WE'RE GOING TO OKTOBERFEST!
This is where it all started: an e-mail from Natasha to which I replied and the rest, as they say, is boring. This one, therefore, is technicially not mine (nor actually mine at all) but is crucial to what followed. Enjoy.
Sent 3 October 2001 from Barcelona
Quoting Natasha Martincic
> Hi everyone!
> Sorry about the the mass email, it starts to get expensive if a I write to each of you, and I'm going to tell you all the same thing anyway...oh, and if you don't want to receive updates about our trip, just let me know! :)
> Well where can I start...we're finally leaving Spain tomorrow after 4 glorious weeks exploring this fantastic country. I could rave about Spain for ages, I loved everything about it, especially the food! I can't believe I thought I would lose weight when travelling!
> Someone once told me that the most important thing about travelling is experiencing the cuisine of a country and meeting locals because they are the things you can't see on TV or read in a book. Well, we're taking this advice to heart and are only eating where the locals eat (not McDonalds or some of the other horrible places some backpackers have to resort to). I even bought a Spanish cookbook so when I get home I could try and make some of the wonderful dishes I'm addicted to here (eg: gazpacho, tortilla, crochettes, any tapas and boccadios - yum!)
> One of the interesting things about Spain is that most of it is dry and barren. The only trees they have (that I've seen) are millions of olive trees, orange trees and the occasional gum tree! Having said this, we were quite surprised when we reached the Basque region (San Sebastian, Bilbao, etc) because in comparison to the rest of Spain, it is lush with mountains, trees, and wildlife.
> Another thing that surprised me about Spain is that most of their famous buildings are actually Moorish, especially in the south. Moorish architecture is one of the most beautiful I have ever seen and it's a shame that these buildings were not better preserved in the past when the Christians took over Spain again...but, I won't get into that one!
> Riley and I are buying English newspapers regularly to keep informed about the 'war against terrorism' (mostly because we can't understand any of the news on TV). Like us, many backpackers we've met have had to change their travel plans due to warnings from their respective embassy about entering Islamic countries before we know how America will retaliate (eg: will they just bomb Afganistan or will they try a different tactic this time?) The British newspapers are convinced that Britain will be the next country to be attacked by Bin Laden's followers, which is making us slightly nervous about setting up base there for a couple of months...at least we have another 2 months of travelling continental Europe before we reach the UK again, so we can make our decision then (see Mum I am being careful, no need to worry!)
> Tomorrow we're leaving for Munich because we've realised that we can make the final days of Oktoberfest!! Many beers in store for us I think! ;)
> After Munich we're retracing our path back to the south of France and north of Italy so that we can spend some time there before we finally reach Slovenia (can't wait to go there!!)
> Oh and for those of you who may be interested, Riley is growing a beard (which he's never done before). I managed to convince him to cut his hair because it was turning into a scary afro, but no matter how much I gently coax him (ok, some people may call it nagging), I still haven't managed to convince him to get rid of the beard! Oh well, at least he's having fun with it.
> After the haircut he had to trim the beard because looking like 'Grisly Adams' didn't suit the short hair. And today, he shaved the hair on his chin, so now he has a 'handle-bar' goatee (imagine the side burns connecting with the moustache! Scary, I know!) The wierd thing is that his beard is not the same colour as his hair, it's mostly got light brown and twinges of orange/blonde in it (and a few grey hairs which he's calling blonde!)
> Okay enough about Riley's beard..
> Hope you're all doing well. Missing you all. Let me know what's new in your lives.
> Take care!!
> Love lots
> Tasha :)