Our plan was to fly from Barcelona to Munich, and then to San Francisco. We left our hotel early in the morning, with many tearful farewells to those who were staying behind to travel around Europe. The Barcelona airport was set up like the one in San Jose, one long building with terminals on the sides. One interesting difference is that they didn’t list which terminal your plane would be at until thirty minutes before you were supposed to board, so we just loafed around the middle of the terminal until the signs changed. I spent the first flight listening to music and sleeping.
The transfer between Barcelona and Munich was relatively easy, because even though we changed countries, we were still in the Eurozone. However, we had to pass both customs and stringent security before reaching our gate in the Munich airport. I had a few euros left, so I after taking my shoes and socks off (they had little nets for our feet, similar to the hair nets food service employees wear), I went to the duty-free store and bought a collection of kinder-eggs for my family and a Mars bar for myself. I hadn’t tried one yet, and even though you can get them in America, I had to get rid of those Euros, and I figured I might as well eat some candy. It tasted like a combination of a Three Musketeers and a Snickers bar.
In order to facilitate an easier transition to San Francisco time, I needed to stay awake for the entire flight. I read, listened to music, watched Saving Mr. Banks and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, and played a mind game called the Resistance. It involves two opposing forces who are both trying to figure out which of the other players belong to which side. It’s a bit unnecessary for me to explain all the rules of the game, but if you’re curious, see here. Suffice to say I was very happy to have won the last game in a thrilling come-from-behind victory.
About two hours before we landed we had to fill out customs forms declaring what we were bringing back. It was the first time I had to do this, so I was a little lost, but my friends helped me through it. When we finally landed in San Francisco, I had to clear customs one more time before I was finally allowed to pick up my luggage. I said good bye to many of the friends I had made over the trip, and loaded down with clothes, souvenirs, and memories, I went out to meet my family.
The Spain journal ends here. However, I will be creating a new post soon that will contain a more thorough reflection on my time there. I hope you got some modicum of enjoyment from following along!