Granada Spain

On one of the private facebook groups I belong to, the question was put out, "Do you journal?" And I used to. I have boxes full of old journals. When I thought back to when I would sit down and put pen to paper purely as a mental dump, a thoughtless stream of words not really meant to be read back, well I realized I miss those moments. 

So while in Granada, I picked up this little cutie at a gift shop.

Can't help but love how well Rosie (my MacBook)  and new journal go together. 

Can't help but love how well Rosie (my MacBook)  and new journal go together. 

Outside the bus stop in Centro Granada, there is a colourful gift shop that goes on and on. 

Outside the bus stop in Centro Granada, there is a colourful gift shop that goes on and on. 

Diaz and I had hopped on the city bus to see where it would take us. We wound through the narrow streets I would never expect a small car to fit through let alone a bus. The driver impressively passed between buildings with only inches to spare on either side.

I had to add this image. We are sitting inside the bus and there is nothing but a window between us and the building outside. 

I had to add this image. We are sitting inside the bus and there is nothing but a window between us and the building outside. 

Our own "bus" on the narrow streets of Granada. 

Our own "bus" on the narrow streets of Granada. 

Here is little bit from my first journal entry:

At 11pm, the kids are finally asleep. I poured myself a glass of cold white wine, turned the flashlight on from my phone, and headed out to the porch where there is a small cushioned bench. 31°C and the air is finally starting to cool. Being a Sunday night, Granada is quiet except for a few street singers and drummers in the distance. A small after dinner crowd passes by on the street below, their chatter low with laughter in their voices. This is when I miss my girlfriends the very most.  

Flamenco class in Granada's city centre.

Flamenco class in Granada's city centre.

Of course my kids want to get in on the dancing!

Of course my kids want to get in on the dancing!

What a journey this has been so far. There are days when I think, what more can I do? And by the evening, I think, gad what a full day. The kids surprisingly don't complain about the heat, some days the temperature is as high as 43°C. We do our best at not extending them or ourselves. But there are times, always there are times when we are hauling stroller, suitcases, the kids, groceries, up to the third floor where the airbnb apartment is, we feel ourselves getting irritable, our internal temperatures exceeding our limits; yet the kids' energy is unending. They bounce around the new apartment excited to be in yet another new space.

Stairs and more stairs in a hot, stinky (think bottom of a bong) stairwell. All Diaz sees is that she's helping her Dad out by unloading the car and hauling as much as she can up to the apartment. I adore and admire her resilience. 

Stairs and more stairs in a hot, stinky (think bottom of a bong) stairwell. All Diaz sees is that she's helping her Dad out by unloading the car and hauling as much as she can up to the apartment. I adore and admire her resilience. 

We are a little over two months into our journey from France down to the South of Spain. We had booked the house in a town called Jumilla in southern Spain months ago. Nothing to do with the area but all to do with the price, size of the house and yard and because there is a pool. Our entire trip through North Spain, Portugal and across the South of Spain has been to journey to this house in Jumilla. Our stop in Granada is to break up the drive from Portugal to Jumilla.

Dirty window shot of  the miles and miles of olive groves all along the South of Spain.

Dirty window shot of  the miles and miles of olive groves all along the South of Spain.

The lifestyle is different here. It runs late. Lunch doesn't start until 1:30 at the earliest. Dinner at 9. Shops close from 1:30 to 4:30 for lunch and siesta. We thought the French lifestyle took time to get used to. Now it seems normal. 

I can hear that lifestyle below me. The guitar continues as does the singer and the clapping, Gypsy King style. Mopeds and scooters push up the streets. My white wine warms in the late night air. I can see headlamps wind slowly up to the mountain on a late night tour. One day, when the kids are older, we will do things like this. Even for a day tour through the Alhambra and Generalife, we would have had to book our entry tickets - just to get in! - a  month in advance. Make a note if you are planning a trip here during the high season (May until October).

View of the Alhambra.

View of the Alhambra.

The musicians let out a rapid drumming... is it in a restaurant? in the square? Suddenly people burst out clapping when the drumming stops and quite suddenly, everything falls silent. I can imagine the restauranteurs pack up their patios, stacking the chairs high. I imagine the tourists and locals alike take the last swigs of their drinks, collect their purses and hats to begin the stroll home through this labyrinth of a city. 

A little strumming in the cafe the next morning. 

A little strumming in the cafe the next morning. 

I close up my journal, turn off my flashlight and finish my now warm wine in the quiet, preparing myself for another day of energetic kids in scorching temperatures in a city we can do nothing but truly get lost in.