3 Days, 2 Nights in Granada

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GETTING THERE

It was a quick bus ride from Seville to Granada.  I went with Alsa again since it was clean, comfortable, and affordable.  

WHERE TO LAY YOUR HEAD ON A PILLOW

I booked a private room in an Airbnb.   If you’re new to Airbnb, use this link to get $40 in travel credit when you sign up.  If you’re not new…trust me, I’m still looking for a discount code.

GETTING AROUND GRANADA

Safe to say my Fitbit was a great investment, which is my roundabout way of saying I walked everywhere in Granada.

WHERE TO EAT

Anywhere that offers tapas!! Granada is tapas central! It was a quick trip, so I wasn’t able to try as many restaurants as I would have liked.  Of the restaurants I visited, La Sitarilla was my favorite.  Order a few sangrias and/or (and) tinto veranos and the tapas will flow.  Plus, the staff is super friendly.

THINGS TO DO

Can you guess what I did in Granada? A free walking tour, you guessed it!  Walk in Granada offers three free tours.  I did the Sacromonte tour because by the time I arrived that first afternoon, it was the only one still being offered that day.  The views were great, but that hike was disrespectful!  If you partake in this tour, make sure you wear sneakers with good grip.

Another highlight from my quick trip to Granada was meeting up with some people I met at the hostel in Seville.  We did a tapas crawl then caught a flamenco show…in a cave.  La Cueva de La Rocío was a cool setting for the show.  Fun fact, apparently Michelle Obama attended this show when she visited Granada.  I didn’t confirm that until I started writing this post; sitting in a chair with her name on it didn’t tip me off.  I digress, near the end of the performance, I was one of the people pulled up to dance with the performers.  Definitely an entertaining night to say the least.  

I was working with the afternoon that I arrived from Seville, one full day in Granada, then I left the following morning.  Unfortunately, I did not make it to The Alhambra…blasphemy, I know! Sounds like a great excuse to visit Spain again.

BUDGET

Here’s a breakdown of my budget for my time in Granada.  

Item Cost
Seville → Granada 25 € =  30 USD
Accommodations 40 € = 48 USD
Getting Around Walking is Free 🙂 #FinancialWin
Food and Drinks 40 € = 48 USD
Activities 25 € = 30 USD
Total 130 € =  156 USD

*I used an exchange rate of 1 € = 1.2 USD

Next stop, Madrid.  Ciao for now,

Marissa

 

Travel Burnout: Why I Take a Vacation During My Vacation

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We Love F****** Tourists does it again with this cozy area.

One thing people rarely tell you about traveling, it wears you out.  If the health app on my phone is correct, I’ve been walking 10+ miles a day.  Then, I’m up past my normal bedtime, socializing with people that I’ve met.  I can’t shake my early-bird habits, so I’m up by 7:00 each and every morning.  I’ve been going, going, going.

This piece seems random, but I was inspired to write this after reading a comment that a fellow blogger left on a previous post…thanks for that 🙂  She said that although I was in Seville for four days, I didn’t tell my readers too much.  I’m new to the blogging world, so for a second, I was in my feelings.  I thought to myself, she’s right…I could’ve done more, I could’ve done a better job.  I didn’t give away much in that post because I didn’t do much. Then I thought, wait, I’m not going to feel bad about that.  I’m not one of those people who does it for the ‘gram, or in this case, for the blog.

To get from Lisbon to Seville, I took an overnight bus.  I didn’t sleep much on the bus due to adulting; I had to deal with some things at home while navigating being six hours ahead of the east coast.  So when I arrived in Seville, that first day was a wrap.

Even if I had slept on the bus ride, taking various modes of transportation just days apart can be taxing on your body.  Sometimes, you just need a break from anything that requires physical or mental activity.  In real life, I’m a person who likes to treat myself to those moments.  When given the choice, I will Netflix and chill instead of leaving the house at least 6 times out of 10.   So to be constantly traveling, constantly exploring, constantly engaging…it can be draining.

