Years in the Apartment: 0.25, since December when I moved in between training camps in Calpe.
Estimated Number of Days Spent in the Apartment per Year: As yet to be determined. So far I’ve definitely been gone more than I’ve been home. Would be nice if that tilts a bit back in Girona’s favour in the next while, which it might just do (no training camps or long distance travel planned in foreseeable future).
Number of Stairs Between the Street and the Front Door: Four flights. Three sets of stairs per flight of about five or six stairs which puts it in the 60-72 stairs. I have a lift too but it likes breaking down (like the time I got home at 01:30 AM with 60 kg of luggage…) and I try avoiding it when I have the energy to run the stairs.
Five Favorite Features and/or Possessions
- Does my girlfriend count? Considering she lives in the UK and is barely in Girona I suppose not…
- The stone wall in the bedroom just rocks my world. Actually, all the outer walls rock my world. It’s an old building so it has really thick walls, high ceilings (in places) and a giant wooden front door leading onto the street. All things that hold meaning to me.
- Coming from , a spiral staircase is really cool to me; I even remember the first time I saw one, in a random place called Maarjiesfontein (Buddies Fountain) in South Africa at the age of +/-14. It was a holiday highlight and the whole family loved it. Now I have one of my own.
- The hidden dish drying rack in the cupboard above my sink. First saw something like this is Milan in 2006 and have always wanted it since, it was a nice surprise when I opened the cupboard to find it.
- Lastly but certainly not least, bike parking! The little nook by the spiral staircase allows me to fit in two bikes with ease and a whole lot of spare wheels, a foot pump and other such things under it. This might not be enough as my CX bike is on its way along with two of my GF’s bikes, but that’s just us being greedy. Bottom line is, the place is bike friendly.
Favorite Secret Spot in Girona
As I’m still new to Girona this I’m still finding my hidden spots. In fact I hope to find a lot more when my CX bike gets there. One place that springs to mind is a little family restaurant up a side street that I stumbled upon once. It’s really basic and there are often a few people in there who are obviously visiting the family, not paying customers. I’ve been there for a quiet lunch on my own several times already, with more to come.
Why live in Girona?
I’ve lived in ten different towns/cities in six different countries and have been racing in Europe for ten years now. When I went to find an apparent in Girona in October 2014 it was my first visit, ever; but I still knew that I wasn’t there to just check it out, I was there to find a place to live.
I’d spoken to enough people about Girona beforehand and it was a combination of how they said things or the things that they didn’t say (as opposed to the things they did say) that made me know that it was going to suit me. Especially as I’ve gone through similar processes so often in the past.
I often walk through the narrow streets of the old town and think to myself, wow, I actually feel like I live in a castle. Who wouldn’t want that!? Only thing I’d like to change is for the Girona airport to have more flights (like it used to). As for learning Spanish and making “civilian” friends, that’s high up on my to-do list.