Welcome to the famous beach destination north of Spain: San Sebastián!
I spent the day with my Colombian classmate Calex and her visiting cousin Juli.
I was psyched to see what San Sebastián has to offer and why people were always raving about it. I took in its sight of fine sand, people out and about by the shoreline, people playing having a good time; it has every vibe of a great beach destination. Not breathtaking (at least for me maybe because of the virginal beaches I’ve seen in the Philippines) but pretty indeed. When the Singapore girls come here in two months’ time, they’ll surely love it.
The weather wasn’t so nice though. There were occasional drizzles throughout the day, the sun was always going in and out of the clouds and sky was almost always overcast.
Some artists sketching away. I was thinking they might be gypsies.
But before heading down to the beach we strolled by the town center in search of a souvenir Calex wanted to buy. She was recounting that in her first week in Spain she went to San Sebastián with one of our classmates and now she is finishing her masters, she has visited it a second time. Soon she will be leaving for Barcelona where she will be doing her internship.
She and Juli eventually found their souvenirs. It was 4pm and we were hungry. Time to hit the bars for something to gobble.
The pintxos are heaven! I devoured four con mucho gusto! I don’t know if I was just really hungry I was able to appreciate the pintxos more but I think the pintxos here are better than Pamplona’s.
Stomachs filled, we marched towards the beach front to just sit and relax and let the time pass.
Calex and I decided to wet our feet with the waves hugging the shoreline. Brrr.. ¡Qué frío! Those in the water must have skin made of stone to be able to dip in. It was 16 degrees and windy too.
Juli took this photo as I was wiping the sand off my butt. Me totally unawares.
The Beach Scene.
Allotting enough time before our bus for Pamplona departs, we dropped by this bikini shop we passed by earlier on the way to the beach. The shop is called Goiuri (t’s in Basque language with most words containing 3 – 4 vowels all strung together). The bikini designs were quite unique that Calex and I wanted to try some on. The owner was very good in establishing customer rapport. He asked me where I was from and when I said I’m from Filipinas, he showcased me what he knows about my country. He knows the language is Tagalog (the Spanish pronounce this as Tagalo because they have trouble pronouncing the g at the end of a word), knows about José Rizal and even told me of the impresionante crocodile that was in the news a year ago. I was also impressed of his know-how which is actually a good way of making small talk especially since a lot of tourists in the area are foreigners.
As I was paying the bikini I asked if they are made here in Spain. He replied: from here.
In my mind I was thinking “yes here in Spain” and then it hit me! I am in Basque Country and they don’t consider themselves part of Spain. I quickly said my lo siento (sorry) and told him that yes there’s a difference.
This is one conversation that stuck to me and have been telling everyone this. I had my taste of Basque patriotism! How cool is that?