Gibraltar

Gibraltar

 Behold, the famous straights™️ of Gibraltar....


LOL, Ok.....The actual Strait of Gibraltar...



Gibraltar is a very unique city in terms of is geographical location. It’s a British territory nestled on the tip of Spain, directly across from Morocco; in convergence of the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean.  Of course, it is a very well known port for boats coming through the international waters. I was fuckin pumped to get my Gibraltar on.  



Gibraltar has significant history rooted in war too! Monuments and tunnels carved out through its hilltops, along with an absolutely massive fortifying wall running through the city are tell tale signs of its war significance.  I was infatuated with the construction efforts of the war infrastructure, which now make for excellent tourist attractions.  The easiest way to immerse yourself is to take a cable car up the Rock of Gibraltar and work your way down through tunnels, caves, and roadways until you're back in the city.

Don't be fooled by the rock that she got. 


              


Heights are my biggest fear.... second to spiders. None the less, that tiny cable car/gondola thing is the best way up the mountainside to the top. The view is spectacular and awards you the best view of the coastline. Once at the top, you'll have the opportunity to experience Gibraltar’s other main attraction, the macaques! The little f*ckers are adorable and will steal whatever they’d like from you. You’re tricked by their innocent little faces to believe they are sweet loving animals, when really they are scoping you out as a target and planning ways to play yo ass for what they want #sames.  Seriously, they’re smart as hell. You're warned to turn your backpacks and purse to your front, otherwise they'll jump on your back and steal from your bag....that was AWESOME to see.  You can spend all day sitting back and watching unsuspecting tourists have their food and items nabbed. 

Felt cute, might delete.
      


Suck Macaque you tourist bitch

At the top of upper Gibraltar lies more tourist gems. There are the caves of St Michael and The Great Siege tunnels, both of which allow you to play Batman pretty well! I haven’t been spelunking in a little while, and quite pleased with how easily accessed the caves are.  The siege tunnels are wartime realness, featuring cannons and memorials all around. They’re pretty neat to run through, provided you’re mindful of other tourists and ignored the obvious dangers LOL  hours were spent wandering around the mountain  listenin to Billie Eilish..bein a bad guy...duh. 

Braggiin a bit.

 


I'm kawaii in the tunnels


























In my humble opinon St. Michael's Cave is legit the coolest way to use a cave in modern times. When not being toured by basic people like me, they hold orchestral and military band concerts here. The acoustics are fantastic, and the "venue" can hold up to 600 people. Its a logistical nightmare getting people up the mountain to the caves, but was told it is well worth it. About 4 times a year, you can enjoy a concert here, something I look forward to coming back and experiencing first hand....I love a good orchestra.  The cave itself is massive, lots of winding passage ways, and even an underground lake, which will eventually be open for tours once they get it all sorted out. 



totes kewl



Alfred, bring around Robbin...

Downtown Gibraltar is neat. An interesting mix of buildings, none of which were particularly beautiful or noteworthy. My favorite part was finding that education here is completely funded all the way through college, must be nice!  Every kind of religion is represented and they all live in perfect harmony of each other in this super compact space. Definitely dig the Gibraltar vibe.

Mooirsh or less a 3/10 as far as castles go
There is a Moorish castle to be seen in the hilltops as well! I recommend seeing this one on the trip down the mountain, as its easier to start at the top of the Rock of Gibralter and work your way down, vs climb up, and up, and up, and up, and up. After a long day of facing heights, tunnels, caves and macaques, I was happy to be boarding the ship for some gym time and a big meal. Until next time Gibraltar. 

Cadiz

Cadiz

Cadeeze nuts, jk it’s  pronounced “Ca-deith”. 



Trip to Cadiz was full day stop number one on the Windstar cruise, and it was the first major departure for me from pursuing a ratchet or relaxing time. This portion was more educational, and damn I learnted some things and stuff. 



Cadiz is one of the oldest cities in Spain, it has been attacked by foreign countries more times than Britney in the tabloids, and is full of influences in culture as far reaching as South America. Much of its history is preserved in the architecture, and this city is an example of how humanity can cram buildings into a tiny area to the point that it impacts population growth; literally there is no room left to have people come in. Makes for a cool place to walk about though đŸ€·. Everywhere you look there is history to be seen, all of which is aggressively preserved by the city. I was really impressed by the system they have in place for tourists, as the streets have colored lines for you to follow paths that will take you around whatever flavor of tour you’d like. Want to see medieval paths? Follow green. Spanish architecture? take blue.  Seaside promenade more your speed? Wander the yellow path. Wanna watch a losing football team? Go Browns LOL.

Something about him says "Hail Satan!"
Is he holding a vape?

