This is it. The final post from my nomad adventures. Let’s look at the stats.
Nomad from June 1st – December 10th, 2019. 193 days. Number of Stays 25.
If we take out June and July where I stayed at one place, I have 132 days, 24 stays, for an average of 5.5 days per stay. This is more what it feels like looking back.
Not entirely unexpected, I didn’t find a landing place during my travels. No regrets, I had an amazing time, met all kinds of interesting people, experienced extraordinary meditations and saw breathtaking beauty.
I met a couple during the cruise (my fellow martini bar mates, hope you read this and reach out) who are planning to do a year abroad in three month stints each place. That sounds good to me. Or perhaps just a month away, three home, repeat. Europe is in my future. I’m not rushed.
On to my final nomad travel series post.
My cruise returned to Barcelona Sept 30th, 2019. Waiting for me was long time friend Adrian King. He takes amazing photos. You should check him out. AdriansBoots on Instagram and Website. A British expat living in the US and thinking it’s time to flee, he was also scouting places to possibly relocate to, so we joined forces for a few weeks. From the port we headed to the airport to fetch his daughter, Chloe, who hung out with us a few days. She’s amazing. Perhaps I’ll try and wrangle an interview out of her someday.
We spent almost a week exploring Barcelona and some additional day trip locations.
First up, a road trip to France. Argeles-sur-Mer to be exact, we checked out a flat that Adrian found online. Great beach etc. but not enough in walking distance for my taste.
France is beautiful. Period.
Fun things you get to say when traveling: Do you want to eat in France or Spain? We chose France and ate in Cebere.
I love France. The coastal roads taxed my carsick tendencies to be sure, but we made it.
It’s interesting, doing a quick search for a link to use above for Argeles-sur-Mer I was struck by how beautiful it is. Or at least by how beautiful it looks in those images. Perhaps, being surrounded by all this beauty for weeks on end anesthetizes you to its charm. In the same way graffiti in cities soon fades. At first it’s appalling and painfully obvious, but after a time, you don’t even see. Anyway, I think Adrian should take that flat this summer, and invite me.
Another day trip was south to Sitges and Terragona.
This is the beach at Sitges. I could live here for awhile at least. Lot’s of the prerequisite restaurants and cafes. Small and lovely, and not too far from BCN airport. It’s not cheap, but those views…
Terragona was nice as well, but larger. Just depends on what you’re looking for.
As for Barcelona so much to explore! You must check out La Rambla. Not the street, in my opinion, but the Gotic Quarter behind it. Miles of alleys and shops and food and shiny things. Just remember to hold on to your belongings. In case you missed the adventure, my friend Ali, who joined me for a time, had her purse stolen in Valencia. You can read about it here: Valencia and Score One for the Asshats.
Barcelona is known for being a hot spot for (thankfully) mostly nonviolent crime.
Don’t miss out on a tour! You will not regret it. We took an amazing one of Old Town (Gotic!) and La Sagrada Familia. Our guide, Suzie, was amazeballs. Can’t recommend her enough. Here’s her link: Barcelona Tours by Locals.
So much interesting architecture in Barcelona. Suzie covered all this brilliantly.
For La Sagrada, go around sunset if possible. The light through the stained glass is awe inspiring. Suzie timed everything perfectly.
I’d been warned about the proper dress code. Having once been kicked out of the Domo in Lago Como, I was prepared. I need not have. The dress code seems to have loosened up. A lot.
And, of course, it’s probably illegal to miss a Flamenco experience.
We said goodbye to Barcelona October 6th, and set off on a road trip that would take us to Bilbao via lunch in San Sebastian.
Over four hundred miles, it was a long, interesting drive. From the relative sparsity of vegetation along the Mediterranean coast, through the plains, and into the dense and lush region of Northern Spain and Bay of Biscay off the Atlantic. The change of scenery was fantastic.
