i started this post saturday night. it went something like this:
"it's saturday night in granada, spain, and instead of primping myself in preparation for going out for beers and tapas, i'm laying in bed eating corn nuts and watching parent trap. pajama-ed and bra-less.
my hands though. MY HANDS. they're ready to party. intricate arabic henna on the right. a couple of brand new statement rings on the left. and all ten fingernails freshly coated in my brand new glossy grey nail polish. i feel like a woman."
the hands. the hands.
forty-eight hours later, an entire sunday and monday duo have come and gone, and i'm back in bed after the most relaxing day, happily full of love and joy and the pringles and chocolate croissants that i desperately hiked halfway across town for. and while the rest of me is lookin' a little haggard my hands are still looking fierce. nary a paint chip! a chip-less forty-eight hours is a success in my book.

we start classes on wednesday, so naturally i am throwing myself a bit of a pity party as i mourn these last few precious days of summer, even though deep down i realize i'm lucky to have had an entire month longer of vacation than most. and i really  realize how fortunate i am to have spent these last few months traveling the world. i wouldn't trade these experiences for anything - not even a silly summer extension! however tempting that seems... ;)

after our group trip to morocco (which i may or may not eventually write about, along with the other 614 things on my "bloggity" list [and yes that list actually exists and yes that's actually what it's entitled]), we had a six day vacation that we could do with whatever our little hearts desired. many turned around and traveled onward while a few of us chose to stay close to home. i was honestly excited to have an extended period of time to explore granada at my leisure and fancied the idea of going on a quick little getaway to a nearby city - an excuse to get out of town without straying too far or dealing with the stress of plans/means of transportation/budget/etc. come friday, my friend frances and i ended up doing just that. we did a little research thursday evening, booked a hostel, threw a change of clothes in our backpacks, and were off to malaga by friday morning.
we decided to forgo any real "planning" (which i've learned easily leads to over-planning and ultimately, some serious travel style-cramping) and just go - we hopped on the city bus we were *pretty* sure would end up at the bus station; arrived without previously checking the granada - malaga bus schedule and grabbed the next available ticket; had the address of the hostel but no real directions on how to get there. the type A in me never thought i'd be saying this, but i actually really enjoy traveling this way. it's so much more relaxed with minimal pressure or expectations, which makes it that much easier to really take in the surroundings and enjoy the journey rather than focusing on the destination.
malaga is a relatively big city on la costa del sol of the mediterranean sea. considering it's the sixth largest city in spain, we were surprised to find it's fairly easy to navigate by foot. only once were we tempted to stray from walking and that's because we saw horse-drawn carriage tours. ;) a dream-come-true for the little princesses within us that have yet to grow up. (our reality of life-as-a-poor-college student held us back, however).

when we arrived in malaga on friday morning, we walked straight to the pablo picasso museum. neither of us are die-hard fans, but seeing as picasso was born in malaga, how could we not, you know?
even though photos weren't allowed in the museum, i couldn't help myself but to do a from-the-purse-sneak-and-snap, just because i was feeling a little rebellious and this portrait reminded me of hana #crazycatlady.
after the museum, we went and explored the alcazaba and castle of gibralfaro, a royal fortress and ancient moorish ruins, respectively. it reminded me of a simpler version of the ahlambra - lots of little twists, turns, and narrow corridors leading to the unknown with a random garden or fountain stuck here or there, and the most beautiful overlook of the city.
friday night we treated ourselves to a fancy italian meal of garlic bread and hawaiian pizza and filled in the cracks with frozen yogurt as we walked along the port, window shopping and people watching. it was surprisingly quiet for a friday night, so we took advantage of the lazy, relaxed pace and were in no hurry as we weaved our way back to our hostel.
as frances and i were settling in for the night in our eight-person co-ed dorm, we were commenting on how we'd yet to have met our roommates when we heard a round of giggles coming from outside our door. the door handle jiggled as someone attempted to open it. frances and i exchanged looks as we watched the struggle unravel; the door finally swung open and our eyes were drawn to those who were entering: two blushing, young oriental girls, followed by a tall, dark, handsome, freshly showered, argentinian william levy lookalike. so that's what all the fuss was about. frances and i were no better composed, quickly turning into gushing little school girls, melting into drippy puddles of infatuation every time he spoke. (brag moment, fernando, or levy, as we appropriately coded him, slept on my bottom bunk. i know. he slept under me. i slept on top of him. [LOL i'm sorry grandma! someone please clarify this for her if she's confused! love you!]) after a little introductory chitchat, i learned that he spent his senior year of high school as an exchange student in des moines. iowa! fate most definitely brought us together, and seeing as i didn't even get his facebook information, i'm trusting fate to reunite us again in the future so we can fall in love, get married, etc. ;)
on saturday morning we toured malaga's cathedral, walked the winding side streets until we found a place to stop for lunch (this time, chinese ;) where we took shelter as it started to rain, which turned into our cue to head back to granada.
the highlights of our trip were most definitely the large quantities of non-spanish food we consumed (italian, oriental, you name it), the cute boys we encountered (mr. museum and our hostel roommate, william levy's more attractive argentinian twin), the sweet treats we always found an excuse to make room for, and good conversation. it was the perfect way to ring in a new school year. 

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