Vamos: Zumaia, País Vasco

Have you ever wanted to go somewhere for a really long time? Like, two years? A place that was 20 miles away? A distance that I used to think of as a drive to the mall became an insurmountable barrier between me and Zumaia, the nearby Basque coastal town. Why? Because I was waiting for a certain curly haired girl to take me, after she tempted me with stories of dried octopus soup and sunshine.

She finally did.

 We went during jaiak (fiestas in Spanish, the town festival) and the atmosphere was jovial. The sun made its post-winter debut, and tiny huts proffering clothes, trinkets, food, and fun lined the water promenade.

And finally saw the famous Zumaia flysch, rock formations that date back 100 million years. Our guide took us to the 'townie' beach and then, since she knows me so well, on a tour of Zumaia's culinary highlights: vermouth with a dash of bitters before lunch, a sun-soaked picnic in the park of roast chicken and an entire tortilla washed down with a cold bottle of Zumaia txakoli, a liqueur tasting with an impressive spread of orujos, aguardientes, and other liqueurs. And, of course, all finished off with a gintonic al fresco, perched on the wall of the estuary.

She knows exactly how to win my heart. Gora Zumaia!