I once again had only 4 hours sleep last night as I woke up at 6:30am in order to catch the 8am bus from Madrid to Granada.

I thought I had left myself enough time to get to the bus depot but alas I only arrived 5 minutes before the bus was departing and to top it off the bus was sold out.   Of course, if I was able to book it online the night before I would have had a seat but I digress…

So I waited in the bus terminal for 2 1/2 hours til the next bus left.   Hanging out in a bus terminal with a huge backpack – the more glamorous aspects of backpacking.

The bus ride was 5 hours long and I spent most of it watching Braveheart on my laptop so I was fairly entertained a big portion of the trip.

I finally arrived at the hostel around 4pm and first looks were very impressive.   It has a nice big courtyard in the middle and is actually a collection of apartments stylized into dorms.   Each room has a bunch of beds, a kitchen, a couch and a bathroom.   Kind of nice having our own bathroom (even if I’m still sharing it) and our own kitchen.

Arriving in town in the afternoon is literally the kiss of death as everyone is always out during the day so you end up in an empty hostel with no idea where to go and what to do.

Thankfully the front desk clerk, Rebecca, was super helpful and spent a good amount of time going through the map with me.

I also found out that tonight they were having free sangria (normally done on Saturdays but they were doing it tonight for a couple on their honeymoon) followed by a tapas tour.   Perfect!   I didn’t have to wander around alone looking for something to do and I would be able to meet my fellow travelers.

At 7:30 I headed to the courtyard and met up with about a half dozen other guests enjoying the free sangria. There was Nate (the first Canadian I’ve met so far), Mal & Leo (the aforementioned honeymooners from Melbourne), Kendall (a girl from Perth studying in France), and Sophie, Benoit and Rory (travelers working temporarily at the hostel).

After sitting around drinking and chatting for awhile we finally decided to head out on our tapas tour.

Enter the unusual…

The first sign that the tapas tour would be, ah, different was the fact that it was being led by Benoit.   Don’t get me wrong – super nice guy.   He’s from Belgium and doesn’t normally lead the tour.   He took us to, of all places, a Moroccan tapas bar.   Yes – I was eating Moroccan food in Spain.

And that was the end of the tour.   We were going to go to another more authentic place when Sophie and Rory showed up to lead us to a Bob Dylan concert.

Hey c’mon – how can I pass on a Bob Dylan concert in Spain.

Four of us along with 3 people working at the hostel all went into the neighborhood to this little tavern where the man covering Dylan would be playing.

He wasn’t starting for 15 minutes so the four of us (myself, the newlyweds and Kendall) headed down the street to this obscure little empty tapas bar.   This place was definitely off the beaten tourist path and our waiter spoke as much English as I speak Spanish – in other words – none.   After many failed attempts at communicating our order I finally just pointed at the chalkboard at 4 different tapas not knowing at all what we would be getting or how much it would cost.

In the end, the food was great and we received 2 drinks and 4 tapas for the ridiculous price of 5 euros.   Seriously – how do these businesses make money?

We headed back to the Dylan show and caught the tail end of it.   We missed the man singing Dylan by himself but instead saw him joined by different people on stage jamming with their guitars singling Dylan.   It was a most unique and entertaining experience.

By the time the show ended it was midnight and unlike in Madrid the streets were empty and it was time to head back to the hostel.

Who would have thought my first night in Granada would consist of free sangria, honeymooners, a fellow Canadian, a one stop tapas “tour”, Moroccan tapas and a Bob Dylan concert?

Can’t wait to see what tomorrow has in store…

Euro Trip 2013, Granada, Spain Trip Journal
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