The Worst Vacation Day Ever...
Sevilla Travel Blog› entry 4 of 12 › view all entries
When one thinks of Spain they think of a thriving culture with great cities, beaches, and interesting locales with many dialects of the Spanish language. When I think of Spain I think of the day when Hell froze over and overflowed on my first day of vacation...
It is the late night, I actually believe it was midnight, and a group of four (to include: myself, Preston aka: Postcard, Matt, and a friend we met on the plan trip named Kris) of us get off at a sleepy little air base in Moron Spain; YES MORON Spain. That name would prove to be a very poignant point as the story progresses. The people that work the small terminal are American and don't seem to have a clue what they are doing nor can they give us any advice on anything, they probably didn't even know where the toilet was.
First issue we realize is that no one is there to stamp our passports, the second issue we realize is that we don't know where to go to get out of Moron Spain. All we know that it is south of Sevilla, which is most likely the closest location with a modern metropolis where we can move on from.
We get out of the exccessivly frustrating airport terminal, where I am spewing, pretty much every bad word in the English language when we find that there is no transportation anywhere to be found. At this point is where infamous photo number 1 comes to play. I would post these but I have a feeling that the Trav Buddy webmaster wouldn't appreciate it.
We get to the hotel and this is the only silver linning highlight to the entire story and find that the woman behind the counter speaks very good english and is willing to help. Thank God Halleluiah... At this point we are able to find out why we couldn't get our passports stamped, and on top of that she coordinates with the local police station for us to drive into town to get our passprts stamped so that we wouldn't miss the morning bus to Sevilla at 8:00AM. At this point we thought we were good to hook, and we were able to get a cab into town to get the passports stamped. This was a fairly straight forward from here except that I was kinda annoyed with the 60 dollar cab fare and the unbearable smell of the cab driver, but I guess you can't have everything.
We get back to the hotel where we hang out in the lobby and use there internet to find out train times and availability.
Sidenote: At this early point we were planning to make a trip up to Barcelona, and dance between the borders of Spain and France visiting the cities. Those plans, although quickly 180'D on us.
I am pouring of the internet and finding little luck. The Spainish train system is different from the rest of Europe and therefore difficult. Postcard starts to sulk about how the vacation looks like it is already turning in a poor direction, and of course, me being frustrated, I light him up telling him to go cry somewhere else. I felt slightly bad but he was annoying me and I was exhausted at the time. I bought breakfast to make up later.
We finally settled on a 10:00AM train out of Sevilla, which seemed like the best bet. With a 2 hour lead time and a 1 hour bus ride we figured that it might be smooth sailing. We of course were again wrong... 8:00 waiting for the bus... 8:10 waiting for the bus... 8:15 I start cussing about the late bus, 8:20 Infamous photo number 2 is taken while I cuss about the late bus. 8:30AM, the "Freaking" Bus finally makes it. We get on and we all calm down. We'll have a 30 minute head start on the train so we are still in the green. At this point I thought things might finally go our way and we could start enjoying this trip to Europe. Again, this seemed to be a trend, I was very wrong.
As we start to near the city of Sevilla, I realize the first significant issue; traffic jam. At this point I get concerned but we moved through it okay and figured that we would still be okay, until we started making stops to drop off passengers. If you have never been to Sevilla, then I should explain that the roads, when not on the highway, are severly restrictive, especially for a significantly large bus. The size of the vehicle didn't help but stopping at each passengers unique home made the situation impossible. At this point I pretty much knew we were not going to make it, so when we get closer to the interior of the city we scrambled off the bus and ran for a cab. We cought a cab and arrived at the train station at 9:55AM.
We blew into the train station and head to the closest information desk. By the time we get to the front of the line it is after 10 AM and we pretty much are trying to get a train at a later time. The others are looking at the boards trying to decipher the confussion but with no success. Kris, and I start to talk to the person at the information counter who I guess only knows the word "Full" in English. Next train to Barcelona? "FULL." Train to Madrid? "FULL." Train anywhere "FULL." Are you GAY? "FULL."
At this point I am pretty much hitting a boiling rage and it is yet again time for Infamous photo number 3. All four of us decide that it is time to head to airport and make a last attempt to get out of the black hole now known as Sevilla, Spain. At least it was for us.
We arrive at the airport and Kris and I are still cussing about the guy at the train station, thinking about what we would do to him if we were stuck here. We wouldn't have done anything, but it was a nice way to vent off the frustration.
At the airport we hit, I believe, every kiosk in the airport. We had plenty of options... Berlin, Munich, Prague, Rome, London... The only issue was that every plane ticket was going to cost between 500 and 1000 euros. Annoyed but not thwarted we continued to search. Somemembers of the party started to get a defeatist attitude but Kris and I continued forward until we finally hit Click Air which had tickets for 100 euros at about 3:00 in the afternoon to Paris. There is a GOD!!! We immediatly grab them congratulating ourselves as the "Greatest thing since sliced bread."
With the tickets in hand we head to the only place in the airport where we can drink and eat and proceed to drink excessivily and laugh at ourselves for this ludicrous day. We each bought full trays of beers. We definitly looked like the American s in the airport, but at that point we didn't care and were trying to unwind. We didn't know yet of some of the future pitfalls that we would run into.
The rest of the vacation really was memorable and there was a lot of fun to be had, but what I learned from this experience is when you travel to Europe plan ahead or prepare for pain and suffering, or a really good story.