A couple hours in I realized something odd. There were tons of farms. Everywhere. But not a single animal. No cows, sheep, chickens…It was as though someone had forgotten to enable the “Farm Animal” program in our simulation. We spent hours looking as we drove and found nothing till just after the half-way point. Someone must have realized their mistake. Lol.
Another interesting tidbit was the lack of traffic up north. The A15 and GI-11 are wide, beautiful highways adorned with large art installations and some lovely facades on the tunnel entrances. But no traffic. It felt has if it had been built (and still being built in the most northern region) for the Olympics or something. Perhaps it’s far more crowded during the winter ski season.
I fell hard for San Sebastian. Absolutely stunning. It even has it’s own little bay complete with beach.
After lunch we took the coastal road for a number of miles. Another challenging car ride, but beautiful.
We took the coastal road for a number of miles. Another challenging car ride, but beautiful.
The bottom right of the collage has the other side of the bay above.
Northern Spain is like the Pacific North West. Lush, green and wet.
Bilbao was also beautiful. Larger than San Sebastian it may have more to offer at a lower price point. We stayed in old town and it was perfection.
You can’t miss the Guggenheim even if you don’t go in.
After a Bilbao we continued west then south to Santiago de Compostela. The end of the trail for the Camino de Santiago Pilgrimage. I’ve never seen so many hikers in one place before. It was a constant stream. They come from all over the world, and walk for days or weeks depending upon where they started. Needless to say, they’re pretty damn tired at the end.
Next, we drove south back into Portugal and arrived in stunning Porto. We stayed across the Duoro river in Porto Gaia which was perfect. The views were heavenly. Porto is another favorite for sure. Like Lisbon, you best be ready for some serious hills if you want to get by the river. Love, love, love.
Needless to say, there was lots of Port to sample. We did admirably.
Abandoned spaces have always intrigued me and Porto delivers.
I hope to return to Porto and San Sebastian someday.
There’s a little mom and pop shop that’s totally worth the trip. Boemia Bar and Restaurant. Check it out.
Adrian and I parted ways then as he headed back to the states. After some reflection during my trip I decided to return to Malaga.
I chose a small sea-side town of Torre Del Mar. By the time I got back in late October, the entire demographic had shifted. Gone were the thriving, beach-loving crowds to be replace by the year-round residents. Mostly post retirees and young families. I wondered if I should have stayed in old town Malaga, but I was committed to the Airbnb and everything for a reason.
My personal Eat, Pray, Love morphed into Eat, Meditate, Research.
Abraham Hicks got me through a horrid time in life, but the engineer in me longed for substance.
I had become obsessed with exploration of the nexus between science and spirituality. In that respect Torre Del Mar was perfect. Quiet with miles of beach and paved walks to explore while deep in thought.
I spent my weeks with the likes of Bruce Lipton, Dr. Joe Dispenza, Lynne McTaggart, and Gregg Braden. Different modalities, same results. You can find a ton of free information on Youtube, and their own links above. More about them in a future post.
My last three nights in Spain were back in old town Malaga. So very worth a visit if you’re on the Costa Del Sol.
It’s chilly mid-November and windy as hell. Beautiful, nonetheless.
My two final nights in Europe were back in Lisboa and then it was US bound, back to St. Petersburg FL from where I had departed.
I stayed in an AirBnb through the holidays to be near my Ex and off-spring, but there’s something about this place. The people and energy are wonderful. I decided it was time to stop for a while. A year at least.
I’m two blocks from the water and we get some pretty amazing sunrises.
Where the quantum meets spirituality has become something of a quest. One I wish to share. You’ll be hearing more about it via both a non-fiction book and a new series. You’ll need to sign up for my Newsletter to hear about new releases. Head on over to SabinePriestley.com and sign-up on the top right.
For now, I’m settled in, fired up, and ready to work.
Thank you for coming with me on my nomad adventure. I’m posting on Instagram and some Facebook about St. Pete. It’s a great place. Follow along! @SabinePriestley
Wishing everyone love and light,