Monday, May 10, 2010

Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner.

Briana and I made it to London on Wednesday without much trouble. At least without much trouble until we got to customs where we had to wait for over an hour just to get to the front of the line. We passed the time by looking at Sue Sylvester quotes from Glee, our favorite television program, and reliving our hilarious experiences in Spain. When we finally made it through customs, Briana went to meet her mom and I got on the underground to go meet my dad. I got off at the Holborn stop and found my dad, then went to the hotel to put down my bags and get ready for dinner. We stayed at the Marriot Chancery Court Hotel, and I loved every second of it. Everyone was incredibly helpful and our rooms were so comfortable. For our first dinner in London, my dad and I went to About Thyme, which was recommended by my dad's favorite website: It was so nice to see my dad again and tell him all about Spain over some fabulous food. I had delicious french onion soup for an appetizer followed by chicken stuffed with ricotta and spinach for my main course. We spent a long time at dinner just looking through my pictures from my travels and catching up. By the time we were finished, we were both really tired and decided to go back to the hotel to pass out early in preparation for a big day of touring on Thursday.

Me and my dad at About Thyme

In the morning, my dad and I woke up fairly early to meet our tour guide, Glen. We met right outside of Big Ben to begin our tour. We spent the day listening to Glen talk about Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament, 10 Downing Street, Big Ben, Trafalgar Square and even saw the changing of the guards. Surprisingly, we saw all of this before lunch time, so we went to the National Portrait Gallery Portrait Restaurant at the top of the museum, where we ate lunch with amazing views of Trafalgar Square. After lunch, we looked around the museum for a while to see Paul McCartney's and Princess Diana's portraits. By the time we had done that, we were both exhausted and decided to take a little afternoon nap. When we had rested up, we got ready for dinner and then went to the London Eye. Although it was my second time on the London Eye, it was still incredible. It is so cool to see the city of London from the Eye because you get a 360 degree view. After the London Eye, my dad and I got in a cab to go to Central Fish for dinner. It was another TripAdvisor recommendation and it did not let us down. I had mussels to start and then had halibut as my main dish. My dad had the fish and chips, which he loved. After a long day, we headed back to the hotel for the night.

Me and my dad playing around in London

At Buckingham Palace

Goofing off with the guards

Westminster Abbey

My dad and me in the London Eye

On Friday, we woke up, had breakfast at our hotel and then made our way to Churchill's Cabinet War Rooms, which were left exactly the way they were when WWII was over. We could have spent days in that museum, there was so much interesting information about the war and about Churchill. I would definitely recommend it to anyone and plan on going back in the future. After the war rooms, we headed towards St. Paul's Cathedral. Before we went into the cathedral, we got lunch at Pod, a fast food thai restaurant with excellent curry. When we were done with that, we went into St. Paul's, where we climbed up to the Whispering Gallery to look over the entire church. It is called the Whispering Gallery because if you whisper into the wall, anyone at any point around the gallery can hear it. There were tons of parents and children whispering things to one another, seeing if they really could hear each other from across the dome. My dad wanted to try it to, but, having the maturity level of a 15 year old boy, he kept whispering "whispering eye." If you don't understand this reference, you should really watch Role Models with Paul Rudd, Sean William Scott and Jane Lynch.

At the Churchill Cabinet War Rooms

After St. Paul's Cathedral, we walked across the Thames to the Design Museum. We saw a very cool exhibit that included a BMW that was made from materials that can change shapes according to the owner's preferences. We had a long day of walking, and my feet were killing me, so we didn't spend much time at the Design Museum. We did stop by the gift shop on the way out, where my dad found a really cool poster of the museum. When we left, we walked along the the Thames for a little bit, but then decided to get a cab back to the hotel because I had blisters on practically all of my toes. That night, we went to a play, Dirty Dancing, which I absolutely loved. It was very close to the movie and the last scene had incredible dancing. Since we hadn't gone to dinner before the play, we went to Fire and Stone after the play was over. My dad and I ordered unusual pizzas, but they were amazing. Mine had a ton of veggies on it, and I absolutely inhaled it. After dinner, we just went back to the hotel and fell asleep around midnight.

