02 February 2009

I think it's time for a story

Some of my names may be confused, because I'm having trouble recalling ALL of the names, but this is as close to truth as I can remember.

I went to Spain when I was 18 years old. And....I went to Pamplona for the running of the bulls. I went with five other people in my group. The town gets so crowded for the festival, that we had no plans for getting a hotel. We road a bus northward wearing the appropriate white and red (arriving at around 2pm), checked our stuff into a church, and started drinking. Three of the guys, Miguel, Rick and Kim, were planning on running. We outlined a get-our-asses-out-of-here plan, which was this: If we get separated, we'll meet back in front of this church tomorrow, after the bulls run. Deal.

Okay, back to my story. So there were six of us, and since we didn't have a hotel or anything, our honest-to-jesus plan was to just stay up all night drinking. We made it until about 7pm before we lost anyone. Chris/Jon/Mike (was your name Chris? I think it was) had some sort of horrifying staph infection ON HIS FACE that kept him from drinking, so when he and Miguel disappeared, we figured that at least one of them was consciously aware of what was happening.

At some point some guy bumped into me with his cigarette, and we were both drunk enough that it stayed there burning me for like 2 seconds before either one of us reacted. Even blind, stumbling drunk, that hurt.

A brief aside: I have a lot of scars on my hands. I'm missing two fingertips (one MUCH more dramatically than the other), and I have a mangled palm from a skin graft related to the more dramatic finger mangling. I also have two cigarette burn scars on my hands. They are both from my summer in Spain.

So I got some ice, out of my drink I think? Christy wanted some ice to chew on, I wouldn't give up my precious treasure, and she took off, pissed, by herself. This was I think at 930ish. This left me, Rick, Kim and Lois still operating as a group. 1am Chris(?) reappears, sans Miguel. At 3am, Miguel somehow finds us again.

Second aside: None of us had cell phones, this was way back in 2001, before everyone had cell phones, and we were in a foreign country besides that. I have no idea how we continued to find each other in what was an incredibly crowded, dark, and drunken atmosphere.

At around 4am, I've been drinking for 10 hours, and I NEED to go to bed. Somewhere. How about the park? Rick and Lois don't feel good about leaving me, young, blonde, American girl, alone, asleep in the park. Here is their proposed solution:

"What about over there?"

"The highway median??"

"It's grassy, it'll be comfortable."


"Look, we'll cover you with cardboard boxes, so no one will be able to see you, AND you'll be warm."


"I'm serious, I promise we'll come back for you in the morning, besides, we can meet at the church."

"Let's keep walking."

But really, our stamina was waning, and right after that, we were all looking for a spot to lay our heads. How about the park?

Miguel: NO! you know where I was sleeping before? I was at this beautiful castle, with fresh grass, it'll be perfect!

So we forgo the park to return to Miguel's "castle." Which turns out to be a dirt patch in front of a cathedral. We slept on the cobblestones in front of said cathedral, while it rained lightly, sharing a single airplane blanket. There is not a doubt in my mind that we were sleeping in urine.

The next morning, we found Christy, asleep on the bench in front of the meet-up church, with a homeless man braiding her hair.

Thus concludes the story of the only time in my life that I turned down sleeping in a box, and that turned out to be a mistake.


  1. I have to think that sleeping in a box is always a mistake unless you previously had nothing to sleep in. At least you got to practice your drinking skills.

  2. Well at least you were drinking!

  3. Really girl ... you need to take a walk on the wild side, your life was WAY too staid growing up!! *giggles*

  4. I enjoy this story more and more every time it is told. Trufax. - Daphne

  5. I am so jealous you went to Pamplona. What an awesome experience and of course, a great story.

  6. It sounds (kind of) like fun. When I was younger we went to a bull fight - but no bull running. Thanks for sharing this story - I love your writing style.

  7. But was it any good? (The braid, that is!)

  8. That sounds like the most un-fun anyone has ever had.

  9. You can't make that up!

    And you know, life is really about experiences like these, not where you worked or how much money you had,etc. That was beautiful and I needed to be taken 'somewhere' this morning. You never disappoint Grace!

  10. Sounds like my teens, minus the bulls. I have one cigarette burn scar in between my breasts from a drunk chick hugging me and having the head of the butt I was smoking fall down my shirt.

    My second one is right above the crack of my ass. That one came from another drunk chick hugging me with a cigarette in her hand, burning my hair with it, freaking out over the burnt hair smell and the dropping the butt down the back of my pants. Unbelievably nasty burns!

  11. Now that's a story! I think it's very cool that you had that experience; cigarette burn, urine bed and all.

  12. I bet you never would have ever guessed that you would have to say "I declined sleeping in a box and it was a mistake."

  13. LMAO....ah, if only you'd been fully appraised of your options. Why not sleep IN the church? Did they allow that?
    Still...cool experience.
    Don't even get me started on hands...it's the only body part I consistently damage.