Almost three weeks in San Sebastian, Spain and I’m in love. She’s a city that instantly welcomes. The wide tiled sidewalks, and the tree-lined streets shading me from the heat of the sun, inspire me to keep exploring. It’s definitely a place to spend some time.
Every few blocks, there’s green space, often with a playground. Smiling people rest on the benches absorbed in conversations. Sometimes, I take a seat just to take in the positive vibes. It’s a happy culture.
Small markets dot the street every few blocks. Fruits and vegetables on display outside the stores draw me in to search the shelves filled with jars of beans, bottles of wine, cheeses and fresh breads for something new to try. I haven’t found a favorite and I’m not sure I will. They all feel special.
And the hiking… In 20 minutes, we walk through a mountainside neighborhood and are on the trails that wind through the forest, often with views of the crashing waves of the Atlantic coast. Bob says it reminds him of Big Sur in California. Part of the hiking is on El Camino de Santiago. I can now say, I’ve been on the pilgrimage, but not really, just 20 minutes of it. People hiking El Camino for “real” attach a shell on their backpacks that identifies them. I have great respect for their challenge. I could hike these trails for the rest of our stay here. Nature is within minutes of our apartment.
San Sebastian is known for the pintxos bars. Every day the bars offer a display of tasty bite-size savory treats. I’m getting quite good at ordering pintxos. I study, guess, and sometimes know what I’m ordering. Perhaps a tuna salad or an anchovy and goat cheese drizzled with reduced balsamic vinegar on top of crusty bread. So far, I’ve enjoyed each and every one. The barkeeps have been patient and kind as I learn to navigate the pintxos scene.
And the ocean… the beaches… A 10-minute walk and I’m at the beach. It’s a great surfer scene. When walking around town, a surfer can step out of an apartment building, wetsuit peeled to the waist, barefooted, carrying a surfboard on the way to the beach. The surf’s up and they’re on their way to catch it. For me, a towel in the sand, a dip in the ocean, and a good book are all I need. I’m trying to take full advantage of the ocean before the temperature drops.
As I said, I’m in love with this city. In the coming weeks, I will learn more of her secrets and can’t wait to share.
PS – I have received a few comments that there were no pictures of me in the last blog. Seriously, I had no pictures of me. I’m always behind the camera. Bob and I took note and are taking more pictures of me. This blog has a few more than normal to make up for the last blog.