It’s been almost a week since my last confession, I mean blog. It’s nice not to ‘have to’ write anything until I feel the urge. As I sit in my room during siesta with the fan going and Steve beside me reading our Lonely Planet Spain book I am feeling the urge to write.
We felt like we were home
We arrived in Barcelona on Monday 30 May 2016 and it was like coming home.
In our travel’s so far we have been tourists doing touristy things and the places we have been have been inland. Landing in Barcelona the smell and familiarity of the ocean was obvious from the moment we arrived. The sun is shining, there are massive seagulls in this place and our first abode for our stay was a 4th storey apartment a stone throw from the beach. Heaven!
The first thing we did was put on our shorts and head to the beach to soak up the rays and the atmosphere. With rumbling tummies, we postponed walking in the sand and headed to a friendly looking eating-establishment for lunch – surprise, surprise.
We ordered a white wine sangria (because in case you do not know you can have white or red wine sangria, something I didn’t know) and a tuna sandwich – I had a hankering. Steve had octopus on potato tapas.
We sat there and relaxed considerably and like I said it was like we had arrived home. Okay the sangria ‘may’ have helped as well as being so close to the ocean but knowing we are staying in Barcelona for a number of weeks is very comforting.
For the three nights/ four days we did very little other than wander the local streets, walk on the beach, dip our toes in the Mediterranean Sea – which is frickin cold – and eat and drinking lovely local food and drinks.
For the next three nights we stayed in a two-star hotel about 1km from the beach, Oasis Hotel. It was right on the edge of the Gothic district which we have fallen in love with.
We have wandered and meandered through the twists and turns of the small streets, ooo’d and aaah’d at the buildings, castle-like structures, churches and old ruins.
We found the infamous Barcelona markets by accident and OMG the food. The fruit looks so fresh and tasty, the nuts smell delish, the seafood is fresh, fresh, fresh and everything is served with a glass or jug of your favourite beverage.
There is a completely different relationship to meat or parts of an animal here. The meat suppliers sell and display every part of the animal from the trotters and rump steaks to the stomach and eyeballs. I freaked our girls out with the photo below.
What do you think???
I am about to go over my self-prescribed 500-word blog limit but in the name of creativity I shall continue.
We visited the Barcelona Picasso Museum which was fabulous. We were taken back by his fascination with the female form in his early work. ‘Rather erotic’ was how Steve described it. His line drawings were a favourite of mine. The amount of detail he managed to incorporate in to his work was marvellous. His work made we want to take up pencil/pen and paper and draw again.
The museum is a really good collection of his work and is set out and explained very well. We both thoroughly enjoyed it.
By chance I have found an awesome coffee shop Cafés El Magni’fico, just down the road from Placa de Santa Maria and about the same distance in the other direction from a store clearly named after a friend of ours ‘Olle’.
In our exploration of the underground Metro we had the pleasure of taking a ride in a squishy train. It is thus labelled because due to striking transport workers and less trains, a larger number of people squished on to the train. As entertaining as it was, we walked from then on during the 3-day strike.
I braved a Barcelona beauty salon to get my legs waxed which was a much-needed highlight for me. (Sylvia/Dani/Angela: you would have been proud of me)
Another random delight we discovered while wandering was ‘La Basilica Galeria’. It’s an astonishing collection of beautiful handmade jewellery and artwork from the traditional to the gothic. If you can find it amongst the streets, then it is definitely worth a visit.
My sister Danielle travelled around and lived in Spain before settling in Perth – she loved it and we are starting to understand why. Thanks sis xx
I mentioned sitting in our room during siesta. To give you more info, Steve and I have moved in to a host family home while we learn Spanish for two whole weeks. We are looking forward to the classes – feeling nervous and excited about going back to school for two weeks. But we figure it will set us up well to travel around Spain.
So, stay tuned for Española-learning and more Barcelona stories.