Hike and Lake

Today I went hiking. I hiked for a long time. All we had with us was a tiny water bottle. On the way down I got to drink the rest of the water.

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After that my family & I went swimming in a lake. After the lake we went home and watched a movie.

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July 4 2011

I got to touch some fishies in the lake and I got to swim in the lake for 2 and a 1/2 hours. Before I went to the lake I went mountain climbing and me and my family had a good time.

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Huérmeda

For the last two nights we have stayed in Huémeda, a tiny little village outside the small town of Catalayud, in the northeastern part of Spain. Huérmeda is about the size of our block at home, but draped across some steep hills. There are no restaurants or stores to speak of – everyone goes to Calatayud (pop. ~20,000) for food and entertainment.

Here’s part of the road up to our B&B, which is just up the hill to the right. You don’t drive up the right fork here, but you pretty much drive down every other tiny lane here and in the surrounding towns.

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In fact i have done a significant amount of backing up down alleys when it turns out the tiny lane is too small even for our itty Skoda rental car, or a road is two way only to a certain point.

The big attraction near Huérmeda are the ruins. There are several short hiking paths leading out of town, including one to the Roman ruins of Bilbilis up on a hill. Another good climb for us and the kids.

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Another attraction nearby (but requiring a short drive) is the thermal spring area at Balneario Termas Pallares, a large lake filled by hot springs and an associated spa hotel. There are a few of these hotels in the town (Alhama de Aragon) but this is biggest, and the only one with a lake. The kids loved the swimming, although Eero’s goal to catch some fish with his hands was not achieved.

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Rental car

Our plan, after spending three days in Barcelona, was to get a rental car and drive down the coast to a castle-turned-hotel (a “parador”) for the night. Our Barcelona apartment was only 4 km from the Hertz place, and it looked like it would be an easy task to ride the Metro down there, get the car, and come back to pick up our luggage and the head out of town.

The only concern was that all of Spain shuts down at 2pm for the afternoon siesta, so we had to be back to get our bags by then, or we’d be stuck until they reopened at 5pm. But we were leaving at 11am (checkout time), so that wouldn’t be an issue.

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Walking underground to and between trains: 30 minutes.
Riding trains: 10 minutes.
Walking down Avenida Diagonal: 20 minutes.
Stopping for ice cream: 25 minutes.
Waiting in line at the Hertz counter: 30 minutes.
Escaping the three level parking garage: 20 minutes.
Driving aimlessly around trying to get bearings: 10 minutes.
Realizing we need to use the GPS and getting it to work: 15 minutes.
Driving through jam packed Barcelona traffic, this time in the correct direction: 19 minutes.

This got us to the apartment office with one minute to spare and three years off our lives. But we made it, drove down the coast, and had a nice swim.

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Meta

I don’t know what to write in you. My daddy makes me write in you. I just wanted a journal for the trip so I could write in it whenever I wanted to write about stuffI thought exciting like about cats roming the streets, or pigeons under your chair, eating scraps you dropped. It’s so unfair being a sister. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!

Sincerely,

Cielo

P.S. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!

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June 30 2011

I like the sculpture of a guy with a trash can lid for a head a thingy majigger sticking out of his head and I took a picture of my mommy weth him and I had a good time.

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A short play

Cast of characters:
M: me
NG: News Guy
R: Robot

—-
M: Today I went on a long walk.
NG: What did you do on your walk?
M: I went to a big church.
NG: What did you see in the church?
M: I saw a mosaic
NG: What was the picture of?
M: It’s a picture of a flying lion on a red background.
NG: What is the picture on?
M: Ug! I’ve never been with someone so questioning in my life? Well! It was on a pole.
NG: What wee the poles supposed to look like?
M: The poles were supposed to look like a forest. It’s so cool! I wish you could see it!
R: WISH COULD SEE!

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June 29 2011

I saw this sculpture on the Sagrada Familia. The left side of the Sagrada Familia and then I ate lunch at a restaurant then I went home.

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Sagrada Familia

We’re in Barcelona, so the first stop had to be the Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s immense, organic, unfinished basilica. It’s impossible to capture it in one (or twenty) photos, but here’s a nice one anyway.

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Flying to Barcelona

Today we get on the plane. I’m so (o etc) excited. (2 hours later). I’ve bought my last memento from Istanbul. It’s a little glass kitty. (10 minutes of packing). Now we’re in a taxi and I’m reading in the taxi.

(3 hours later) We’re at the airport. We just went through security. (30 minutes just passed). We’re on the plane. (few minutes later). We just lifted. The view is beautiful! I wish you could come and see it.

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Sincerely,

Cielo

P.S. Now we’re going to Spain. How exciting! Isn’t it?

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