Last night my luggage was delivered to the house where I’m staying and thankfully everything arrived unscathed – you never know sometimes. I quickly put my bike together and started studying the surrounding area using I wish I was able to say that I was so excited to ride that I couldn’t sleep, but I haven’t quite adjusted to the time change just yet and slept a solid 9 and half hours. That’s a big improvement from the night before when I woke up at 2:45 am and couldn’t fall back asleep.

It had been quite chilly here the past few days, but those days are uncommon in Andalucia – it’s usually sunny and warm and today was just that.

All I had on my schedule was a short and easy ride and run to get acquainted with the area and good thing it was just that. I was distracted the entire time. To my right I had the snow capped peaks of the Sierra Nevada and vistas of the valley floor to my left. I have to admit, the ride was a bit challenging. Then again, what am I supposed to expect living in the hills of Granada? To let my heart rate settle, I’d ride into small towns along the way, explore the narrow streets, and get chased by dogs.

One thing I absolutely love about riding here, besides the hills and vistas, is the drivers. As in, people behind the wheel of a car. When someone would pass me, they would give me 6 feet OR MORE! If a car was coming from the opposite direction, the car behind me would WAIT TO PASS! A driver even waited for me while I waited for a car to pass so I could turn left. It felt like a fairy tale… until I felt my legs burning on the next hill I climbed.

Speaking of drivers and cyclists, you really ought to read this blog post by a friend of mine, Loren Pokorny.

As for living in Spain, I love it! Especially grocery shopping! I don’t go to grocery stores here, I wander the narrow streets and find markets. Each morning, vendors bring their carts into small plazas and set up shop with freshly picked fruits and vegetables. If I want bread, I head to the local panaderia and grab a freshly baked loaf. The same goes for meat, I walk in and ask for a cut of what I want and it’s cut then and there.

My spanish speaking skills are definitely improving too. Very little english is spoke in the house. Actually, it’s only used when I can’t think of the word I’m trying to say in spanish. Even then, my host mother hands me the dictionary.