Got your plane tickets? Check.
Got on the plane? Yep.
Landed in your place? Sure have!
Found where you’re staying? Check.
Seen some cool stuff? Oh yes.
Next on my recommended to-do list? Find an amazing local breakfast place.
Because, I can happily say from my adventures in Europe and living in Spain for the past four months, that finding my favorite breakfast place has made all the difference.
When you live in a place for more than two weeks, you have to get to know locals. One hundred percent. Without a doubt. All goofiness aside, it is very hard to expect to get to know the culture and the place you will call home for some time and really, truly soak up the place without getting to know people who have lived there for all of their life. What a better way to do that than by finding some great place that serves yummy breakfast?
(The one and only small disclaimer: Spanish breakfast is delicious. Simple toast with tomato or olive oil, and arguably the world’s best coffee. Pair that with a culture who really likes slow breakfasts and socializing with the neighbors while eating, and you get a top-notch scientific rating of “not too shabby.” I’ve heard beans on toast in England is another story…)
Find out what breakfast looks like in the culture you’re living in. Do people even eat breakfast? Is it a big deal? What time? Then, start scouting out options. Look for local. Mom and pop places are a great place to start. But who knows, you may find your favorite at something more like a chain. Smaller is better though. Once you know you like a place, pay attention to who works there. Breakfast is one of those things where the same people usually work most days of the week. Don’t be afraid to ask someone’s name! You’d be surprised how much people remember you and your name when you care about theirs. Get to know them, see them out and about, and make one of your first local friends.
In Spain, my best friends and I were lucky enough to find ours the second week of living here. It’s called Vega 10, and it’s a gem. It’s a tapas restaurant for lunch and dinner, but their inexpensive, delicious breakfasts are our favorite. Our first friend was Raquel, who worked breakfast every week morning, and she started calling us “Los Chicos” (the guys). We were regulars in a heartbeat. Then, what a treat to begin seeing Raquel, as well as Clara and her husband (the owners), in town. We visited Roman ruins together, and I stop by every day to check in on everyone, even when I’m not eating there. I was even invited into the kitchen one day and spent hours cooking alongside of them, learning how to make the tapas.
From my side of the world to yours… I hope you find a great breakfast place and love all your traveling adventures.
|Enjoying Vega 10 breakfast with dear friends who came in town|
|Spending the day at Roman Ruins with our friend Raquel|
|The day I was invited into the kitchen to learn how to cook some tapas. This one is on fire!|
|My favorite tostada and cafe con leche (spanish breakfast)
Jansen Nash is the Spring 2014 CEA MOJO in Seville, Spain.
He is currently a sophomore at Clemson University.
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