                  


Against my norms, I took a tour through a church.....Cathedral de Cadiz, a stunning church that took over a hundred years to build and was easily one of the most beautiful centerpieces to the city. However,  it was not well received to play BeyoncĂ© in the crypt! Sure, its holding their centuries old dead peeps, but like, you’re welcome for bringing you life ,dead people. (spinning  around to 7/11 was necessary for my own religious experience). 








My tour guide took me around the area to point out all the cool buildings and facts, most of which went in one ear and out the other but were v informative. She was awesome, I am just not comprehending 



Dropped some Yonce on ya old ass






When the tour was done I brunched at El Fargo resturante, my guide told me about it and really it was some boughey ass place to eat by the sea.  Down the street is the Castillo de Santa Catalina which of course I loved, because this bitch loves castles. 



CASTILLOOOOOOOOOOO


 I poked around the city for a few more hours, finding all of my favorite doors (that’s still a thing...). Then I stumbled across Puente De La Constitucion De 1812 (or La Pepa Bridge), a gorgeous modern piece of engineering that stands in stark contrast to the otherwise quaint aesthetics of the city. This bridge is fuckin awesome....at night it gets rainbow lit.... like me.   

Our love ain't water under the briddddddge
I chilled out looking at plants in Jose Celestino Mutiss Park. blasting my obnoxious Russian rap music to ensure I was not mistaken for an American twat. It didn’t appear that there was much of a gay scene to explore, and after walking 11 miles, I was ready to hit the gym and get back on the boat for some relaxing time. All the while, I snapped photos left and right. Seriousness there was no end to the pretty buildings.



The boat left a good two hours after I got on the ship, and I can’t help but desire more time in Cadiz. I love a city that can be walked so easily, since it takes maybe 15 min to cross from one side of the peninsula to the other. Every alleyway has its own charm and history  I loved walking around them all until i couldn't walk anymore.


cutie

My favorite door.....
  





Oh yeah.  The boat for the cruise is this WindStar WindSurf:





Lisbon

Portugal The Cis-Male 


Mad jet lag is the determining factor that led to my short four day stay in Lisbon. I was due to set sail for a 15 day Mediterranean cruise, and did not want to sleep for the first week. I can literally make a one timezone shift and have my body react as though I was on my first day withdrawing from 14 years of heroine abuse, so to think about what crossing 7 would do was enough to push for an adjustment period. 




That said, Lisbon is the perfect city for the time I needed, and it’s just fuckin awesome. First of all, it is rated one of the safest cities in the entire world, and second, it’s got New York City levels of 24 hour things to do; without the smelly, overcrowded, dirty, congested vibes that comes with it (having been in NYC the weekend prior, I was still full of haterade). The city of Lisbon is stunning, typical European charm in the architecture and is filled with people embodying the epitome of friendliness and fun loving. I become an extremely grumpy cunt when met with exhaustion (jet lag) and not once did I feel the need to take that out on anyone, it was completely smooth sailing.
                                        


Marqués de Pomba
Hotel for this leg of my journey was H10 - a chain I was recommended by my contact in Barcelona.  The hotel is set in a prime location near MarquĂ©s de Pomba in an 18th century building that was remodeled and presented in a way that is pure Lisbon. Beautiful, tasteful tile work abound, cutie rooms, and a fantastic overlook of the city - I would stay at this place every single time. Staff was very well spoken and worked hard to ensure each guest felt right at home (much needed since I planned to fall into a sleep like death here...sans the spinning wheel).

My arrival at 8:30am after 16 hours of traveling meant the first place I went was the bed. A 45 min nap and I was up to see the city to stay awake as long as I possibly could.  My location was prime and centric to main tourist attractions, I made the most of the extreme walkability of the city - I wouldn’t need a cab to get about, just some ambition and comfy shoes.  Stop number one was a 2 mile walk for brunch in Praça do ComĂ©rcio, an open area where the city meets the waterfront surrounded by stately buildings and prime shopping. Cantina restaurant served up my first dose of Portuguese food, and I will likely crave tastes like this for the remainder of my life. Seriously, the food is next level delicious and I’m drooling just writing about it. I must have been at lunch for 3/4 hours because the afternoon was quickly approaching evening and my eyes began to sink like the titanic...one of the lids half down while the other shuddered up and down yo-yo style. No matter, the walk home was a beautiful mix of parks and pretty buildings.  I landed in bed by 3:30 and woke up sometime around 7am the next morning. 


