Eventually, Eduardo from Couchsurfing arrived, and found me cramped up and creaky in the Sala de Espera — the Waiting Room (and not, as I’d originally texted, in the Sala de Esperanza, which, if you know me – and Spanish – is probably more appropriate: The Hope Room.)
Eduardo speaks English and French and was off from work that day, generously choosing to spend his time giving me a quick tour of the really quite lovely city of Zaragosa during my long layover.
Eduardo and I got coffee and tapas, and then took in the sites, with that Spanish mix of ugly, blocky buildings on the outskirts of the city and crazy cool medieval streets winding through the center. And of course, the Plaza Mayor, or Town Square.
We had a beer in one of the amazing little bars hidden in the crannies of the walls of the city. There were fabulous churches, and I saw my first glance of the Arabic style so famous in Spain.
Zaragosa also has some particularly interesting modern architecture, including a funky bridge that apparently cost millions and sits unused next to a newer (and much uglier) one.
There was a nice central fountain and some really beautiful views.
Oh, and they also have a funicular. A FUNICULAR!
Anyway, at some point, my Ride to Nowhere texted (God bless cellphones!) to say “Oops, not getting you at 2pm, but 5pm.” D’oh!
Eduardo graciously brought me back to his apartment, which was a really nice 2-bedroom with a terrible view and an airplane route directly overhead. (“They only come at 8am, 3pm, and 10pm,” Eduardo told me. Glad something in Spain is on time!)
We had some pasta, Spanish-style – spaghetti, a jar of salsa, and tuna fish – which was actually really tasty, believe it or not – and watched Satellite TV in Arabic, Italian, French, Spanish and Polish. Totally cool!
I spent a really lovely day with Eduardo, just chatting, touring around, and eating.
Eventually, Eduardo brought me back to the station, where I sat on my pack and anxiously awaited my Ride to Nowhere….