Here’s my next set of adventures!!!!!
The past few weeks have been a flip-flop between fun and study.
I’ve been busy, busy, busy sight-seeing the past few days, so I used to day to just relax my mind and body and prepare for my next international vacation… Barcelona!
About this trip. I’m extremely excited, but a bit nervous. One, because I’ll be traveling by myself. And two, because my hostel emailed me yesterday informing that the days I will be there there is going to be a metro strike. This means public transportation will be limited. It’s not exactly unfamiliar because this happened when I visited Rome, but it’s still not ideal. My hostel gave me the metro schedule and luckily (unlike Rome) it will be open for some parts of the day and all other public transportation including the streetcar and city buses will be running as normal. Traveling in Europe has taught me one important thing: check for strikes and accommodate accordingly. Strikes occur quite frequently by public transportation workers in parts of Europe so you have to be prepared and flexible if/when these things come up. I’m so glad my hostel informed me ahead of time.
Yesterday I took a solo trip to Gozo, a smaller island that sits right next to Malta (also called a “sister island”). Sometimes it can be frustrating when there’s no one to go with me, but honestly, getting to explore beautiful parts of the city is very peaceful and relaxing — you notice things you ordinarily wouldn’t notice; you think about things you normally wouldn’t think about…you just get time to explore and reflect without the distraction of others.
Anyways, when I got to Gozo, I took the bus to Azure Window and Victoria, the capitol of Gozo. Azure Window is a natural monument that makes the shape of a hugeeeee upside down U. You can walk on top of it, and it’s surrounding area is rocky and tan. The waves that hit against the cliffs are beautiful. I don’t know how to describe, it was just an extremely cool place and I’m SO glad I went.
Next, I went to Victoria, which is the capitol of Gozo. It had an outdoor market, cute restaurants, and nice shops. I bought quite a few gift items in a cool little shop! They had food items like olive oils and seasonings. I tried their Gozitan coffee (I don’t even like coffee!) and it was amazing. I bought some, just for memory-sake.
After my little Victorian adventure, I took the bus back to the ferry, took the ferry back to Malta, then took the bus (again) back to the residence. Here are some photos of Gozo:
Sunday I decided to take a dive in the Mediterranean Sea. A little dive site called Ghar Lapsi, to be exact. This is one of my favorite places to swim outside of Golden Bay and Blue Lagoon, even though there isn’t much space or lounging. The area near Ghar Lapsi reminds me of those old western movies… I’ve never been to Australia, but it kind of reminds me of Austraila haha. Here is a picture of me floating in the water:
When I got back from swimming, I was starving. Abeed (my flat mate who is an Indian food chef) was busying studying, so for the first time I tried to make curry for myself. I succeeded and it was AMAZING. He was so proud of me. If nothing else, that’s one thing that I want to keep when I go back to the States, an open mind to try new things (including foods). Who would have thought that I would be eating sushi and cooking Indian food by the end of my trip. Having the courage to live outside of your comfort zone has great rewards. It expands your mind and grows you as a person.
Another one of my recent adventures was my swim trip to St. Peters Pool (I know, I’ve been taking a TON of swim trips!). I went with a bunch of Irish ladies and some others. Quick overview: This area is called a “pool” but it’s actually just a low-level cliff that’s safe for jumping and swimming (unless it’s Windy). Here is a picture:
Guess what…… I jumped…… I jumped off the ledge! I was so scared to do it but it was so fun and invigorating. Believe it or not, this was my first time being fully immersed in the sea. I know, you would have thought that I would have done that a long time ago considering I am on an island, but nope.
I went on two escapades on Friday — Blue Grotto and Golden Bay rafting. Blue Grotto is a cave that has extremely blue water. You can only get to it by specialty riding on the specialty, colorful Maltese boats (too far and too dangerous to swim). It was UHHHMAAAZZZZZING. Seriously, SO BLUE. You could see little jellyfish swimming around in the photos. Another crazy thing that happened is after we finished our Blue Grotto ride, my adventurous friend jumped off of a cliff (not a safe or short one like St. Peter’s Pool, which I mentioned earlier). I’m not gonna lie, I was scared for her. But she made it out… as she always does during her risky adventures. Here are some Blue Grotto photos:
In the late afternoon/evening I went kayaking at Golden Bay Beach. My flat mate and I kinda didn’t follow the rules and we went way past the line they tell you not to cross. In fact, we kayaked to two other nearby beaches. We kayaked over to two other bays and went past some beautiful rocks and cliffs. It was extremely tired, so we took a few breaks in the middle of the sea. My flat mate jumped off the kayak, but I was too scared to do that because of the deep waters. It was my first time getting that deep in the water.
I was in class-mode during the week. Wednesday I had class so I went to campus early to do some homework. I also met with my photography professor and she seemed much more please, and much less harsh about my ideas and preparation for my photography project *wipes forehead.*
I’ve been working diligently to complete my final essays and I finally turned in my last final Monday and am ecstatic! All of my assignments are complete after hours and hours of editing and writing, and now I can relax until my departure date. Reflecting, I still can’t believe I have lived a real-life fairytale and that I’m not only surviving but LOVING my time here. All of my fears were just bogus negative thoughts trying to psych me out of all that God has for me. How silly I would have been not to go! I don’t want this fairytale to end.
I think that’s about it for this week. I hope you enjoy the photos.