YEAR ABROAD : Things I'm going to miss

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As my year abroad comes to an end (although not quite because I still have loads to do and you can do so much in six weeks right and you can't make me leave anyway lalala) I'm trying to be positive and look forward to returning to the UK and everything that comes with that. And to be honest I am, there are so many things I'm excited to return to. However, I do know I'm going to miss it here terribly, it's become home and I know it will always feel that way. So today I thought I'd share just a few things I'm going to miss, not everything we'll be here until I leave.

ZARA

I thought I should get this one out of the way first as we all know it's been my great love in Spain and it's just not quite the same in the UK. I can roll out of bed and be in Zara in two minutes, even my flat's wifi stretches to Zara, I celebrate in Zara, I consolidate in Zara, there is nothing Zara hasn't seen or helped me with. So there you go I'm in love with a shop and that is going to be one tough break up.

COFFEE
When I first arrived I was baffled by this whole one size coffee thing, like hun where's my grande latte? Do you actually call that a take out cup? I've seen puddles bigger than this! Turns out they've got the size thing pretty damn right and wherever you go and ask for your 'cafe con leche' you know it's going to be good.

PINTXOS
As much as I have complained that everything comes on bread and sometimes I just fancy some Spanish tapas (because naturally I am now Basque) I'm really going to miss these funny concoctions of tapas on bread things. 

NB. I just stopped typing to ponder this and am now having a bit of a breakdown thinking about the fact that British bars and cafes don't constantly serve tortilla, what did I do without tortilla as a constant in my life? Omg tortilla is a constant in my life.

THE VIEWS
Oh wow so I live in some beautiful places in England but the Basque Country is nothing I have ever seen before. As you fly into Bilbao you pass the coast and are immediately surrounded by mountains before you land in the city, where else do you have all of that on your doorstep? Honestly, it's incredible.

WINE
Like coffee you know it's going to be good. When I go into a bar I seldom ask for a particular wine, I ask for red or I ask for white and I wait to be dazzled, or drunk.

GRAN VIA DE DON DIEGO LOPEZ DE HARO
WALKING ALONG THE GRAN VIA WITH A ZARA BAG IN ONE HAND AND A BASIC STARBUCKS SOYA LATTE IN THE OTHER AND FEELING LIKE A QUEEN YAAS

BERTIZ
So let's move on to a couple of specifics. Bertiz is a coffee shop chain in the area, I frequent at least three and one knows my order. It was quite a home comfort when I first arrived. Kind of a Basque Nero or Costa (but they always have tortilla *cries*), they serve more than just a cafe, they'll do you a hazelnut latte, a cinnamon cappuccino, on the occasion they even have soya milk, and they always have whipped cream. This has been the place for many catch ups and work breaks and I do think it will feel strange not sitting there every Friday for a couple of hours with a book.

PLAZA NUEVA
A stones throw away from my flat Plaza Nueva was the first square I ever ate pintxos. After an emotional rollercoaster of a day when I was visiting Bilbao with my mum we went pintxo bar hopping and I suddenly felt very at home. It has been much loved ever since.

ACCORDION MAN
That bloody accordion man that plays right by the metro and disturbs me at every hour of the day...yeah I'll secretly miss him.

BASQUE
I'm going to have to start greeting people in English again what's that about?

RESTAURANTS
Too many to mention really but any menu del dia can't really be beaten when I am three course full and have had some wine. But Amarena, Foodoo and Txoko are definitely up there when it comes to places I'm going to miss eating at.

RUNNING ALONG THE RIVER
When I was first here getting emotional on my mum (as mentioned prior) she told me I would love it when I was here and after my first run along the river by the Guggenheim I would be absolutely fine. Well you should trust your mums. I don't run often since joining the gym but I still go for the occasional evening jog by the Guggenheim when the city is bustling and the calming sunlight bounces off the river, I look up at the mountains, and I am home.

H XX





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