We woke up around 8 on Saturday to go find a Foot Locker so that I could get tennis shoes that wouldn't make my feet feel like they were falling off. We walked around for a little bit and had to wait for Foot Locker to open, but when it did, it was totally worth it. I got some cute new tennis shoes that made me feel like I was walking on air. After that, we went to the Portobello Market, which is a street just filled with booths upon booths of antiques. It was insanely crowded, so my dad and I walked around for a little bit and then got out of there as fast as possible. We tried to go to Pod for lunch again, since we had enjoyed it so much the day before, but were disappointed to find that it is closed on weekends. We ended up just fine because we found a place called Paul, where we enjoyed sandwiches and the best blueberry torte we've ever eaten.

After lunch, we went back to the hotel to get ready for the football game we were going to. I put on my new tennis shoes and a warm sweatshirt and we made our way to the West Ham football stadium. Thanks to the concierge at our hotel, we had great seats and got to see an amazing game. West Ham won, 1 - 0. When the game was over, we went to the gift shop to look around and found some souvenirs for my brother. Then we tried to walk back to the underground to get back to our hotel. However, the line to get back on the train wound around the corner and would have taken almost an hour to wait in, so we decided to go look for a drink. Unfortunately, we were completely unsuccessful and ended up just walking back to the underground station, where they had opened up another door, making it really easy for us to get back on the train. The train was obnoxiously crowded, but we made it back just fine and got ready for a nice dinner at CÔTE, a restaurant that I went to with my mom and sister when we were in London in March. Here we enjoyed a long dinner of mussels and coq au vin, then went back to the hotel to rest up for our next day of touring with Glen.

Me and my dad at the West Ham football game

Me and dad outside CÔTE

On Sunday, we woke up early again to meet Glen for our second tour with him. We started this tour outside St. Paul's Cathedral, but since my dad and I had already gone inside, we didn't go in this time. Then we went to the Millennium Bridge and the Tower of London. We did a lot of the same stuff that I had done at the Tower of London when I went with my mom and sister, but this time we also got to see the armory. It was really interesting to see all the different suits of armor from the royal family throughout the years. After this, we went to The Monument, where Glen told us about the fire of London in 1666. Then Glen walked us over to the South Bank, where we saw the Leaky Cauldron and Diagon Alley from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, which I loved since I am a Harry Potter fanatic.

The Leaky Cauldron

Nugget Armor at the Tower of London

Me and my dad in front of Tower Bridge

We had lunch at The Anchor, and enjoyed a huge order of traditional fish and chips, as well as mushy peas. Then we walked over to the Tate Modern and spent some time looking at works by Jackson Pollock, Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol. We were both pretty exhausted from a long day and a very busy trip, so we went back to the hotel to rest before dinner. We had dinner at Matsuri Sushi and then headed to the hotel early to pack our bags for our next leg of the trip: Paris!

In the morning, we woke up early and made our way to the train station to catch the Chunnel, the train that goes from London to Paris under the English Channel. It is the longest undersea tunnel in the world. It only took about two hours to reach Paris, and in that time we were served a delicious breakfast and planned what sights we wanted to see in Paris, where we would meet up with my friend, Laura, for a few days.

Follow the Blue Wiener...

After a long night at Dubliner's in Madrid, Briana and I were not exactly in cheerful moods when it came time to get on the metro and go to the airport to make our flight to Barcelona. The flight wasn't bad, but once we arrived at the airport in Barcelona things took a turn for the worse. We had to take an hour long bus ride from Gironas (the airport we flew into) to the city center in Barcelona. This wouldn't have been bad had a satanic child not been on our same bus, just one row in front of us. At first, this child seemed adorable: chubby cheeks, curly hair, smiley. Lesson learned: never judge a book by its cover. As soon as the wheels started moving this child would not shut up. Screaming, crying and throwing his toy trucks were common occurrences. I think it's safe to say that as soon as the bus pulled into Barcelona, Briana and I were running to get off and away from that kid.

We navigated our way to Holly's apartment, where Ryan, Holly's hilarious gay roommate, buzzed us in. Holly, Michael and Peter were still on spring break and wouldn't be back until the next day, so Ryan showed us around the apartment and we made ourselves at home. Briana and I quickly realized we were starving, probably due to the immense amount of energy we spent trying to block out the annoying child we were seated next to on the bus. It was Easter Sunday, so we were worried about restaurants being open, but we had no trouble at all. We found a cute sidewalk cafe and ordered some delicious chicken sandwiches followed by a Spanish tradition: churros. We sat in the sun and enjoyed the weather and absence of screaming children. On the way back to Holly's, we stopped at an alimentación to grab some pasta for dinner and a couple bottles of cava, which is Spanish sparkling wine that the area of Catalonia is famous for. We practically sprinted home from the alimentación because it was about to storm. We made it back to Holly's just before it started pouring and unpacked, cleaned up and showered before figuring out how to meet up with Laura and her roommate from Boston College, Sarah.

