Entries Tagged as 'Europe'

Windows and doors of Seville

1

25.11.14

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Wrought iron. Bright paint. Gold trimmings. Private gated patios of cool marble to fight the scorching summers. The doors and windows of Seville scream Mediterranean. Plainer windows often come adorned with flocks of pigeons and doves. Service entrances have flourishes of yellow molding around them. And I may have been so nervous that someone was going to find me snooping around their courtyard that half of my pictures are shaky…

Not all of the city looked like this of course – I have not pictured the neighborhoods of urban highrises or some of the grittier side streets. I’ve cut out the vendors trying to sell you trinkets. But its easy to escape all of that. The charming historical centre is larger than I’d expected and great efforts have clearly been made to keep its authenticity (no easy feat when you can trace its architectural history back for 1,000 years across the city.) Taken individually above, you could be looking at pictures of eight different cities. But they are one in the same. I wanted to snap everything.

Reason #2 to visit Seville: every street will lead you to different architecture.

(Read about Reason #1 here.)

Street wandering in Seville

10

24.11.14

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

There are few things better in this life than getting lost in a new city. (As long as it isn’t scary – I’m looking at you Johannesburg…)

Many of Seville’s tiny lanes are so small, it was almost harder to figure out where you were on the map than to just keep wandering until you came to the next square and got your bearings.

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

I thought I’d wandered little medieval passageways in French countryside towns and in German mountain villages, but Seville’s lanes were something else. They were so tidy, so navigable, so central that it felt like a grown-up maze. I wondered how on earth they ever moved into the apartments towering over head.

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Seville // Jess-On-Thames

Inevitably, as I got my bearings around town, I figured out that I could choose to walk along the main roads or wander the back streets. If ever you find yourself with this choice – do yourself a favor: choose the lanes. You’ll feel like a kid again in no time.

(A kid who has time to admire pastel house colorings and fountain carvings…)

Reason #1 to visit Seville: Get lost

Holiday jetlag

16

18.11.14

Jess in Seville

I have diagnosed myself.

I have jetlag.

Jetlag from vacation, having crossed only one time zone.

Stay with me for a minute because I am convinced this is a real thing…

Traveling gets my curiosity going. It gets my heart going. I get my learning on and I get my walking shoes on. I try to understand what makes another culture tick and give up my trivialities and my worries for a few days.

Travelling solo brings that out even more so. I woke up thrilled by the fact that I had no agenda everyday. I could get going whenever I wanted. Two cups of coffee while getting ready? No problem. In no rush to throw off the pajamas? Amazing.

I’d wrap my camera over my shoulder, grab my city map and my brand new iPhone 6 (no…  wait… I broke that approximately 5 seconds after arriving in Seville) … my iPAD (yes, I was THAT tourist on this trip holding up a screen the size of my face to get my Instagram pics) and run out the door. Maybe I had a plan, maybe I didn’t. Maybe I’d look at the map, maybe I wouldn’t. Maybe I’d get lost. Maybe I’d find my way again. Maybe I’d ask for help. Maybe I’d accidentally speak Italian to everyone. Maybe I’d be shy about asking for recommendations. Maybe I’d get my courage up and do it anyway. Maybe I’d embarrass myself. Did it really matter?

Maybe I’d run around town and see so many sites in one go my feet would ache at night. Maybe I’d take my time the next day and sit in a Moorish Garden with Amy Poehler’s (incredible) book for an hour, soaking up the sun. Maybe I’d discover something.

Travelling solo makes you realise and appreciate the power of choice. And the fact that you need to make choices because no one else will make them for you. Adrenaline is also a funny thing. I’m learning that travel is the one thing that can guarantee to get my heart going.

But this post is about the one thing I apparently haven’t learned and that is how to come back down from it. I landed in London on Saturday afternoon, ran errands all day Sunday and tried to fix the last phone I broke (yes, this is apparently now “a thing” and I no longer trust myself with technology).

I could not for the life of me fall asleep last night. My mind was racing. Going back to work/to the everyday/to responsibilities was hard. I’d only gone to Spain – I was still in Europe – there was a one hour time difference – why couldn’t I snap out of it and just rest?

And here we are – Monday night – I’m exhausted. I’m not exactly sure why I’d been so unsettled the night before – why I couldn’t snap out of the solo travel mode.

But I do know I’ll embrace it again at the next opportunity. Being diagnosed with holiday jetlag is 100% worth it.

Seville trip in stats:

  • 1,354 miles from London to Seville
  • 2.5 hours flight from Gatwick Airport via EasyJet
  • 4 nights via AirBnB
  • 6 historic sites visited
  • 840 pictures taken
  • 3 evenings of neighbors hosting opera singing lessons
  • 3 meals consisting purely of gazpacho (trust me, its better in Seville)
  • 2 rooftop Gin & Tonics

Theme by Blogmilk   Coded by Brandi Bernoskie