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beers, brats, and salt mine showers

Happy Thursday! Are you taking time to check-in with yourself and give yourself the care, love, and attention you need? If not, it’s perfectly okay to set aside time for yourself to do whatever you want/need to do during ‘me time.’ Maybe your thing is yoga, meditation, running, reading, tending to a pallet garden you built, sewing some pillowcases for your home decor, making a dress to match your homemade mask, paddle boarding, refurbishing furniture, tooling around with some new tools, or even playing animal crossing with family and friends, but whatever you want to do during your assigned ‘me time,’ make sure you’re doing it and giving yourself a break.

If you didn’t get a chance to read yesterday’s post - “wine and mustard at Château Virant” - you can click here to read about a lovely and delicious winery tour I experienced in France! Otherwise, if you’re all caught up, buckle up and let’s continue this journey together! We’re spending a quick night in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, followed by our first day/night in Salzburg!

When we left France, we had a one night layover in Spain since it was cheaper to do that than to fly direct to Salzburg. I will admit right now that I booked our AirBnB for the night, and it was awful — two twin beds pushed together with no air conditioning. I made up for it when we got to Salzburg, but more on that later. When we landed and got settled in Palma, we got a Taxi (which was one of the most complicated Taxi ordering experiences I’ve ever had) and found our way to Palma city center for dinner. Whereas so much of our trip up until that point had been spent with my boyfriend’s family and extended family in France, it finally felt like we were having a true date as we sat drinking Spanish wine and eating delicious tapas. We talked for a long time, reminiscing about meeting for the first time back in 2014, about trying to date a couple years ago, about life’s weird twists and turns, and about how much fun we’d had together in France. Some parts of the conversation were a bit clunky, but I wouldn’t trade those clunky parts for anything else. After dinner we made our way to a speakeasy with fancy craft cocktails where we sipped on mysterious concoctions and continued our chats before heading to what can only be described as an Americanized-ish gastropub. We ordered another round of drinks - his the girly-looking tall drink, mine the cocktail with a spicy pepper on top. It was a calm, relaxing night together, enjoying each other’s company on a pretty quiet night in Palma. The places we did visit were either pretty empty or closing earlier than usual, but it was just nice to walk through the winding streets of Spain together, taking in the scenery. We called it an early night since we had another day of travel in the morning.

We didn’t sit together on the plane to Salzburg, which was fine by me because I passed out before the plane took off and woke up upon landing (I never used to sleep on planes because I had a fear of getting Incepted… that fear completely dissipated once I started doing more flying for comedy and acting gigs and for traveling Europe). I waited for him outside the gate when we landed and was greeted with a kiss when he got off the plane. Little memories like that are the ones I love the most.

I mentioned before that I made up for our crappy Spanish AirBnB with the place I found for us in Salzburg. We were the first people to stay at the spot I found for us in Austria, and it was absolutely amazing. Exposed salt mine walls in the shower? Yes, please. Not to jump the gun, but while we were out and about in Salzburg later that evening, my boyfriend expressed to me that he would like to stay another night, so we did. I was so excited because Salzburg was the place I picked for us to visit, and he admitted that he probably wouldn’t have thought to ever visit it (and he ended up loving it).

We found a proper beer garden where we each got large Steins of beer, as well as soft pretzels with mustard. We people watched (which, given the current state of the world, is a luxury I am missing deeply), drank our steins, ate our pretzels, and got some fellow tourists to take our picture (and we, theirs, of course). It was so fun seeing the large wooden kegs get hit open while stein upon stein were filled for tourists and locals, alike. I even have one of the coasters from the beer garden - Augustiner Bräu - sitting on my desk as I write (I snagged a handful for my boyfriend and shoved them in my purse while he went to get mustard for the pretzels).

After the beer garden, we decided to make our way to a restaurant recommended to him by one of his trivia participants (he moonlights as a trivia host and is a very good and entertaining one at that). On our walk to the restaurants, however, we did walk by a riverside park and (obviously) played a little bit (even though it had started to threaten rain). If you find someone who still possesses the same childlike wonder as you and makes time for play, don't let that person go, ladies and gents. Life is long and full of ups and downs, so you definitely want someone walking with you who will stop and play when given the chance.

When we got to dinner at Gasthaus Zwettler’s, it started raining. Luckily, although the restaurant was packed inside, we were able to get a table outside under an umbrella. I got a delicious Austrian beer and an order of Wienerschnitzel and Alex (my boyfriend) got beer and Bratwurst. Both dinners came with delicious sides, and it was so much food. We finished dinner and headed to another spot recommended by one of his trivia friends where we had one of the most delicious stout beers of my entire life. One of the highlights of Beffa Bar (and the stories Alex likes to tell) is that the bar has no actual menu. When Alex approached the bartender and asked about obtaining some menus, the bartender replied that he was the menu. Alex told him what we liked, and he produced two of the most delicious beers we’ve ever had. The bartender warned Alex to not let me drink the stout too quickly since it was like an 11% ABV, but Alex likes to tell people that he turned to talk to some of our tablemates/new friends and when he turned back, the beer was gone. I didn't instantaneously chug it by any means, but Alex is a talker and can lose track of time when caught up in conversations (especially when he’s chatting with a guy who plays for the Austrian version of the NFL). He is my chatty craft beer and sports man, and I love him.

It was during our night at the man-menu Beffa Bar that he expressed wanting to stay in Salzburg another night. We did end up extending our stay, especially after the day we had on the Sound of Music Bus Tour, which you can read all about tomorrow!! Have you ever gotten gotten swept away in a conversation with a new friend like Alex did at Beffa Bar? Let me know! Subscribe in the e-mail submission box below and reach out, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and reach out to me on the “contact” page. I’m so happy you're here and that I’ve been receiving a lot of really incredible stories, questions, and feedback from a community all over the globe! Other people’s stories that I’ve gotten to read via e-mail, text, tweet, DM, etc. recently bring me such smiles, and I am so grateful for all of it! I hope I get to hear all about whatever stories you’ve been thinking about as we’ve been on this virtual journey together! Also, I've said it before and I'll say it again, if you have any restaurants/eateries/pubs/coffee shops/ice cream joints/theatres/lookout spots you would recommend in other countries or even in your current home town or city, I'm absolutely 100% all ears!! I couldn’t do this without you! So THANK YOU! From the bottom of my heart, truly, thank you.



P.S. - here are a few more photos of our first day in Salzburg, including the salt mine shower! There are also a few more goodies (like videos of us playing in the park) on my Instagram post here!

P.S. - If you want to catch up from the beginning on this series of travel adventures, here's a cheat sheet to the posts (in order in which they were published):

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