Laura and Sarah eventually cabbed over to Holly's apartment and we just relaxed for the night with a giant pot of pasta and a few too many glasses of cava. Ryan, Holly's roommate, came back from a long dinner and entertained us with some hilarious stories of his time abroad. We could have listened to him all night, but we were all fighting heavy eyelids and decided it was time for bed instead. We made up the futon and all passed out until the next morning.

Since Sarah and Laura had been in Barcelona for a few days already, they had done most of the touristy things that Briana and I were planning to do, so Briana and I decided to push back our really touristy day and spent the day with Laura and Sarah in Park Güell, a famous park in Spain designed by Antoni Gaudí, who designed many buildings in Barcelona. The park looks like a mix between Alice in Wonderland and Candyland, all set on a huge hill in Barcelona. It is an absolutely incredible place full of mosaics and tons of stone. The park has many levels, and we hiked up near the top for some breathtaking views of the city. We could even see the blue wiener, which is actually the Agbar Tower, that we would always use as a landmark to make our way back to Holly's apartment. We also had some gorgeous views of the ocean.

Me and Briana at Park Güell

View of the Blue Wiener from Park Güell

Laura and Me in front of the house in Park Güell

Briana and Me in the entrance to Park Güell

When we were through with Park Güell, we decided it was time for a siesta by the water. We made our way to the pier, bought some Ben and Jerry's ice cream and sat in the sun, just relaxing. Michael, one of my oldest and best friends from St. Louis, decided to meet us at the pier to hang out for a little while. After a little confusion about our location, we finally tracked him down. He told us all about his spring break trips with Holly and Peter to the Canary Islands, Prague and Amsterdam and then told us about the plan for the night: Loco Lunes at a club called Otto Zutz. We had heard that the nightlife in Barcelona was crazy, so we were eager to gain first hand experience in that area. The pier started to get a little chilly, so we decided to end our siesta and go back to Holly's to get some dinner and get ready for a wild night.

View from the pier

All of us were in the mood for some comfort food, so we chose to forgo the traditional Spanish paellas and opted for the Hard Rock Cafe instead. The wait for a table was over an hour, so we went to the bar area and found a table there. About ten minutes after we sat down, we were joined by a surprise guest: Ryan, Holly's roommate. While we scarfed down our chicken fingers and mac & cheese, Ryan picked at his salad and told us all about his life. Our quick dinner turned into a two hour meal as we all nearly peed our pants laughing at Ryan's stories. By the time we finally made it back to Holly's, it was around 10:30 and we were rushing to get ready. Luckily, we were in Spain, where nights don't begin until 1 am, so we had no trouble getting ready to go and drinking our cava before making our way to Otto Zutz.

Sarah, Briana, Ryan, Me and Laura before Loco Lunes

Holly and Me before Otto Zutz

We walked into the club around 2 am and were greeted by huge hugs and shots from Michael. After graciously accepting both, we immediately headed to the dance floor, which was crowded with tons of people. I don't think we stopped dancing from the time we first stepped onto the dance floor until the lights came on in the club. We did, however, run into many different people from St. Louis, from Glasgow, and also from BC. The rumors about Barcelona nightlife were true. We had an insanely good time just drinking and dancing the night away. We finally got back to Holly's around 5:30 or 6 in the morning and were absolutely exhausted. Laura and Sarah were flying to Madrid the next morning, so they had to wake up around 8:30 to finish packing and leave for the airport. It was not a pretty morning, to say the least.

Me, Ryan and Holly at Otto Zutz

Michael and Me at Otto Zutz

Briana and I dragged ourselves out of bed around 11, when we got up, changed clothes and walked to Starbucks to get much needed caffeine into our systems. After waking ourselves up a little bit, Briana and I started on our tourist day. We began at La Pedrera, an apartment building designed by Antoni Gaudí, the same architect who designed Park Güell. Gaudí was very interested in organic shapes and gothic architecture. The outside of La Pedrera (which means "The Quarry" in Spanish) consists of tons of swirling and curvy stone, pretty much unlike anything I've ever seen. Briana and I waited our turn to go in the actual apartment and then to the rooftop of the building. The interior of the apartment was cool, but the rooftop was beyond amazing. I have no words to describe it, so the pictures will have to speak for me.

