Highlights and photos from my 6th week on Tenerife – June 18th – 24th, 2014)

One thing I used to do when I was bored “at the office” was browse Pinterest. My fellow coworker and I would send each other funny e-cards and various other pins to entertain each other throughout the day. Since I have been traveling I haven’t spent really any time on Pinterest but recently went on to find a travel quote. The one that stood out to me that I kept seeing over and over again was…

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In all honesty it’s not a quote that I particularly like but it does have a pretty significant message. The world is like a book… different characters, places, story lines, adventures etc… It’s up to you to choose which pages you want to read (or write!). As I create and continue this journey I am on, the more I realize how INDIVIDUAL travel is. This is MY journey… MY adventure. It’s nice to have input and advice – but at the same time it’s equally as important to trust your gut and make decisions based on what you want to do. I like the “just wing it” method… my plan is no plan. I don’t know what it is I’m going to want to do tomorrow – I’ll simply figure it out when I get there! Researching a destination doesn’t really excite me. What excites me is showing up in a new city, walking around, asking locals what they love, and simply wandering around. This method may not suit others… but it suits me just fine. If you are the planning type then plan… if you are the “wing it” type… just wing it!

I had a feeling that long term travel was going to change me… not in the sense of fundamentally WHO I am… but in the sense of opening my mind to a new “things”. I’m about 71 days into international travel and already am feeling the positive side effects of travel. It’s a humbling experience to be somewhere where EVERYTHING is pretty much new and different. A simple trip to the market is an adventure in and of itself.

My best advice I can give anyone who wants to travel long term is to do it in an authentic manner… whatever feels true to your true desires, your personality, and your dreams. There is no right or wrong way to travel. If you are happy and having a good time then that’s all that truly matters!

 

Read on for some highlights and photos from my 6th week on the island!

 

Day 62 – June 18(36) – Wed

Expenses – 0

Worked in the morning then went to Santa Cruz to meet Juan and relax on the beach for a bit (This NEVER gets old to me. Hand me a book, a snack, and a cold drink and I can stay there ALL day! I don’t understand how people get “bored” at the beach. I could chill out there alllllllllll day in the sun – it’s my happy place!). We walked over the to the auditorium (the big white building in the photo) and stumbled across some “rock art”. Apparently a man voluntarily took his time to paint the faces of famous musicians on the rocks!

Santa Cruz Auditorium

Santa Cruz Auditorium

Santa Cruz Auditorium

Santa Cruz Auditorium… with the pool park in the foreground 🙂

Santa Cruz Auditorium Rock Art

Rock Art! – Michael Jackson is the one on the lower right

 

Day 63 – June 19 (37) – Thurs

Expenses – 0

Worked in the morning then went hiking in Igueste with Juan. Climbed straight up the mountain! My legs were sore from the 17k hike I did two days ago but I made it (barely… on the way back Juan was literally pushing my up the mountain because my calves were going to explode!) Went to the abandoned house that used to serve as a way to guide the ships in. On the way back we had to speed it up to catch the bus and made it with just TWO minutes to spare!

A short walk away from the village... it is located in a secluded area of the mountain with amazing ocean views!

Cemetery – A short walk away from the village… it is located in a secluded area of the mountain with amazing ocean views!

Located an appx 45 minute hike up and slightly down the mountain

Located an appx 45 minute hike up and slightly down the mountain

Coastal hikes = happiness

Coastal hikes = happiness

Hiking

Juan & I – Locals make the best tour guides!

Views of Iguesta & Santa Cruz

Views of Iguesta & Santa Cruz

 

Day 64 – June 20 (38) –Fri

Expenses – 15 (food and drinks)

Worked in the morning . Got dropped off in La Laguna with Karen (my co-volunteer). Met Juan at Café 7 for a Spanish lesson (I’m working on it!). The town was bustling with activity because there was a music festival all around town with different stages and performances. We walked around and got some food and drinks then went to the town square for the last performance/band of the night. We all danced our butts off and had a blast!

Karen & I at the music festival

Karen & I at the music festival

Day 65 – June 21 (39) – Sat

Expenses – 30 Euro (admission for park, gas for car, dinner)

Spent the whole day adventuring with Juan, Andy (a Scottish guest), and the two Polish girls. We went to Monkey Park and spent two hours walking around! I love monkeys so I spent my good ol’ time walking around (it does make me sad to see them in cages though). We then went to snorkel where the sea turtles can be spotted  in Puertito de Adeje in the south of the island (didn’t see any – the ocean was kind of rough and since we were out in the open water it was quite the workout!). We then drove to the “blue hole” and went cliff jumping Puerto de Santiago. Took a sunset drive back through Teide and went to a guachinche to each dinner on the cliffside above Puerto de la Cruz. Unfortunately my phone died before sunset so I wasn’t able to capture the awesome colors and stars — there is always tomorrow though!

