A Travellerspoint blog


By Abby

overcast 13 °C
View Koning/Zemliak Family Europe 2012/2013 on KZFamily's travel map.

This morning Hannah and I were awoken by bright lights and people banging around. But I guess things like that come with the benefit of having the bathroom attached to your bedroom. This interruption of a warm sleep started at around 8:30, and continued until we were ordered to get up an hour later. When I got out of bed I saw my parents were already dressed and they were packing their bags and putting on their shoes. I was promptly notified that they were heading to the grocery store, because it closed at noon and they were feeling kind and wanted to let us have dinner. When they came back Hannah and I were fed, watered and clothed and helped unpack groceries.

Bilbao Out to eat Pinxto

Bilbao Out to eat Pinxto

When we did leave the apartment, at around eleven o'clock, we were greeted by a sprinkle of rain as well as crowds of people. The rain was on and off for the next while as we searched the streets for a place to eat lunch. By 12:30 we found a small, empty cafe and decided that we might as well see what they offered. That morning my parents had heard about a popular food called a pintxo. My dad ordered one of these foreign snacks, which turned out to basically be a croquet-like substance and "ham" on a piece of bread, skewered with a toothpick. Hannah, my mom and I all got variations of the same thing, which here is called a tortilla. They were made of potatoes, onions and eggs, Hannah's topped with tuna, and my mom's topped with crab. I went simple with no topping. We ended up getting two more pintxos to share amongst us, as they are quite small. Everyone but me liked them, this is probably because I don't like croquettes or ham.

Bilbao Guggenheim

Bilbao Guggenheim

After this we continued our walk and went to look at the Guggenheim (goo-gen-hime) museum from the outside (you'll hear more of this in an upcoming entry). If you've ever been to the National Gallery in Ottawa, you would have noticed straight away that there was a familiar sculpture outside. We, being the intelligent and informed people we are, did notice this at once. The sculpture was of a large spider with spindly legs and a teeming egg sack. When we had seen it the first time in Ottawa, we wondered if we were to come back and see it again if there would be baby spiders crawling around its feet. We were, sadly, wrong. But after this severe disappointment we went on walking and stumbled upon a massive playground, made up mostly of roped jungle gyms. My parents, as you probably know, are children at heart and immediately ran and started to play. Hannah, being the mature teenager she is, promptly went and informed them of the age limit, which was fifteen. Eventually they got down, but Hannah and I saw no reason why we had to and stayed there for another 25 minutes while my parents went on a walk so that they would not have to hide their jealousy of our youth. Although you might be thinking that it was unfair that Hannah, being one year over the limit, was allowed to stay on the playground while my parents were forced off, we all agreed that she would be able to pass as a fifteen year old. Plus we were the only ones there. But play time must always come to an end, and when my parents came back they wrenched us from the ropes, leaving us with painful, dislocated shoulders.

Bilbao Funicular de Artxanda

Bilbao Funicular de Artxanda

After this we went home for a bathroom break and a snack, but soon left again for a funicular, a type of train. Our funicular led up a hill to a landing that had a spectacular view of the city. We stayed for about fifteen minutes, then ran to get the front car for the way back. But this ended today's adventures, as from there we walked home, stopping halfway to pick up some pastries (obviously) for dessert. For dinner we had fajitas/burritos/tacos...whatever you want to call them, really. They were actually quite tasty, I had three. The pastries, on the other hand, we a little disappointing. But I wasn't too sad, after all, I did eat more than my fair share of dinner. So I just ate off the chocolate topping of the cookie, and sucked out the cream from the croissant-like pastry. But, all things considered, it was a good day, and I'm excited for tomorrow, but I'm more excited for tonight...because I get to sleep.
Bilbao Dessert

Bilbao Dessert

Posted by KZFamily 11:07 Archived in Spain Tagged bilbao guggenheim pinxto pincho

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Thank you Abby for your latest report and pictures. You are now in a modern city. What strikes me most is, how modern art and buildings blend in so well with older buildings and art. What went through my mind was, that it is no wonder Spain is broke. At least they have something to show for.

The pictures of the variety of different foods are very tempting. I like the one of the butcher shop the most. (Just imagine buying a whole roasted pig, Muriel what about that?). It seems to me that you people are well fed. I would not mind to be your guest for a while. Oh well, I will stick to meat and potatoes and no pastries. Until next time. Opa.

by G.Koning

13:32 pst 26/11/12
Brilliant post Abby and though I do not know your Dad well, I can certainly identify to your Mum and her ways :) It would have been classic to see a picture of her on a Jungle Gym trying to maintain her poise as a sophisticated adult. If the Health Industry of BC only knew the truth. Mmmm. It must be tough for you all to have that role model to follow.
Teasing aside, Art forms in Spain are seen as you say in other countries of the world. You have provided a great description and pictures of the day, nice to read.
Also glad your parents elected to water and feed you both, that was funny.

by RobBar

Loving reading your entries! You're all such excellent writers, and yet I can hear each of your personalities in each one! Abby, this one was great, so you : ) Sure the travel and architecture is great but I'm really enjoying reading about the gastronomical delights!

by Sheila

Great post. Had me smiling the whole way through.
..and drooling.

by Irene

I'm with you, Abby, say no to croquettes and ham! Nothing tops those French pastries so far, hey? As previously, I enjoyed your sense of humour and the food details - off to get a snack myself!

by judy Aalders

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