Spain and Portugal – part 1: How it all begun


It has been exactly three weeks today since me and my dog Ignác started our road trip to Spain and Portugal. As it is my natural habit I keep worrying from the beginning about time flying too fast. But now I must say I realized I am still in the first half.

Anyway next week we are going to move on to Portugal and I feel like a bit summarizing our time in Spain. I made an eight weeks trip to India 3,5 years ago on my own. That time I wrote a diary about every single thing I wanted to remember. This time I bought a new diary for that and I haven´t written anything yet. But today I feel like it´s time to start.

When I was in India I didn´t have a blog and I didn´t know what Instagram is. I feel like this is a partly reason, why I have a problem to get deeply in present reality.

Honestly if I didn´t have my blog, I wouldn´t even share on Instagram. I am not that type of a person. But I love writing my stories and I see this as a great way to give it a picture too. I only have to find the balance to keep it fun and not a distraction.

So here I am writing. Finally.

Decision to go

Let´s start from the beggining. I already wrote about a reason, why I am here in my previous article, so I won´t go deep into that. Let´s say I haven´t had a holiay for past two years, so I arranged at work to get seven weeks off.

My personal life has been a mess for past many months, so I saw this as an opportunity to take time only for myself.

I have a dog

I think normally in this situation I would take a back pack and go to Asia as I did with my India trip. But this time there was one thing different – dog.

We got Ignác together with Raja. I was sceptical as I was afraid we won´t be able to travel with him. But as we were a couple and Raja promised that we will manage, I believed him and agreed. Well, we are not a couple anymore, but I am managing.

So now we are getting to a reason why Spain. Ignác struggles with separation enxiety (maybe me too), so I knew he has to go with me. As the trip is long and I already carried his stuff on my back once for a week, this wasn´t an option.

I knew that traveling with Ignác will be easiest by car.

I would be scared to put him on a plane and too lazy to take a train or bus. So it was clear that destination must be in Europe.

Let´s not go too deep, I picked Spain and Portugal, where I haven´t been before, bought an old car from a friend (still paying a debth) and planning could begin.

Slow traveling

At the beggining I must say, that purpose of this trip is not a sighseeing or seeing as many places as possible in as short time as possible. I travel slow and choose less known places. So it can happen that people will ask me: “You were in Spain and didn´t see this?”

With famous places it´s like with New Year´s Eve.

Somebody once said that it´s great and you are supposed to have fun there. Those places are usually very beautiful and worth seeing, there is no doubt about that. But as everyone wants to see them, that makes them less beautiful to me.

I tent to get anxious at these kind of places especially in hot summer days. People and people everywhere, you don’t evet get to see that monument or take a picture of it because there are people all around. If it´s a city, that´s one of the occasions I think would be more fun for me travel with someone. Having sangria and tapas and watching life around. This would be fun for a day or two for me.

Also I live in a capital back home so that can be also the reason why I want a change for my holiday. I like staying at some small cute place for few days, having time to sleep, drink wine, read a book and just walk around.

Three days journey

First destination was Barcelona. It´s 2 000 km from Prague. Count hours of driving on your own. As I didn´t want to rush anywhere and I didn´t know how Ignác (don´t forget I am traveling with dog) will take so many hours in the car, I planned two stops in between.

For the reasons mentioned earlier I thought it would be good to meet someone in Barcelona. At the end my mum decided to start with me from Prague and fly back home from there. So I had an extra company for the first week.

We started our drive on Saturday afternoon and drew only 300 km to Germany, where we stayed overnight. Next day was long. Almost 900 km through Switzerland to France, where I wanted to take a day off from driving and we stayed two nights. And then finally around 700 km to Barcelona.

Barcelona

I must say that we were already quite exhausted after the whole way and now were supposed to be tourists in Barcelona. Unfortunately our accommodation didn´t give us too much rest either. Well, except traveling slow I also travel cheap. We had a room with Airbnb, it was all good, just we were not only guests and on the top of that being in tiny room with my mum and my dog… you know.

We had three full days in Barcelona and to give it a bit easy start we went to find a beach the first day. I mean a dog beach. This was very funny. You know, my mum he really not a fan of dogs. But she is a fan of beaches, sunbathing… so that´s what she thought she will do. Just lie down and catch some color. She haven´t been on dog´s beach obviously and me neither.

Ignác was super excited, he was running to the water and back, jumping, barking, but as other dogs did too. So setting the towel on the sand didn´t really make much sense as those creatures would just run all over. There was a dog who looks like being there without the owner. No one knew who´s dog is it, but he had a ball and he would always bring it to someone to play with him. So people kept throwing the ball to this dog. And guess who he convinced to play with him too. My mum!

Second day we went to see the city. We saw Park Guell, Sagrada Familia, walked a bit around and we got pretty tired soon. So then there was a question what to do with our last day. At the end for not feeling guilty of wasting our time there we drew a bit behind Barcelona to Monserrat.

I must say I was already really exhausted that time, I also had a very bad dream at night, which stayed with me for few days. I started feeling a really urge need to finally be alone, so I know I didn´t enjoy the city as much as I could.

And so I left my mum at the airport and my solo trip could actually begin. That short time at the airport was actually really important.

Next article coming soon!

I had to experience many different things, travel different places, so I could find myself. But then especially during my travels I met a lot of people, who used to tell me, that they admire my courage to go towards my dreams. And so I decided to stop keeping my story in a drawer and use it to inspire all these people to show them that they can do anything they want.
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