 

How beautiful are these guys?? So colorful!

How beautiful are these guys?? So colorful!

"I like twertles"

“I like twertles”

Taking "Letting it all hang out" to a whole new level.

Taking “Letting it all hang out” to a whole new level.

I've never seen a baby monkey that small! We stood watching it for at least 20 minutes!

I’ve never seen a baby monkey that small! We stood watching it for at least 20 minutes!

THIS GUY. I've heard of blue balls... but purple ones? Oh my... and his ass was rainbow colored too. The Drill monkey is one of Africa's most endangered species :-(

THIS GUY. I’ve heard of blue balls… but purple ones? Oh my… and his ass was rainbow colored too. The Drill monkey is one of Africa’s most endangered species 😦

Sassy monkey...

Sassy monkey…

Our snorkeling site

Our snorkeling site

Overlooking Los Gigantes

Overlooking Los Gigantes

The "blue hole"

The “blue hole”

After we jumped off the cliffs - so much fun!

After we jumped off the cliffs – so much fun!

The only person you are destined to become is the one you decide to be. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

The only person you are destined to become is the one you decide to be. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Day 66 – June 22 (40) – Sun

Expenses – 5 euro

Worked in the morning then went to La Barranquera to explore the beach a bit. Picked up sea glass (I’m determined to fill up this jar I have – I feel like I would be a good candidate for the show “Strange Addiction- Episode #42 – Sea Glass”). Of course I laid out on the beach reading and relaxing. Bruno (my local friend) came by later and a group of us (Andy & polish girls) went to the stand in La Barranquera for dinner, dessert, and drinks. I love moments like these when I am around a table with people from different countries… the conversations are priceless!

Can you see why I am addicted?? SO pretty!

Can you see why I am addicted?? SO pretty!

Day 67 – June 23 (41) – Mon

Expenses – 3 euro (wine)

Worked in the morning then relaxed a bit by the pool before heading to Puerto de la cruz to celebrate San Juan night. Went with Alejandro(a local friend), Silvanna (co-colunteer), and Adela (new co-volunteer from the Czech Republic) to meet the people from couchsurfing. It was a night of drinks, bonfires, fireworks… then a midnight dip in the ocean! I ended up falling asleep on the beach (I just can’t hang like I used to haha). Eventually Juan woke me up and I went back home with some of the hostel guests. Finally got back to the hostel at 3:30am!

** I will post these photos in a separate post as I want to explain the significance of San Juan night!

Day 68 – June 24 (42) – Tues

Expenses –  7 (snacks & drink)

I KIND OF slept in a bit and relaxed most of the day (even when I go to bed late my body still wants to wake up at 7:30… and I usually struggle to fall back asleep – is this what your 30’s is about??). I went to Taganana with Andy, Adela (new co-volunteer), Janna (German girl), and the two boys from Argentina. They took a surf class and Adela and I relaxed on the beach. Later in the evening a big group of us from the hostel went to the couchsurfing meetup in La Laguna. Trying to get a large group of people out the door is one of the most frustrating tasks for someone who likes to be efficient. Add in the mix the fact that I got my monthly gift from mother nature today and I was ready to rip some heads off as I have NO patience during that time of the month. I’m typically a go with the flow type of person but when hormones are involved it’s a whoooooooooole different story haha! I wish guys could get a period ONE time so they could experience the nutty feelings chicks have to go through every month (at least I don’t usually get emotional so I’m thankful for that. I just get hungry. LIKE 500lb fat man hungry. And then tired (food coma status). I ended up having to wait almost TWO hours for everyone to get ready… so my solution was drinking a glass of wine to chill the F out haha. We got to the meeting so late that only three people remained. We ended up wandering around town trying to find another bar. At this point I was tired… the dude that had drove us had disappeared…so I ended up leaving the group with Juan and headed back to his family’s house in Santa Cruz. It was around 1:30am and he said it was around a 30 minute walk. We walked…and walked… then finally I got impatient and decided to jog the rest of the way!! So there I was… in my jeans and boots jogging the empty streets of Spain in the wee hours of the morning. Juan offered his bike but its one of those road bikes and I just imagined myself smashing my face on the road so I stuck to running. All in all it was appx 10k!

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