View of the Blue Wiener from La Pedrera

The rooftop of La Pedrera

Me with the rooftop

Exterior of La Pedrera

After La Pedrera, we walked to Sagrada Família, a Roman Catholic church designed by Gaudí. Sagrada Família has been under construction since 1882 and they don't expect it to be finished until at least 2026, which is the 100th anniversary of Gaudí's death. The church is incredibly intricate and detailed. There are carvings all over the facade. Just like the rooftop of La Pedrera, it is unbelievably difficult to try and put Sagrada Família into words. It is beautiful and so hard to describe. Briana and I waited in the hour-long line to take an elevator to the top of one of the towers, where we had views of all of Barcelona. There are 18 towers of different heights in the church that represent the 12 apostles, Jesus, Mary and the four evangelists. I am not sure which tower we went in, but it was gorgeous. We got some views of the interior of the church as well. Unfortunately, the interior is under massive construction, so it was difficult to imagine what it might look like when it is finished.

View from the top of Sagrada Família

Interior of Sagrada Família

Me at Sagrada Família

Exterior of Sagrada Família

When we were finished at Sagrada Família, Briana and I headed to La Rambla, which is a pedestrian mall full of little kiosks and stands selling everything you can imagine from tourist souvenirs to live chickens. The street was insanely crowded, so Briana and I found La Boqueria, a public market full of different food, where we stopped for some treats. They had fresh food of all kinds, including the most delicious looking fruit I have ever laid eyes on. Briana and I got individual servings of strawberries and enjoyed them as we walked around the market. Right as we were leaving the market we came across a stand we simply could not pass up: the chocolate stand. They had chocolates of all shapes, sizes and flavors. We spent a while picking out which chocolates we wanted and then handed them over to the woman running the stand to weigh. I'm not sure how much our sweets weighed, but I will admit that we ended up spending €22. Yikes!

La Boqueria

La Rambla

We were exhausted after little sleep and a long day of touring, so Briana and I walked back to Holly's. After Loco Lunes, we weren't exactly in the mood (or physical state) to be partying until 6 in the morning again, so we decided to have a low key night with Holly. Holly took me and Briana to Pim Pam Burger for dinner, where we sat and talked for a long time, probably reminiscing about high school a little too much, but it was a great night. When we got back to Holly's apartment, we packed and attempted to watch Summer Heights High. Unfortunately, we were all too tired to keep our eyes open through more than one episode, so Briana and I retreated to our bed and fell asleep.

In the morning, Briana and I woke up early, said bye to Holly and took the metro to where we thought we could pick up the bus to the airport. It was a little more trouble than we had anticipated to actually locate the bus and we were a little short on time, so we just grabbed a cab and took it to the airport, where we got on our flight to London, where I was meeting my dad and Briana was meeting her mom. We were sad to be leaving such a great country, but we were also ready for a more relaxed break than the one we had been having in Spain. Plus, we were excited to finally see our parents!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


After my one day back in Glasgow, I departed for Madrid on March 31. First, I flew to London and then flew from London to Madrid. I arrived in Madrid in the afternoon and met up with my friend David, who is studying in Madrid for the semester, soon after. He showed me around Madrid for a little while and we went to one of his favorite places, El Tigre. This bar is crazy and serves delicious mojitos in ridiculously huge cups. David and I each had our own mojito and enjoyed the tapas that come free with each drink. It was nice to sit and catch up with David after being apart for so long. After we finished our drinks, David walked me back to my hostel and he went back to his homestay for dinner while I showered and napped after an exhausting day.

When David was finished with dinner, he came back to my room while we got ready for a fun night out. Andrea, my roommate, had told me all the places to go in Madrid that she loved while studying there the previous semester. Orange was one of those places that Andrea had told me I needed to visit, so that was the goal of the night. David and I just hung out in the room for a while because the Spanish don't go out until late. When it was time, we decided to start the night out a little closer to my hostel and work our way to Orange. We were walking when we came across a bar called Ghetto. We looked at each other and knew that we needed to visit a place with such a great name. We walked into the bar and it was literally designed like a ghetto. After one drink, we decided it was time to go to the next spot. We walked to Liquid, another bar in the area, and stayed for a few drinks and chatted with some friendly Spaniards who wanted to practice their English. When we were finished at Liquid, we headed to another bar, where we pretty much spent the rest of the night and made friends with the bartenders, who gave us tons of free drinks. Since we were enjoying ourselves so much, we ended up skipping Orange and just going back to my hostel after one last bar in the area. The next day was a terror because my head was pounding and I was just exhausted.

