I’ve officially moved from Ibiza. Nostalgia has hit me smack dab in the face. Writing from Barcelona right now, I look at photos and my eyes well up with tears. It was a year that I didn’t expect, and instead of being full of wild parties, it was full of important learning lessons.
From dogs slapping my ass and wild grandmothers to being confused my the island (there were also parties too!), the island never ceased to amaze me. I remember arriving and hearing people rave about the it. “It has a special energy,” they would tell me. They explained, “it will trap you in.”
I once picked up an Argentine hitchhiker on her way to work (totally normal in Ibiza, don’t freak out). She said, “this island will suck you in and spit you back up. And if you’re strong enough, will welcome you back in.”
I thought she was jive talking, and didn’t really have a reference to base her explanations off of. Until now, of course.
After just two days of being gone, I feel a void. A typically void that is common after having a positive experience in any place. But perhaps, just perhaps, my need for Ibiza is special and may warrant future visits.
In the midst of my nostalgia, here is the first post reflecting on the island: the 7 things I already miss the most.
Sobrasada, a traditional sausage from Ibiza (also found in other Balearic Islands) had me hooked since the first day I tried it. Squeezing the mushy insides from a transparent casing and spreading it on traditional pan payes gives me almost as much joy as sleeping.
Even better? Put it in the oven for a 1-2 minutes after spreading it on the bread and see the orange tinted grease oozing over the bread, leaving an even more savory taste in your mouth.
Originally used as a celebratory dessert around Easter, the cheesecake-like cake proved to be very addictive. The yerba buena added gives a unique taste and refreshing lift (Try to make your own! Two recipes here and here).
3. Pan amb alioli
Pan payes, alioli and olives on the side are excellent starters. Who cares about garlic breath, it’s irresistible. Any restaurant that doesn’t offer this at the beginning of the meal is a huge disappointment.
Also referred to as “those damn Ibiza dogs.” The first time I saw one, it was a domesticated creature with its owners around Ibiza Town. I immediately thought of the dog “Skeletor” in the movie 50/50. These dogs were said to have been brought to the Mediterranean by the Phoneticians. Just a few weeks ago along the Sant Josep highway I saw a pack of around 25 of them. Scared me half to death. You can also see a statue of them at the roundabout near the port in Ibiza Town.
A liquor common in the Balearic Islands made from thyme, its sweetness makes it better than yerbas ibicencas and its smoothness can even cure a sore throat. I love it so much, I have many times shared this love with my friends via whatsapp voice memos.
6. Puig d’en Valls
Among friends, we refer to this small town outside of Ibiza Town as “The Puig” (pronounced, “the poooch”). It’s a place where ibicenco is spoken more than Spanish, and old women still stare at you when you walk into their grocery store. I had to pass by it every time I went into “the big city” and was entertained without fail.
7. The fact that everything about it is completely absurd
From the people who walk off the plane like they’re in an Estrella Damm commercial to old hippies screaming at you not to touch their things at various mercadillos around the island, it’s a confusing mix of people and happenings that can only be described as absurd. Every heard of cultural appropriation? They’re the queens of it! If you have a big house in Ibiza, chances are you have decorated it with between 25-37 giant golden Buddha statues. The fact that its inhabited by the most beautiful people I’ve ever seen makes up for it.
Regardless of the aburdity or the cultural appropriation or having it spit me out at times, Ibiza was everything they said it would be and more. It may seem cliche, stupid, and ridiculous, but believe me, it will be unforgettable in any way you allow it to be.
What do you miss about Ibiza?