I trained hard to prepare my body for two weeks of punishment. I went to the gym four times a week and put my body in the best shape it has ever been in my life. But it wasn’t enough because I decided to embark on a brand of tourism that was unsustainable. Here’s how to destroy your body in four quick days:

1. Stay out until at least 4am every night. Each night drink an amount of alcohol that your body normally doesn’t see in a week.

2. Get less than 4 hours of sleep a night.

3. Halve your normal caloric intake.

4. Consider water overrated.

5. After doing the above four items, insist on walking miles a day.

On the train ride back to Valencia from Bunol, I noticed a slight pain in the back of my throat. Encouraging emails from friends the day before urged me to push it no matter what, to sacrifice myself for the greater good of fun, excitement, and notches. Yes, I must keep pushing beyond what my body is capable of. I took a nap and prepared for my date with Ana the Polish girl, who I met
the night before.

It was much easier in Spain to meet quality, foreign girls. I remember thinking of the trouble I’d have adjusting to girls back home, having to go from Godiva chocolates to Hershey bars.

Ana took me a Brazilian bar called Opera where we met up with twelve of her friends, eleven of them female. They were from Croatia, Germany, Czech Republic, Spain, and of course, Poland. Back at home I often wish to be a part of a large international circle of foreigners who come together to share laughs, drinks, and sex. I was living the dream but unable to fully enjoy it.

Excited about her newfound Spanish skills, she insisted on talking to me in Spanish. Problem is I didn’t really understand, and I just nodded my head as the pain in my throat got worse. I didn’t mind being her language guinea pig as long as I didn’t have to talk.

Opera became completely packed and all eyes were on the stage for the Capoeira demonstration. Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art that has little or no contact — it looks like a cross between ballet and gymnastics, with acrobatic kicks and moves that sometimes match with music. The demonstration by the three Brazilian men was nice, and I liked watching them balance themselves on their head while contorting their body in various directions, but I wanted the Brazilian female dancer I saw warming up on the side to take the stage.

Some women, like this Brazilian, have the ability to rotate the lower half of their body while keeping the upper half completely still — a complete mastery of the spine that is common with professional belly dancers. It was mesmerizing to watch a perfect body move perfectly; it puts you into such a spell that in this case I was convinced she is worthy to be my bride, and I don’t even believe in marriage.

By the end of her performance, the throat pain was so great that I had trouble speaking. The smoke was getting to me and my head was hurting. Ana was being nice, sitting there patiently waiting for me to take charge and be a man. But there would be no way I could service her tonight. I excused myself to leave at the night’s peak.

Every trip has its low point and for Spain it was tonight, getting ill and leaving an amazing bar and guaranteed action to return to an unbearably hot hotel room the size of a jail cell. I cursed myself for being too cheap to pay five extra euros for something bigger with air conditioning. Yes, this would be the low point, dry heaving over the toilet, desperately needing to vomit and unable to sleep. I would never fully recover.

Spain Table of Contents

Part 1: The Terminal
Part 2: Red Lights
Part 3: Hostel Game
Part 4: Soy Americano
Part 5: La Tomatina
Part 6: Unsustainable Tourism
Part 7: Doner Kebab
Part 8: Lessons
Part 9: The Chart
Part 10: Fin


  1. Oface

    yes those Brazilians women are hypnotic……..Jezus I need to visit Sao Paulo…………

    So what did you have strep throat?????? Black Plague?????

  2. Charlotte

    I also got sick while I recently travelled in Spain (not as sick as DCB). The lifestyle of traveling is obviously more physically taxing, with the lack of food and sleep, the excess alcohol, more walking than usual and staying in a room with 10 people and their germs (and for me watching an entire FC Barcelona match in pouring cold rain). But I was also thinking about how much more emotionally and mentally taxing traveling is than regular life. When you travel you are taking in every single sight for the first time, not to mention that every subway ride, every street corner you have to figure out where you are going, and every person you meet you are starting from square one. It is totally worth it but I was surprised by how much I was worn down.

  3. hedonistic

    Sounds like you had a major, major case of dehydration/exhaustion!

    But hey, there’s a big bellydance scene in DC. Check it out, you might just find yourself a bride . . .

  4. Mandy

    Rio has the best-looking women, and Bahia isn’t bad either. Sao Paulo is an enormous city, so like New York, if you run into a beautiful woman, she may be on the metro or walking down the street…but Rio and Bahia have the advantage of beaches and lots of sunshine.

    DCB, getting sick while traveling is pure hell. I’m sorry.

  5. Eugenius

    Yeah thanks for the sweaty men, I needed that………No pick of Polish or Brazillian?

    I am sure you dont care about belly dancers here in DC…..its not the same, they are old and saggy, and despite their talent are not as pleasing to watch as a ……young, hot, brazillian, who can move so good and looks so sexy you want to bang her right there on stage……. thats a much better belly dancing experience.

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