Once upon a time, when plane tickets were cheap and travel was easy, Adrienne and I spent a little over 24 hours in Barcelona. With little time to spend in this glorious metropolis, my photographs feel sparse.
I only took two analog photographs, and the rest are digital.
Last night, while I was procrastinating studying for a ridiculously easy exam, I rediscovered some of the photographs I had taken. My aversion to digital is such that I abandoned a lot of my photographs, thinking them to be worthless. Luckily, I found some images from our trip that are full of memories, sunshine, Spanish, Parc Güell, and the lovely vistas that Barcelona has to offer.
So, here is the story of our trip to Barcelona, told from memory and saturated in nostalgia.
Adrienne and I arrived at the Barcelona airport at about 22:00, and quickly realized that we had little no idea to get to our hostel. I had to scramble together whatever I had left of my high school Spanish, jumbled with Italian, but we got on the bus from the airport and made our way to whatever stop we ended up getting off at. We were both exhausted- travel had just finished, and I had been in Turkey for 10+ days.
We eventually found our hostel, Backpackers BCN Casanova (good place, good price, good location) and entered our room. Immediately, we smelled cologne, and saw enormous white sneakers scattered. Adrienne and I both knew what that meant: HOMBRES.
As it would turn out, we were rooming with four large Slovakian boys who really liked to party. When I say large, I mean they were tall, one or two were very muscular, and they were LOUD. Adrienne and I crawled into bed, exhausted, and at around 3:30 or 4:00, the Slovakians enter, loud and intoxicated. I was on the top bunk, poor Adrienne right on their level. Much noise (including grunts?) and knocking about later, our room stayed silent.
I don’t remember what hour we rose, but we went out hunting for breakfast. We found some juice and some sort of sustinence, and then planned how to get to Parc Güell. Several metro stops and a bus later, we found our way to Parc Güell, and spent several hours wandering, talking, eating the snacks we bought earlier, and running our hands over the tiles Gaudi transformed the park with. Adrienne was looking snazzy in a new suede jacket, and I was wearing some flats I had purchased for my birthday. The sun was shining, and Barcelona looked AMAZING from the high-point that Parc Güell was perched on.
We got there early enough to have the park to ourselves for a time. Flowers were already blooming in mid-March, cacti flanked the paths, and wispy trees gave languid shade to parts of the park. It began to get rather hot, and we found a quiet area to sit. We planned out our next stop, and decided to make it to the Sagrada Familia.
A bus and a few more metro stops later, we arrived downtown, close to Las Ramblas, and with our handy tourist map got to La Sagrada Familia, only to find hundreds of like-minded people already there. By this time, the Spanish sun, already blazing in March, drove us to the conclusion that it would be more pertinent to find food, nap, and then reform our game plan.
After a lunch with terrible sangria, cubes of cheese, and some other foods I don’t remember (we both agreed the meal was less than satisfactory), Adrienne and I found our way to the Museu Picasso de Barcelona, where we spent the next few hours admiring this genius’s amazing pieces, and then cavorting in the museum cafe making up limericks and rhymes about historical figures.
After that, dinner! If you go to Barcelona, I know that there are thousands of restaurants, but Origens was excellent. It wasn’t super pricey, the location was awesome, and the service was amazing. Adrienne and I almost went to the beach at night, but realized that we didn’t really want to be out super late, as we had to wake up at 5:30 am to catch the bus back to the airport.
The Slovakians had other plans for us. In our pajamas, without contacts in, the Slovakians came in and began attempting to coerce Adrienne and I to come out clubbing with them. They promised to have us back in time for our shuttle. Adrienne and I declined many times, but ended up having a couple hours of conversation with our new international friends. They invited us to visit them in Bratislava (which I have always wanted to go to), and explained how American speak English.
“You Americans speak English like you have a hot po-tay-toe in your mouth”, and then went on to fake an American English accent, which was really quite accurate! Eventually they went out to explore the Barcelona night, and Adrienne and I slept to the terribly early hour, then got up to leave the beautiful city we spent only one full day in.
Hasta luego, Barcelona, pero no adios!