Gotta appreciate a nice sidewalk
  


Have you ever slept so hard that you wake up having lost the memory of the days before? If not, allow me to elaborate on how it feels to wake up in a bed in a foreign country with nearly no recollection of getting there. Let’s set the scene:
*gentle oboe playing from my phone alarm*
*sunlight playfully peeking through the curtains*
*crisp cool air conditioning flowing over my face*
*absolute serenity*
Me (waking up screaming): PORTUGAL!!!!! 
[I literally woke up yelling that word as though I was on a flight to Paris and suddenly remembered it was the name of my child left home alone]. 

**end scene**


Dazed, confused, half aware of my surrounds - I was finally back to normal. 



Out the door I go for breakfast and off to see Castelo de S. Jorge- an 11th century Moorish castle atop the hills. If you follow my blog enough, you know I enjoy setting my adventures around recreating my favorite obscure lyrics (one night in Bangkok to see if I’d be humbled,  getting in on a 12:30 flight to Africa,  saying hello to my ex from the other side after calling a thousand times). Well, this is no different and I Halsey’d myself straight to the castle - they didn’t make me their queen. I tried. 



The castle was freakin awesome, as most castles are. I have a specific image in my head of what a castle should look like, and this was it. Only 10€ and you’re able to live your best life running all over up and down the stairs in and out of all the little towers and courtyards. I adored every second, and thanks to a flock(?) of peacocks that live within the walls, I knocked out a Katy Perry favorite of mine....it got me wondering...a bunch of crows is a murder, you can have a siege of cranes, a group of hawks is a cast, hell even a lot of magpies is called a tiding....but nothing for peacocks.... I have decided to deem a group of peacocks a bukakke. So. Much. Bukakke. Here. 

I am your queen now. 
       

I wanna see it. 
Moving forward, I spent the day enjoying hilltop views and living my best 11th century life, by which point jet lag set in. Time to walk 2.5 miles back to my hotel for some much needed sleep. Arrived at 5:00 PM, falls asleep, wide awake at 9:30 PM. Eats. Dead ass tired at 11:30 PM. Sleeps. Wakes up at 7:00AM. No screaming LOL    

My third day was the hardest with jet lag. I had breakfast and a workout, fell asleep for 5 hours. Had lunch. Fell asleep four hours.  Dinner. Sleep. Shower. Sleep. Omg it’s now 9:30 AM the next day. Today is my last chance for a night out in Lisbon and my desire to check out the gay bars has grown immensely.  Bars in Europe have some pretty insane closing times when compared to America, the last time I was able to party until 7 am was in the underground clubs of Paris a whole 3 years ago. I was overdue.  

<3 

I polled 30 gay men on grinder and 15 on scruff to determine which bars would be the most poppin for a late Monday night adventure. My votes came down to starting at Friends Bairro Alto and ending at Finalmente - a tiny drag bar.  Needless to say I was no disappointed in the least!!!!!  I met some great lesbians and an amazing gentleman from Brazil, who would end up being my companion for the night. It took me many many many drinks to get to the level of inebriation I am accustomed to in the US, due to the difference in what “two shots of vodka” mean. I digress, I had some kick ass people to chill with and this night was gonna be awesome. 
We hung out from around midnight to 2:00 AM at Friends Bairro Alto and began making our way to the drag bar Finalmente. The trek to the bar was as entertaining as the bar itself. In Lisbon, you can walk around with alcohol, so ordering a drink at 2 and carrying it out was both unusual and fascinating. Brazilian man (Rodrigo) and I met this crazy amazing Portuguese girl and her friend, we all took our booze, and off we went. In the streets she was yelling in Portuguese all kinds of things at her best friend that I couldn’t understand, I would later find out she was calling him “piece of shit drug addict” which sounded more elegant before I knew what she said. (i love her).



 Her friend jumped on a strangers back, who then carried him to the bar as we three laughed and boozed our way behind them.  Finalmente is a drag bar, which of course is my favorite -  this night ended up with the same result as when I did Latin drag night at Toucans in the US - I couldn’t understand any words but had a great time dancing. 5 am came around and my hunger had set in...out the bar I go.  

*googles nearest open McDonald’s* - 2.5 miles. 


As I begin my walk to fast-food nirvana, the clouds open up and it begins to rain like a motherfucker.  Walking turns into a run, run turns into a sprint, and after 300 solid feet of that, I am on instagram sending wet videos of me to Hawaii and my sister as I entertain myself about the situation. 


I realize I am passing by my hotel, with another mile and a half to go, and that feeling of is it worth it sinks in...fuck yeah it is ya drunk bitch go get your food.  45 mins later, success in the bush.  I’m full, I’m at my hotel, in bed and I have 5 hours of sleep before my car is set to arrive to take me to the cruise ship!  Lisbon, it was realness. 

They

Love


Statues