All that to say, traveling can result in being tired but people don’t tell you that.  On the contrary, people often say, “You slept on your vacation?” “You didn’t see (insert x, y, and z)?” Yes, I slept.  No, I didn’t make it to that attraction.  And guess what, I’m not gonna feel guilty about it.  I had a great experience, and I did it on my time.

So in case you never hear this again let me say…it’s okay to take that nap.  It’s okay not to see everything.  It’s okay to find a spot where you can chill and read, or binge watch a show.  You don’t have to be Dora the Explorer 24/7.  

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The Secret Garden at Ostello Bello Lake Como was the perfect spot for some downtime.

What type of traveler are you? Always on the go, or do you indulge in some down time? Let me know in the comments.  Also, to help you sleep better, I’m giving away a sleep mask.  See the details below to enter.

Happy Travels,

Marissa

Feeling Lucky?

Enter for your chance to win a sleep mask.

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Separate and Unequal (Black-ish Spoiler Alert)

I’m new to the “Black-ish” bandwagon.  So far, I appreciate how the show utilizes humor to discuss real issues.  Like the episode that tackles Columbus Day, which in my opinion, could be used in a cultural competency course.  Most recently, the episode titled, “Public Fool,” which addresses private versus public schools and the dilemma that many families face.

Before I proceed, let me say, “spoiler alert.”  In this episode, Junior gets expelled from his private school.  After failed attempts at gaining access to another private school, Pops says, “You should send Junior to the local public school.  What’s the point of spending all this money to live in this damn neighborhood if you’re gonna turn your nose up at the school that’s right down the street?”  The fictional Johnsons are a wealthy family, led by a mother who is an anesthesiologist, and a father who is an advertising executive.  They can afford to live in an area with quality public schools.

Sadly, this predicament is not a fictional one.  It reminds me of a conversation I had with a parent who said it cost a pretty penny to send her child to a local school.  I agreed, then did a double take because I remembered her child attended a public school.  The parent then replied, “I was talking about the mortgage to live near a quality public school.”

Even 63 years after Brown v. Board, all public schools are not created equally.  As Dre put it, “Black folks got hit with the okey doke,” which Urban Dictionary defines as a scam, an untruth, fraud.   In some areas, public schools look more like private schools.  In other areas…well, let’s just say public schools look nothing like private schools or public schools in more affluent neighborhoods.  The okey doke, indeed.

As an educator who spent my teaching career in Title I schools, this is a topic that is near to me.  Most recently, I taught at a 40-40 school in the nation’s capital, which means that according to district accountability measures, we were one of the forty lowest-performing schools in the DC Public School system.  My favorite section of my classroom was a little corner with a poster that reads, “No matter who you are…or where you’re from…your future is up to you.” I coupled the sign with a Stanford banner, to remind my students that one’s zip code does not determine his or her future.  I’d like to believe this sentiment is true, but it can be hard when there are so many obstacles.  Nonetheless, I continue to believe that it is important to encourage young people to believe and dream beyond their circumstances …beyond their present comprehension.

During a recent visit to my former students as I prepare to move to California, one student that I taught two years ago asked to come with me so she can go to Stanford.  Of course I know how much positive impact our school has on our students and their families, but at times it just didn’t feel like enough.

As I watch this episode of “Black-ish” and type this, I feel guilty that I’m taking a break from the classroom because I feel like my students need me.  Unfortunately, the state of education that results from being separate and unequal is the reason why I felt the need to take a break.  Lack of resources, lack of support, growing demands, lack of time, the emphasis on mastery without celebrating growth.  The list goes on…and on, and on.  These circumstances impact our work as teachers, which then affect our students.

In the end, Junior is a fan of the public school.  For the first time in his educational career, he’s not one of the only Black students, he has Black teachers, and a vending machine with soda (insert side eye).  While this episode was intended to make light of a situation, it sheds light on the state of education.  I believe public schools have potential that has yet to be realized.  Maybe it can be attributed to institutional racism, or maybe it’s merely a matter of not knowing where to start.  Either way, something needs to be done.   

All this to say that we are still separate, still not equal.  But at this point, would equality be enough? That’s gonna be a hard no for me.  We need equity.  

~ Marissa