FORTY-EIGHTH MOVEMENT: GIBRALTAR
Gibraltar, Gibraltar, Great Britain
I woke up at 07:50, showered, dressed, packed my bags, and exited the dorm room (moving as stealthily as possible to avoid disturbing the others, who were all still sleeping). I then left the hostel around 08:40 and walked to the Prado del San Sebastián Bus Station in Seville. At 09:14, the bus to La Linea pulled up and I stored my luggage and sat down in my assigned seat (this is one of the few instances during my travels when almost everyone on board was actually looking for and sitting in their assigned seats – odd for a regional bus). At 09:32, the bus backed out of the platform area and, a couple of minutes later, we departed the bus station. I then rode the bus toward La Linea, the Spanish city closest to Gibraltar (on the border and within walking distance). I dabbled between reading and sleeping throughout the journey, but did not make much headway in either endeavor. The bus made its first stop at 11:10 and several passengers departed. Further on, around noon, we had a ten minute break at a roadside cafe. Next, we continued on to Tarifa, stopping there at 12:42 (most passengers got off here to enjoy the beaches). Driving on through the hilly countryside, I could see the strait and Morocco in the distance as we moved parallel to Spain’s coast. Also, I saw quite a few modern dragons perched on the hills and spinning in the wind. The bus drove on to Algeciras and I could see Gibraltar in the distance, a giant tree-covered rock standing alone. We stopped at the Algeciras Bus Station at 13:14 and the driver refueled the bus before continuing on at 13:28. The bus reached its final stop at La Linea at 13:55. I exited the bus, grabbed my bags, and walked south to the border with Gibraltar. I entered in to the Spanish checkpoint, showed my passport, and was waved through. Upon realizing that that was it, I walked back and asked for an exit stamp, but was told that they don’t give exit stamps there and that I could get an entry stamp at the British checkpoint, so that’s what I did (I pray that this does not screw me over when I plan on reentering the Schengen Zone later in August – we’ll see).
After receiving an entry stamp for Gibraltar, I passed through the border and walked south toward the city center where the hotel I had booked a room with was located. I walked along the main road which happens to cut right across the airport runway; obviously Gibraltar does not have many flights coming in and out, but when they do they have to shut down the road and pedestrian pathway. After walking across the runway, I walked through the center and found my hotel (not far from the Catholic cathedral). I then checked in, went up to my room, showered, and relaxed. I didn’t do much while in my room and I decided to push seeing the sites in Gibraltar to a later date. After 19:30, I went out to grab dinner. First, I stopped at an ATM to get British pounds (apparently not necessary since everyone seems to take euros here), then I found a nice restaurant on the Main Street where I had nachos, a steak and ale pie, chips (i.e. “French fries”), and beer. After that full meal, I walked further north on Main Street to Grand Casemates Square, found a convenience store, bought a couple of beers, apple flavored water, and a chocolate bar with Turkish delight inside it. I then returned to my hotel room and rested some more. Being very tired, I eventually passed out some time after 22:00. I woke up a couple times during the night, but I mostly slept until nearly noon the next day.