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Loooooong overdue

rain 15 °C
View Basque Country on Sajeh's travel map.

I don't even want to know how long it's been since I last wrote and since it's been that long, I don't even know where to start. So to save you all from an incoherent session of rambling about the past weeks' events, I'll just summarize it a bit.

The past weekends:
1. Halloween!
We hadn’t expected people to celebrate it over here and we hadn’t seen too much Halloween decoration around either, so we thought it would pass by quite unnoticeable. But that Saturday evening, waiting in line at the supermarket, a boy with vampire make-up passed me. Hurray!

A bunch of us were going out for a drink at night, but of course we didn’t have anything at home to dress up. We did get the guys to agree on putting on a bit of nail polish… always a pleasure!
Bars were a lot more crowded than usual and people were walking around with orange Halloween-capes, so the atmosphere was actually pretty great.

Niké @ Halloween

Niké @ Halloween

2. Niké's birthday!
Two evenings of celebrating, with some funny scenarios. People falling off their bar stools, people disappearing and coming back, ... And I'm happy to say that this time I wasn't one of them.

Tiina, me and Niké at that last one's birthday bash

Tiina, me and Niké at that last one's birthday bash

The weather:
Rain, rain, thunderstorm, rain, rain, few rays of sun!, rain, rain, thunderstorm, rain, rain, ...
Looks like we're finally experiencing the typical Basque climate!

School:

We did some presentations and papers, on Basque media and on the marketing and launching of a self-chosen product into the Spanish/Basque market.
The one on Basque media turned out to be quite interesting, in my opinion. I'm planning on writing an article about it, because there have been a lot of newspapers that got shut down because they were accused of having ties with ETA, while in a lot of cases the accusations were false.

A scan of Euzkadi, one of the oldest Basque newspapers. It no longer exists

A scan of Euzkadi, one of the oldest Basque newspapers. It no longer exists

For my assignments in Belgium, I've chosen my topic and I've managed to find some people that are willing to do an interview. Still have to work out the details though, and hope that we can borrow recording equipment at school.

I've temporarily banished all other tasks to the back of my memory, so I can focus on the upcoming ones first.

Visits:

Here's where I'll just copy the last blog I've written for EiTB (their server was down for more than a week, it just got fixed, so not a lot of new posts there either).

Bad news: the flu has caught me by surprise, leaving me sick in bed at the moment. On the bright side: my cousin Anniek, my mum, and her boyfriend Jos came to visit me this week, making me their guide for a few days.

They arrived on Sunday evening in Santander, but I only went to see them on Monday morning in Bilbao. If they had been expecting a short sunny trip to the south, it was disappointing, because it had been raining almost non-stop for days and days. The Basque climate at its best! I took them for a long tour through the new and old part of Bilbao and of course introduced them to pintxos, which was greatly appreciated.

It’s great to see people arrive here and be as stunned about things as I was in those first days.
A glass of wine at less than 1 euro? Really?
What do you say when you leave somewhere, auwoert? No, it’s agur.

Bilbo – Gasteiz – Donostia – Bilbo
After Bilbao I told them to drive – they had rented a car – to Vitoria-Gasteiz for some late-night shopping (as most of us northern people, they were surprised by the siesta hours). Arriving in Vitoria, we had to sit out a long and heavy downpour, after which we went searching for umbrellas and new clothes. I’ve gotten used to it by now, but my visitors were surprised by the often very low prices of shoes and clothing here.

We drove to Bergara around 8 pm and went for dinner there. My mum and Jos stayed in a hotel here, while my cousin stayed over at our apartment, absorbing the student life. In the morning they left for Donostia and I stayed at home because I had to go to class in the afternoon to do a presentation. We met up again in the evening for pintxos in the Irish Pub. They were completely soaked because they had been walking through Donostia in the rain, but were nonetheless enthusiastic about the city and they discovered why it is so gastronomically known.

On Wednesday morning, we again drove to Bilbao to visit the Guggenheim, since it had been closed on Monday. And well, what’s not to like about the Guggenheim, especially with the current exposition of architect Frank Lloyd Wright. I recommend that one to everyone; it’s definitely worth seeing!

From one visit to another
After that visit, I had to take the bus back home and they had to leave for the airport. It was a short visit, but a welcome one. And there’s more to come, since Zahra, one of my best friends, is coming here next week for four days! We will probably go to the first day of the Zinebi film festival in Bilbao on Saturday and a concert of Atlas Sound and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart on Friday. Yay!

That's it again for now, agur!

Posted by Sajeh 14:42 Archived in Spain Tagged living_abroad

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