Posted by: Team McSlade | June 5, 2010

Ryan’s in town (another one)

As we are winding up our time in Spain, we have been working out the last few days here; our hot lap of Europe when we shoot through and how we are going to get excess baggage home.

A mate from Uni in Australia, Ryan (what a surprise, another Ryan here) came through for a few days and with us having a car we could pick him up just outside Gandia. As a car is a luxury for us we hadn’t ventured out to Piles (said Pi-les) where he was, so with no map and a vague look on the internerd, I managed to find a goat track through orange groves to Piles. There are main roads to that town, I just didn’t use them.

Ryan Huckshold had been hanging out in Sevilla for a month working in a hostel for a bed and had had enough of big cities, so out to our pueblo was the ticket. A dip in the pool, a couple of bombs and a laze in the sun saw out the first day.
We also ascertained that Adelaide is officially the city of “2.5 degrees of separation” – not only do Ryan and I share the same first name, but we have the same birthday, March 27 (although, as I was celebrating becoming a teenager (age 13) with a lock-in session at Timezone in Elizabeth he was being born).
Combine that with both of us working at Fasta Pasta Gawler in our youth and then when Mr Huckshold asked if I knew Brett O’Neil who worked at FP when it opened, I said yes and he said Brett was his stepfather! What the…? Mucho loco…

We drove out to Alcoi the following day, with mixed results. Alcoi was fairly crap – a big city with potential and it appeared that stuff could occur there, yet it failed to materialise while we were there. The drive to Alcoi was unique, having to reverse down a hill to allow a truck passed, only to start the climb again and nearly getting nailed by a second truck. We had been informed that Turron, a nougat kind of treat was a speciality of Alcoi (that is also exported around the world from here) could be tried.
Alas, the tourist info lady told us that only at Christmas is this treat on offer.

Back from the uneventful day trip, Ryan2 went into town to organise excess baggage. Now, I met Ryan in my Spanish class thus our Spanish is at about the same level (and fairly poor), however we managed to ask about the freight via sea (flete del mar) and the guy answered in English. Awesome. We got the rates and a box to try out packing for home.
Prior to entering Mailboxes etc, we ventured to the health food shop. Wheatgrass in Australia is a common sight in the Australian health quarter but Spain doesn’t appear to be on the same plain. Armed with ¿Tienes hierbos del trigo?  (Do you have wheatgrass?) we were met with a puzzled look. A few more tries asking for a green plant you drink, you mix with water, you mix/blend it, also in Spanish; they dragged out the English speaking girl and failure ensued. As I continued to push through with this disaster, Ryan was flagging me to abort the mission and ultimately he got some multivitamins and a lemon tea drink.

A paella for dinner, and the next day we dropped him off in Alicante (we had a map, it made it easy and saved Ryan the best part of 5 hours on the bus) and we headed on to Grenada and Alhambra…

Matt and Kate have been in the French Riviera for the week as we have two Canadian women in the flat on the bottom floor (they booked it before Matt and Kate had their dates set). We have given the Canucks a wealth of local knowledge and are quite perplexed as to why you would choose the back blocks of Spain as an introduction to Europe.
Never the less, Matt has still managed to keep the troops entertained on the way from Milan to Monaco, below is Kate’s response to ‘…hope you’re having a good time’

….Matt thought he’d show a 2 and a 4 year old how funny it was to stick green play doh up his nose like snot on the train. Naite tried to do the same which was always going to happen and he snorted it back to tears and an allergic reaction of twenty sneezes lots of snot later and well ahh, we got our play doh back.
Funny memories now because we have arrived in Monaco and it is a DREAM. Words cannot describe…



  1. Even though your blog is very entertaining and I love todays reading on Mission: Wheatgrass, I can’t help but feel a little sad that we have reached the time of the semester where people are starting to venture on. You will all be missed greatly 😦

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