(This post combines 2 days, so if you don’t want to read about travel, scroll down until you see the first picture!)

My alarm went off at 5:30 am so I could get to the airport for my trip to Spain! I knew I had a long day (days) ahead of me with no sleep, so starting the day with 4 hours of sleep was not so ideal. I quickly got ready, finished packing, and ate a big breakfast. My first flight went quickly, and I flew into Detroit, where I had a 4 (or 5?) hour layover.

Our flight from Detroit to Amsterdam was about 8 hours long, but it flew by! I grabbed a decaf coffee with pumpkin spice in it before we boarded, so that kept me occupied during take off. Almost immediately my dad and I started going over our presentations, and I practiced mine a few times. There’s nothing like someone talking to themselves on a plane, right? 🙂 The food was actually pretty good on the plane, but I was still happy that I grabbed the salad. I can’t really sleep well on planes, so while my parents (and almost everyone else on the plane) slept, I watched What to Expecting When You’re Expecting, and Katy Perry’s documentary movie thing. It kept me busy.

We landed in Amsterdam and only had an hour to get through customs and security and run across the airport to our next flight. I did get to appreciate the stores full of delicious European chocolate and wooden clogs though! I also demanded that I find a Dutch pastry before we got on the plane, and luckily there was one right on the way!

Seriously, how amazing do these pastries look? They were amazing, and I have to admit that I was feeling pretty sad that I hadn’t bought more than 1 each:) Our flight from Amsterdam to Valencia went pretty smoothly, and I was happy to arrive. We got in at 9:45 am, which was almost 4 am where I live, so I had already been awake for almost 24 hours at this point.

Our taxi driver was nice enough to drive us around the Old City and give us a mini history listen before dropping us off at the hotel. We checked in and dumped our stuff off in the room before going straight down to the slide review for our talk later that day. Talk about being tight on time! Nothing like traveling for 24 hours and showing up in yoga pants and a sweatshirt to a meeting. Luckily they had tea and tons of pastries there (yummmm!), so the sugar kept me awake.

After we were done with the meeting I was able to take a 15 minute nap before having to get up and get ready for the meeting. I sat for two hours on a panel before getting up to give my own portion of the lecture, and it went really well! After my talk we attended a post lecture cocktail party where people in the audience had the opportunity to speak to us. At this point I had been up for 32 hours, so I was really struggling!

We went back to the hotel to quickly change and then head out with a group of people to the old city for dinner!

Seafood Paella. I didn’t eat this because I was too busy gagging, but I did eat the other meat paella!

We ate and ate and ate for about 3 hours, and it was all so delicious! We had plates of cheese, meats, veggies, paella, and tapas. It was all so good, but I could hardly keep my eyes open! We decided to walk around the city for about an hour before heading back to the hotel. Honestly, in many ways I think that nighttime is the best time to walk around a city, especially in Europe. The night life is great, and the old buildings look fantastic in the dark!

Valencia Cathedral in the Plaza de la Virgen

After walking around for a bit we headed back home to go to bed. We fell asleep around midnight, so I had been awake for about 37 hours (minus the 15 minute nap), so I was exhausted! Plus, we had a full day of sightseeing planned the next day! (I also promise that day 3 recap will be more interesting because there’s no travel or lecturing involved)!

Now it’s your turn to share! Are you a plane sleeper, or do you have a hard time sleeping while sitting up? Do you like trying new foods, or do you like to stick to what you know?