A Salamanca Friday Night

It's Friday! The best day of the week for most people. In Spain, classes start later than in America (9:30am), so you would think it would be easy to spring out of bed every morning with an extra hour of sleep, but that is not the case. Beds are comfy and waking up will always be difficult, no matter what country you live in. To make waking up a little easier, breakfast is a must. It seems that everyone in Salamanca survives on fruit, bread, coffee, and more bread. So what do you do when in Spain? Live as the Spainards do, of course!

In our communication class this week at Mester, students have been giving mini-presentations on a topic of their choosing in order to spur conversation in Spanish. In our grammar course, we are learning really convoluted things like subjunctive (which is a "mood" not a "verb tense" in case you were wondering) and probability. I won't even try to explain what exactly these are here because that would require its own blog post. Complicated stuff!

After classes, we all had a free afternoon and evening to do whatever we wanted. I went with a couple chicas to a high-quality, wonderfully-priced makeup store called Kiko to stock up on a few things. Other students headed home for siestas or went on walks before lunchtime, which is usually between 2 and 3 pm (also known as 14:00 and 15:00). After lunch, I took a three hour nap to be rested enough to be able to participate in the Salamanca nightlife.

Around 2:00pm, some of us (Mikayla, Maggie, John and Andrew) were invited by Hans, an older student from Holland who also goes to Mester, to go to a waterfall about an hour away from Salamanca. The drive out was mostly smooth, except for the last couple kilometers which were on a pretty questionable dirt road on the side of a mountain. Surprisingly, our front-wheel-drive Fiat rental car tanked through to the end, though it did bottom out a couple times along the way. 

The walk to the waterfall was incredibly beautiful. From the top, probably about 300 meters above, we could see the roaring water and a rainbow in the mist. It was about a mile down a pretty mellow trail to get to it. Over the falls is a metal platform, sort of like the horseshoe one that extends over the Grand Canyon, which allowed us to freakishly look straight into the water from above. After we walked back up, we drove a few kilometers toward Portugal, and descended to a wide, silty river that divides Spain and Portugal. We got back at around 8:00pm, which gave us time to prepare for the night to begin.

At 21:00 (or 9 pm for you silly Americans) the group - as we call ourselves - met up for dinner at one of the restaurants we frequent called Cuatro Gatos.

After dinner we hit up an amazing cocktail bar called The Doctor where they serve the best mixed drinks that have ever existed. It takes forever to decide what to order because there are so many options; they have three different menus that are filled front and back with tantalizing cocktails. No worries, parents! There are plenty of non-alcoholic options, too! After we finished our drinks, we went to a club called Camelot to dance the night away. The night life usually continues until the sun rises here, or later (9 or 10 am), but it is physically impossible for any of us to stay up that late. It was definitely a fun-filled Friday. We have all of Saturday free, so por supuesto (of course) all of us will be relaxing to prepare ourselves to venture to Madrid on Sunday!

All of us, minus Evie and Katelyn :( at The Doctor, the amazing cocktail bar in town. In addition to our regular group, joining us were Berit's friend Izzy from Australia, Mikayla's friend Anna from Luther, and a couple others.
Pozo de los humos, the name of the amazing waterfall that we visited.
Here's a view of the road before it got super sketchy.
This rental car was a bit of a load, yet managed to not get stuck despite having its bumpers gouged on a few rocks.
Walking down the path to the waterfall. Hans was basically wearing dress clothes, yet was somehow fine hiking in them.
All of us hiking down. So blessed to have Mikayla's selfie stick!
The "gangplank" over the waterfall was pretty cool, if a bit freaky...
The waterfall, lookin' nice and brown due to all of the rain Spain has gotten lately.
Pausing for a photo break on the way down to the river, not far the waterfall. Behind us, on the far side of the river is Portugal.
The beach at the river didn't exactly look enticing... Apparently the water is usually pretty clear though. Hans said if you swim here, you need to know what you're doing, since the depth drops vertically down to 80 meters not too far out.