|what is today... sunday?! ha. we cannot even seem to keep track of the days. we left from paris at 7:25am on a TGV (high speed train) to come down to biarritz. my mom picked us up from the train station and we went straight to her house for lunch. it was the first good meal we have had since arriving in europe. in paris we either guessed what the menu said as it was all in french and got some not so good stuff or we went to places that had the menu in english and it was all tourista food. anyways, moving along...
jet lag has began to catch up with me and i am finding myself falling asleep all the time!!! friday afternoon one of my great aunts stopped by with her husband. i fell asleep in the lounge chair outside. after they left my machi and thachi took us for a drive over to spain. you just drive right in the country... no border control or anything. we stopped in a town called zugaramurdi. it is a town that is said to have witches and it is also one of joey's favorite villages. we stopped at joey's favorite bar to have the best sangria i have ever had. in front of the bar there is a church that is from the 12-13 hundreds, CRAZY! there was a mason's sign above the door of the church too... interesting. we continued on to another lil village for dinner. it was another great meal and really good desserts.
saturday my mom woke us up with fresh chocolatines (chocolate croissants) and milk. at 9am it was already 85 degrees. after breakfast we headed off through the mountains. i can't keep track of where we are when we head into the mountains. there are all these winding lil roads that connect the villages. we stopped for lunch at this old basque restaurant that had all these canals running through it. many of the bridges in these villages are from the romans. it was so ridiculously hot and humid yesterday so we went to see some caves. there are caves here that have caveman drawings here. the cave we went into had thousands of stalagmites and a river running through it. it was so very cold in there too. the guide said that there is evidence that man lived in the cave 13,000 years ago!!! chris and i loved the caves! we then headed to my dad's family's village of lasaka and sumbilla. josephina who owns a bar in lasaka was not there however, she was in france buying flowers. so we wondered around the lil town. there were the neatest canals with old steps that led from people's garden to the water, more roman bridges, and a magnificant church up on a hill. sumbilla was a little farther down the road and a lil smaller of a village. we went through the cemetary and saw grave stones of ybarra (my dad's mom's maiden name) and alzugaray (my dad's dad's name). there was a garro in there somewhere too but it was stinkin hot and i was getting pooped. everything is soooooo old here it blows you away. some of the houses are built with wooden dowls and not even nails. modern civilization is beginning to move into these towns however and you can see the changes.
today my thachi took us for another ride to his and my machi's village. lekuine and ayherre. i saw where my machi was born, where my mom was born, the church that my machi and thachi were baptised, gave communinion and married in. we saw where my thachi rode his bike to pick up milk and sell bread. we saw their schools and colleges and the family homes. every person in the basque country seems to be some kind of cousin of ours!!! after our little trip we went to my mom's again for a good lunch and then she brought us to her work so we could use a computer (with an english keyboard!) and check out her factory. they make beautiful furniture here. now we are going back to machi's for a party in our names. there should be a million people i do not know that all speak french or basque. me and chris will be sure to load up on wine!! tomorrow we are taking a lil train up a mountain with machi and buying lots of presents. tuesday morning we leave to toulosse and make our way to italy.
i will probably post again tommorrow after the party. jim and tempa... i am convined you should go to paris for you honeymoon, it was unbelievable! au revoir...
p.s. i will have more pics tomorrow too...