Barcelona – Day One
We got into Barcelona late last night. The flight was good. We took a bus and then the subway to get to our hostel. We made it without any problems. The hostel is nice, it’s very simple; two beds, two lockers, and a community bathroom and shower room. The people are reallly nice and the location of our hostel is perfect. We’re right in the middle of the La Ramblas area, an area full of artisans, flowers, restaurants, clubs, and tons of people. We’re also really close to the port.
We got up this morning, ate a nice breakfast at a cute little cafe in La Ramblas. Then we took the subway to the Temple de Sargrada Familia. Wow! It is one of the most beautiful churches I have ever seen. It was designed by Antoni Gaudi and is one of the most famous sights in Barcelona. Construction began in 1884 and is still underway today. Most of the exterior appears to be completed, with enormous towers and extremely intricate detail, the inside has a long way to go. Funding is solely based off of donations, giving it the name ‘The Church of the Poor,’ and tourist admissions. Although the inside is not completed, it is still one of the most beautiful churches I’ve ever seen. I can´t imagine what it will look like years from now. We were able to go to the top of one of the towers . Wow! It was such an amazing view. We were able to see some of the detail of the other towers, some of the construction that was still being done, and an amazing view of the city. There is also a really nice museum in the basement with original sketchings of Gaudi’s and replicas of the architecture. Gaudi died in 1926 and is buried within a crypt in the basement of the church. He’s definitely made a lasting imprint in the world and on me. I hope that I will be able to see his work completed within my lifetime.
After our lovely morning admiring La Sagrada Familia, we made our way to the Cathedral of Santa Eularia. Unfortunately, we didn’t didn’t get to go inside becuase we came when it was closed, but we were still able to admire it’s exterior beauty. Perhaps will we go to mass there Sunday if we figure out what time mass is. Anyway, we decided to head to the Picasso museum. However, we somehow ended up in the shopping district and one thing led to another…needless to say, we didn’t see any Picasso today. After a long day of site-seeing (and some shopping), we headed back to our hostel for a late afternoon siesta.
Once we were all rested up, we got dressed up and headed out for a stroll along the port. We passed the Christopher Columbus monument on our way. It was pretty cool. The smell of fresh sea water was so refreshing and the water was beautiful at night. The port is really big; with lots of boats, a mall, several restaurants, an Imax, and of course the aquarium. It was so cool to be in Barcelona walking along the sea with Giuliangela.
After wondering around for a while, we headed back towards the La Ramblas area and went to dinner at a nice restaurant by our hostel. One interesting thing about Spain is that they eat dinner later than any other country. Restaurants don´t even open until 8:30 or 9:00. Another interesting observation while I’m at it is the different languages that they speak here. The primary language is Catalan, which seems to be a conglomeration of Spanish, French, and Italian. The secondary language in Spanish. Then I would say that we heard a lot of Italian and very little English. So back to dinner. The restaurant was really nice. The food…I lacked the courage to try authentic Spanish (not to be confused with Mexican) food and decided to have chicken that I’ve been craving forever. (P.S. We couldn’t find KFC last night). Anyway, it was interesting to play the guessing game with Giuliangela’s paella. While Juan (the name we gave to her Sabastian crawfish) was staring at me, we tried to figure out what the food was that seemed to have ”antlers,” or antenae. Let’s just say that I offered Giuliangela some chicken and then we had really amazing dessert. It’s time for bed now. We have a long day ahead of us tomorrow full of lots of site-seeing and no shopping, I promise. Goodnight. Love from Barcelona!