You’re Going to Crave It…

You’re Going to Crave It…

You’re going to crave slow roasted chicken, beef, or lamb tajines on the rooftops overlooking Morocco, the fresh and perfectly seasoned roasted vegetables, and the happiness of knowing that while Calvin is blogging, he’s not eating, so there’s more to go around…



The warm, fresh bread that came out with every meal, the crisp glass bottle refreshments that felt so novel and for some reason, more delicious than fountain or plastic, and the unspoken permission the paper table “cloth” afforded you to get messy while you eat…



You’re going to crave this couscous: the meal made by our own group under the guidance of our gracious hosts, and the generous portions allowed to all.


You probably won’t crave french fries, but you’ll crave the various skewered meat pictured next to it.



You will definitely crave slow cooked tajines.

You’ll double crave this couscous skewered meat combination. At a certain point I had no idea what kind of meat I was eating, but it was so good, even if I was eating the pigeons I saw some kids outside clutching in their hands, I really wouldn’t have cared. I will crave pigeons if pigeons is what I ate. And you will too.



You already started craving the eggplant dish that comes in the Moroccan 6 dish appetizer at Cafe Souk 20 minutes after we finished eating it, so you’ll crave it again. Next time, we’ll order a 12 dish appetizer.



You’ll miss the fresh squeezed natural fruit juices; not too sweet, not too sour, but just right. And paired with smoking shisha on yet another rooftop watching the sunset to the sounds of the adhan. Yea, you’ll definitely crave it.



Is anyone even reading my captions? Or are you just looking at the food pictures?



You will crave all the food that we didn’t order on the menu because we only had 8 people to feed, and the idea of not knowing what you were gonna get or maybe what anything on the menu meant, but trusting that it would be an experience itself, whether it was delicious or not (mostly delicious, though). 



You will crave this. Even though it looks like a sausage egg Mcmuffin without the egg and cheese, trust me. It’s not. And going to McDonald’s will not satiate your craving for this street vendor lamb wrapped in bread. Not by a long shot. On the other hand, there is a Moroccan food truck that I’ve been stalking in L.A, if you want to visit…



You will crave alternating biting out of the above mentioned lamb, and drinking this soup. (But you will not miss having to share it with 7 other people).



You will crave the fresh fruit (but not the ones you picked off of the tree in Spain… those were gross).



You will crave Moroccan whiskey. Even if you sipped it during an awkward lecture concerning the fate of the irresponsible future generations of Muslim youth.



Calvin will crave what was apparently the world’s most arousing ice cream.



You will crave free tapas with a drink order in Granada, and the tinted rosa. How can something so alcoholic be so delicious?



You will crave rice pudding, cheesecake, mango ice cream, and other desserts from the world’s oldest restaurant. You will definitely crave the rice pudding since I stole it and ate most of it. Sorry. ^_^;;



You will crave the slow roast pig from the world’s oldest restaurant, even though I was disappointed it didn’t come out a full pig with an apple in its mouth.



You will crave beer with Hemingway.



I don’t remember what this is but you will crave dipping bread in it.


You will crave the jamon of jamons.


I was craving this when I saw something similar at Whole Foods. I was disappointed. I will crave this, and I assume you will too.



I’m not huge on seafood so I won’t really crave this, but you will crave it. I know cause ya’ll were so into it that you guys insisted that I try some, even though seafood gives me a stomachache.



Mmm, I will crave this. This was the moment where I wished no one else was there so I could eat by myself.



But then this was the moment I was really grateful everyone was there so we could order everything off the dessert menu… ^_^;;



You will crave melted chocolate with churros, and shot glasses of different melted chocolates.



I have been craving this meal in Barcelona since the minute it ended, and not just because of the stuffed sweet peppers and “what-dreams-are-made-of” champagnebut because the combination of new friends and new food at the beginning of a new adventure is a dish like none other (zing).  Nope, sorry. I tried really hard to make this post about more than just food, but the reality is, I had a life changing experience on this trip, and it had a lot to do with cuisine.



I have an interesting relationship with food at home; its not that I’m picky about food, but I really don’t care to try new things at new restaurants because it’s mostly just expensive for the kind of taste I could guess at. Eating at a fancy schmancy restaurant and considering the “light hint” of anything or “subtle texture” of my food has never been my thing. I eat food that will nourish me, and that means I’m a meat and potatoes and bread and salad kinda girl. But hot damn.

I don’t know if I will carry this desire to try new foods back to the U.S, but this trip has definitely made me somewhat of a “foodie” (shudder). I feel like I will be that snob that goes to a “Spanish cuisine” restaurant and the person across from me will be all “I love tapas” and I’ll be all, “You’ve never had real tapas. I’ve been to Spain, I miss REAL Spanish food.” Sorry in advance.


