. We then headed back towards Anna's flat and picked up ingredients to make some pizza from scratch and also a 40 of rum and some pepsi. We had a very relaxed night of drinking rum and making pizza and listening to music. We finished the 40 fairly quickly and had to move onto some other booze that Anna had laying around. Anna played some guitar for us and at that point the hole couch surfing thing seemed surreal. I never ever suspected that you could meet someone online that would take you into thier house and treat you like family. Two of her flat mates (room mates) showed up around 2 AM so we all played a round of Kings, the drinking game. Around 530 AM Graham, Anna and I hopped on the subway and went down to the beach to watch the sunrise. Unfortunately it was cloudy and started to rain so we only lasted about an hour there and didn't get to see the sunrise. This morning we all headed down to the beach around 130 in the afternoon and stayed there for 3-4 hours. I tryed to play some poker because the casino is right on the beach but I didn't have pants with me so they wouldn't let me in. Luckily Graham had pants so he let me where his pants. When I showed up at the casino with the pants on I figured everything was good to go and I would be playing poker shortly but that was not the case at all. Apparently you only need ID to get into the casino but you need a passport to play poker and other table games. Who knew! Anna headed off to tutor her brother so she gave Graham and I the keys to her place and she's going to meet us back here around midnight. We're just about to head out for some dinner and then head back to the Casino where I'm going to play poker and he is going to see some live music.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Stuck in Narbonne!

Graham and I left Bathmen yesterday morning to make our way back to Amsterdam. Anne drove us to Deventer where we caught a train into Amsterdam. We walked around Amsterdam for a few hours befaore we started making our way to Spain. We walked through the red light district which wasn't quite the same because there was no red lights on and all the windows had curtains in them rather then women. Just before we left we ate a smoked Herring sandwich. It wasnt very good at all. We hopped on a train in Amsterdam at 2:53 which was supposed to get us to Spain for 11:48 the next morning because of the tranfers and such. We made our first few trains no problem and then it was time for the sleeper train which we excited for because we were totally beat. The sleeper train had about 30 cars and while we were walking to our car to get on we saw that every car was made up of rooms with 4-6 beds. At this point we couldn't wait to get on the train to fall asleep and wake up with only one more train to be in Barcelona by the beaches. As we approached our car, number 19, we then realized that we were stuck with normal chairs that recline just a bit more then usual. It was a huge downer because those chairs suck to sleep in. Of course sitting beside us was a drunk guy who was mumbling to himself in french the whole time. Not to mention the fact that he some how found the light switch to our car and was playing with them for a good few minutes before he moved on to the next car to play with there lights. Next he was picking his scabs and looking at them. It was probably the most discusting guy we've ever seen. Thankfully after he finished his mickey of Vodka he passed out. We both probably only got an hour of sleep in total on the train. We caught our next train that was taking us to Gare De Narbonne. Unfortunately the train showed up late and we ended up missing our train to Barcelona. We asked at the information desk when the next train to Barcelona was and she told us it was at 4PM. That left us with 7.5 hours to kill. We found a round about with a bunch of grass that we layed on for about an hour before deciding to go find some food and a nicer spot to lay down. We found a decent little park that we layed down in for a while before wondering around some more to kill time. W found a pretty cool cathedral from 1272 that we went in and wondered around before going to get some food. There wasn't a lot of options for food because the lazy french people shut down everything for a couple hours every afternoon. How they make money is beyond me. We met the "leader of le resistance" while making our way back through a back alley towards the train station. She was a pretty cool old lady. She travelled the world and has lived in many different countries including Vancouver for a few years. She was on welfare because she couldn't find work over here but she justified it to herself because her dad payed taxes for 50 plus years. Her views and beliefs were like that of a hippie (very open minded, not into T.V. or internet and loved to read because she believed knowledge is freedom). We must of talked to her for a good 45 minutes while keeping an eye on her cat that she was taking for a walk.