David and our bartender friends

David and me at Liquid

Briana arrived the next day and so David and I went to meet her and her friend, Cara, in Plaza del Sol after a walk by the Mercado, Plaza Mayor, the Royal Palace of Madrid and its beautiful gardens. We found Briana and Cara in the crowded plaza and then decided to go to Retiro Park to try and ride the boats there. It was a gorgeous, sunny day in Madrid, so we wanted to just play outside and spend as much time in the beautiful weather as possible. We sat outside and visited for a long time, deciding not to ride on the boats because the line was absolutely ridiculous. After a while, David and I were hungry so we left Retiro Park in search of food. We looked for almost half an hour for a sushi restaurant to eat in, but were completely unsuccessful. We finally settled for Burger King, where we both enjoyed giant sandwiches. When our meal was over, we parted ways and Cara, Briana and I walked back to our hostel to get ready to go out for the night.

The Gardens at the Royal Palace

El Mercado

Plaza Mayor

Symbol of Madrid in Plaza del Sol

David and me in Retiro Park

Briana and I got ready while watching the only American channel in Madrid and drinking white wine that we bought from an alimentacion by our hostel. Cara came over and we drank our wine and talked until it was time to go out. We started the night in Plaza del Sol and used Cara's connections to get into a few clubs. Since it was Easter weekend, not many people were at the clubs, so we decided to go to Orange, the bar I hadn't made it to earlier in the week. When we got to Orange, there were literally about eight people there, so we decided to leave and meet Liam and his friends at Pacha, another club. When we got to Pacha, we paid the outrageously expensive cover (€16) and went inside. We had finally succeeded in finding a good time, and were ready to dance. Liam and his friends showed up shortly after us, and we spent the night dancing and drinking and having an overall good time. By the end of the night, we were tired and our feet were killing us, so we went back to the hostel to pass out.

The next day, we slept in and then went to the bakery across the street for some chocolate croissants for breakfast. We ate those on the way to the Royal Palace of Madrid, where we waited in line for a long time before getting in to tour the palace. The palace was incredible. The furnishings were lush, full of rich, red velvets and lots and lots of gold. It was just gorgeous. After touring the palace, we went to the Prado Museum. The museum is home to many famous paintings, so we decided to just look at the masterpieces we all learned about in art history. While searching for the real masterpieces, we came across some hilarious pieces of art including breast milk squirting into people's mouths, midgets and extremely fat children. We spent a few hours in the Prado and then got hot chocolates at a cafe nearby. On our walk home, we got caught in an Easter procession and literally could not walk or even move an inch. The crowd eventually pushed us through and we made it back to our hostel, where we changed and headed out for a quick dinner at a sandwich place in the neighborhood.

Briana and me in front of the Royal Palace of Madrid

The Prado Museum

A Nugget from the Prado

We got ready with our cheap white wine and American television again before going to Dubliners, an Irish pub. Briana and I felt like we were back in Glasgow when we walked in and saw the drink specials included Bulmers and Magners ciders. The bar got crowded quickly, so we grabbed a table and hung out there for the night. One of the bartenders/bus boys, Lorenzo, that worked there had a crush on me, so he was talking to us for most of the night. Liam and his friends showed up at Dubliners later, and so we all hung out and drank for a while. At 3 am, the bar closed and Briana and I went home because we had a flight to Barcelona in the morning and also because Lorenzo was asking me to go home with him, which I was absolutely not going to do.

In the morning, Briana and I finished our packing, said our goodbyes to David and Cara and got on the metro to make our way to the airport to get to our next destination.

The Belle of Belfast City

After I left London, I flew to Belfast to visit Alan, Laura's flatmate. The flight was pretty short and very easy, which was nice considering I had to wake up around 4 am to get to the airport on time. I also got to finish the book I was reading, Nicholas Sparks' The Last Song, and ended up just bawling my eyes out on the plane. Luckily the flight was pretty empty, so not many people got to witness the scene I made. When I got off the plane, Alan was waiting for me and, since Laura wasn't going to get there for another hour or so, we drove around and then went for a walk by the sea. It was an absolutely gorgeous day, so it was great to just relax and walk by the water. After our walk, we got back in the car and went looking for somewhere to eat. Unfortunately, it was Sunday so nothing was open before noon, so we just went to Spar to grab some snacks and sat in the car eating them. When Laura called to say that she had finally landed, we went to start the car up to go pick her up, but since we'd been sitting in the car for so long, the battery had died! Thank goodness Alan's mom was in the area and came and picked us up so that we could get Laura from the airport.

