The Malvarosa Beach in Valencia is a true gem even for the likes of those who simply hate beaches such as myself. The scorching sun and the persistent sand mixed with salty sea water and my snow white chest had never been attractive for me. But wait, check the photo I took at the top of the page…who can resist such a view and the friendly breeze (not pictured) constantly licking your skin like a lover’s hug (or a lover’s dog). The sand is soft and the beach is wide, making sure it can accommodate as many souls as it can on its barren laps so there’s always a spot on the beach however crowded it is.
Different kinds of music mix with on and off cheering as one encounters dancers, yoga doers and a whole lot of other crazy people (in a nice way) having fun in all imaginable and unimaginable ways. The festival season seems to have arrived but it had never left in the first place.
The latecomer night takes over but the beach people seem unaware. The bathing suits are replaced with elegant but comfy clothes and people gather around picnic tables like roundtable knights in the light of the night. Beers are drawn from sacks, fruit is placed on the tables and friends gather. They chat, eat, drink and laugh maximizing the fun. I feel lucky to be included in such a circle as I feel I belong although I don’t speak a word of Spanish. Thank you friends, thank you Carol! for having me.
I still have 4 more days to physically start my adventure in Valencia, but I am constantly reminded how the weather is going to be there. For the past week, Ankara has been trying to match Valencia in terms of heat. And today, for the first time, my hometown has surpassed my destination in terms of humidity. Valencia is a coastal city…Ankara is landlocked with a couple of crappy, tiny, nearly dried-out lakes. How is it possible that Ankara is more humid? It’s pretty clear that I am being tested…I hate being tested…
My dislike for extreme heat dates back to my infancy when I used to stare at the contents of the open fridge with only my underwear on. As I had never been a person of lightning decisions, I became immune to extreme cold but vulnerable to mild heat right on the spot. I managed to survive until now…
So, in the light (or heat) of my newest discovery, my preparation process for my Valencia trip took a huge detour. Here are the changes:
I am no longer going to pack any clothes!
I’ll be looking for shades, where the sun isn’t felt much in the city instead of chic cafes.
I’ll be writing about my experiences late at night as intense heat cripples my creativity as you can see.
One last thing:
I’d be grateful if anyone who knows the city suggests how to overcome the issue of heat in Valencia. I’m wide open to suggestions!
It might seem odd to start a travel journal back in your hometown, but doesn’t the actual journey start in your mind before you physically move your body to the destination? The excitement you feel, the preparation/planning process, the extensive reading about the secrets of the city and dreaming – that’s when the real journey begins…
In 8 days, I will be travelling to the land of paella and oranges – Valencia, Spain with a colleague to do an intensive CELTA course for a month. Going there a week prior to the course will allow me to discover the city and learn to live like a local – the best part. I’ll post my experience and findings here but before that….let me tell you something.
I’m a nomad… I’ve always been one. My mother used to tell me stories about me, in my infancy, about the times I hadn’t existed (While I was still in her belly). She used to say that I had kicked a lot as if I had been trying to move, change my place in the tiny belly-pod. Travelling; the desire to change places was in my blood. And once again, my blood began to boil…can’t wait!