We arrived at the train station around 330 to make sure we caught our 4:15 train to Barcelona to find out that there was no 4:15 train to Barcelona. We asked at the information desk about catching the next train to Barcelona and we were told there was onlly connecting trains to Barcelona now. It wasn't too bad up until this point but then I asked if our previous train ticket was still valid and she said that it wasn't. Now there was a problem! We were stuck in Narbonne with a wasted train ticket because our connecting train arrived late and no apparent way of getting to Spain tonight unless we bought new train tickets. After a slow argument due to the language barrier of me not speaking french and her not speaking english we managed to get everything sorted out. She wrote a note on the back of our expired train ticket saying that we missed our connecting train because the ticket exchange people were on strike (which they are) so we are currently waiting till 7:45 to catch a train to Figueras. which we will then transfer to a train to Barcelona. Our 15 hour trip from Amsterdam to Spain turned into a 36 hour trip with about 1 hour of sleep. Not a big fan of the Eurorail Pass right now. Hopefully the next post will be from Spain and not here in Narbonne!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

3 More Days Till Barcelona

Its just before midnight here and we're getting ready to pass out. We had our most relaxing day yet. We walked to Anne's Mom and Dad's house which is just up the street in the most beautiful little town I've even been in. It's about an hour East of Amsterdam and it's called Bathmen but its pronounced bautem. We went up to her parents house to do our laundry because we were all out of clean clothes. I learned how to hang up clothes on a line because that is something I've never done before lol. There is actually some skill involved because the first few articles I hung up kept falling off until I was shown the right way of doing it lol. Everything here is so relaxed and laid back. Everyone here rides there bikes around and walks there dogs through the parks. The streets and sidewalks are all made of bricks and every single plant and tree is perfectly groomed. I'm pretty sure that the town is fake because everything is so perfect. While we were waiting for our clothes to dry Anne took us to a little spot to swim on the canal behind her parents house. Graham actually went swimming even though the water was ice cold. Anne and I just put our feet in and layed there in the sun and tanned. After we walked back and picked up our laundry we went out to a little restaurant in her town for some croquettes and fries with apple pie and ice cream for desert. We ended up back at Annes place and just ordered some pizza and watched a movie.

Yesterday morning Anne met us at De Dam (a big square in Amsterdam with a memorial monument) to take us on a canal tour. The tour was pretty cool because we go to see many streets of holland from the canals as opposed to the streets. The boat took us past Anne Franks house and the narrowest house in Amsterdam which was only 6 feet wide. After the canal tour we were all hungry so we went to a restaurant and ate a farely odd dinner. It was a massive pancake with bacon and cheese and a dutch syrup all over it. It tasted amazing. From there we went on to do the Heineken Brewery Tour which was much more then I ever expected. It was only 12 Euros and we got an entire tour of the place along with 2 pints and a tester beer. They also let us eat the hops and barley in it's pure form. The barley actually tasted pretty good. It was very similar to deshelled sun flower seeds but with a unique flavour. When we first walked in for the tour and checked our bags in the lady gave us our bracelets that were good for the 2 free beers during the tour but she told us if we put our bracelets in our pocket we would get another bracelet at the door. This worked so when it came time for the 2 free pints at the end of the tour we all enjoyed 4. We met 2 guys from Vancouver in the bar at the end of the tour and while we were talking to them 2 different people came up to us and gave us there beer tokens that they didn't want to drink. I'm not sure if it was our Canadian hats that caused this but I'm not complaining.

Last night Anne took us to her friends Husband's birthday party. It was just a little back yard patio party with drinks and some finger food. There was also to chickens and 2 huge rabbits which was pretty cool because you generally don't have that at parties back home. There was only 3-4 of her friends that spoke english so Graham and I were limited to who all we could talk to, however, by the end of the night we were pretty much talking to everyone because apparently after you drink a lot you learn to speak Dutch lol. Her friends were all very nice and always made sure we had a beer in our hands. As soon as you have a sip left in your beer there was a fresh beer being handed to you. At about midnight they pulled out a few bottles of liquor that we were all doing shots from. Graham really took a liking to this Dutch liquor and drank more then his fair share of it. Anne and I had to carry Graham back to her place because he could not even function enough to walk back. All in all it was a great party with a lot of great people.

Were heading back to Amsterdam Wednesday morning and we are going to spend the day there until we catch a midnight train to Barcelona where we will be spending atleast 4-5 days.