After the car fiasco, we took the train into Belfast and walked around the city. We went for a ride in the Wheel of Belfast, which is a lot like the London Eye, but much smaller. We also saw the Belfast City Hall, an absolutely gorgeous building. Then we did a little shopping when we stopped in TopShop, where I bought a few things including some Converse sneakers that I had been wanting for a while. Then we took the train back to meet Alan's dad to get the car started so that we could drive to Islandmagee, where Alan lives. Once we got to Alan's house, we cleaned up a little bit and then went to visit his uncle's house because his uncle's sheep had just had lambs, so we got to see the newborn lambs. After we visited with the animals and Alan's cousins, aunt and uncle, we went to the The Rhinka to get some ice cream. I tried honeycomb ice cream and loved it.

Belfast City Hall

The Wheel of Belfast

A Lamb from Alan's Uncle's Farm

After our ice cream, we went to the beach and got some gorgeous views of Islandmagee. It was an absolutely beautiful day, so we just hung out and played around on the beach, spending as much time outside as possible. When we were done on the beach, we went back to Alan's house to enjoy the traditional Sunday roast his mom had cooked for us. It was incredibly delicious and we were surprised in the middle of dinner when Alan's dad told us that one of the cows was calving, so we dropped our forks and knives and headed outside to the barn to watch a cow being born. It was truly something I never thought I'd witness, but was still very cool to see. When that was over, we just went back to the dinner table and finished eating the homemade pavlova that Alan's mom gave us for dessert. That night, we went out with Alan and his friends. We spent the night at a bar, sitting outside under the heating lamps, drinking cider and getting to know everyone.

The next day, we woke up and began the journey to The Giant's Causeway, which is the UK's fourth greatest natural wonder. The Giant's Causeway is created of a bunch of basalt columns, which are formed when lava cools after a volcanic eruption. The legend behind the area is that an Irish warrior named Finn McCool built the causeway to go fight his rival in Scotland, but when Finn got to Scotland and saw who he was supposed to fight, he got scared and went back home to his wife. When the Scottish warrior went looking for Finn, Finn's wife dressed him as a baby and pretended that Finn was her son. So, when the Scottish warrior arrived, he took one look at the "baby" and thought to himself that if the baby was that large, the father of that child must be an absolute giant. Thus, the Scottish warrior fled the country and tore up the causeway behind him so that Finn could never come and fight him. We hiked in the area for over an hour and took in some extremely amazing views. We also had lunch at the cafe there before we made our way to the Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge, which is the smallest bridge in Northern Ireland.

The View from our Hike at Giant's Causeway
Laura, me and Alan at The Giant's Causeway

The Giant's Causeway

When we got to the rope bridge, I was pretty nervous because I have a huge fear of heights. We started the hike to the bridge and then I decided that I was absolutely not going anywhere near it. It had started to rain and everything was getting pretty slick, so it was definitely not an ideal condition for crossing a tiny rope bridge. While Alan and Laura walked to the other side, I relaxed and took in the beautiful sea, which, surprisingly, was clear and blue, just like any water you'd find in a tropical location. It was absolutely gorgeous. When Laura and Alan were done crossing the bridge, we got back in the car for the nearly three hour drive back to Islandmagee.

Laura and Alan crossing the rope bridge

View from the rope bridge

When we got back, we went to The Rhinka to get some more ice cream. Then we headed back to his house to get ready for dinner and another night out with Alan's friends. Alan treated Laura and I to dinner at a restaurant near his house and then we went back and hung out at his house for a while until his friend picked us up and drove us to a bar where Alan's other friend works. Since it was a Monday night, it wasn't very crowded but we enjoyed ourselves. We didn't stay out too late because Laura and I had a flight in the morning, but when we got home we did enjoy the movie PS I Love You and Laura and I obviously wished for our own Gerard Butlers.

In the morning, we got up and flew back to Glasgow, where we'd have one day before the rest of our spring break journeys would begin.