You’re Going to Crave It…

It’s Not A Competition!!!

Calvin is kicking kicked my ass in the blogging department!!

But BOY do I have some great excuses for that!

  1. I brought the wrong charger to my netbook. Whoops.
  2. Calvin travels with all the force of a great Monsoon. Zzzz, so tired.
  3. I’m sick. Sleeping in trains, train stations, and cold places in general is not a healthy lifestyle choice. I advise everyone to not be homeless*. Brr.

But, to make up for it, I wrote a lot in my journal, so I will be uploading those later. For now, you can read Calvin’s hardcore, full speed, blistering mega travel entries, and then reminisce with me later at a leisurely pace as I recall and muse over our travels.

Then, we will have an epic blogging battle that culminates in a “winner take all square off” where the readers choose who will win the coveted ownership of Monsoon Diaries, while we all know its just to see who is more popular among readers*.

*I jest.


You’re Going to Crave It…

Holy Flying Buttress, Batman!


See that guy lurking in the corner? That’s my illness…following me to Sevilla.



I got sick Night 1 in Barcelona from sleeping with wet hair*, and then proceeded to beast my way through a freezing but unfortunately (or fortunately? can’t decide), not white, Christmas in Madrid**, then a 6am tour in Granada, a 9am reservation for Alhambra, and then a gorgeous nighttime (still the same day) tour of the Mezquita-Catedral in Cordoba.

My attention only goes so far, and between thinking about being sick and being awed by things I’ve only seen on Google images, the awesome won. But then I passed out in Sevilla and I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it (out of my bed).  I considered staying behind and trusting everyone to bring back pictures, but then again…



I studied the Seville Cathedral in art history and there was no way I was missing the flying buttresses. So I went.



Someone once gave me a piece of their mind advice when I was in my younger, more…whiny days; “the way you do one thing in life is the way you do everything.” 

I never want to set the tone for myself that skipping out is okay. Of course, you need to make judgement calls when it comes to your health, but in this case, I decided to man up and go, and it was worth it.



*Ladies. I know backpacking is all about bare bones packing, but what this really means is thinking about what is essential to you as a traveler, and being pragmatic about it. They are “your essentials,” and the “your” in that phrase is just as important as the “essentials” part. 

So what’s important to Calvin (hair wax? important, towel? not important) is different than what is important to me (hair wax? not important, towel? IMPORTANT). But one thing that most backpackers might roll their eyes at that I must ask you to reconsider is a blow dryer. If you’re like me and it takes your hair longer than 2 hours to dry naturally, it will be unpleasant if your itinerary involves cold weather and moving fast. This is less of a vanity and more of a health thing for me, since having your hair freeze into icicles is…not healthy. They make plenty of teeny tiny hair dryers, which I will be picking up soon.

**It was more of a bluish, purple Christmas.


- At time of posting in Sevilla / San Pablo, it was 15 °C - Humidity: 54% | Wind Speed: 2km/hr | Cloud Cover: n/a


You’re Going to Crave It…

Game Changers: Food In Barcelona

– The dinner last night was amazing and changed the way I feel about food. I’m not much of a foodie; I’ll eat pretty much anything in an effort to not be hungry. I dunno if it was the champagne (Spanish sparkling wine), the happiness of finding Ines after doing 6 rounds around the same square, or the general ambiance of the place, but I just couldn’t stop eating and drinking. Great times.

– I truly overestimated the bathroom situation at the hostel and forgot to bring shower sandals. But it’s really not that bad. You kinda forget that stuff when you’re in the middle of a whirlwind of activity:



It’s so nice to get a break from minimalist and modern design and see something that’s so organic and ornate. I felt like I was in a cocoon with the sunlight peeking through a thin shell. Needless to say, I loved the lighting.



More Gaudi later…



You’re Going to Crave It…

Small Sad, Tiny Tragedy, Little Losses

Ahh, the tragedy of hubris. I got my Frederic Fekkai shampoo and conditioner taken away from me at Newark…and now, like Superman to Kryptonite, my powers have been stripped. How will I gain access to extra treats on the plane, cutting in line, and other freebies without the all powerful scented hair flip?

Haha, in all seriousness though, its probably a good idea to check up on those carry on rules. The fact that I usually check my bags and therefore have no idea whats allowed in a carry on and what isn’t is a pretty good indication of my status as a first time backpacker. And as you can probably tell from the posts about denied credit cards, fancy shampoos, and no WiFi at first class lounges, we’re experiencing some heavy duty first world problems, and you should probably feel sorry for us.

Next stop Barcelona, and I’m going to meet the Lieutenant! I heard she’s a badass.



- At time of posting in Porto / Pedras Rubras, it was 9 °C - Humidity: 87% | Wind Speed: 4km/hr | Cloud Cover: broken clouds