Arriving in the early afternoon by train then stupidly getting the tube to our apartment was not ideal with luggage – the price of a taxi has to be worth it.
But, I am with these students now – Hannah, Georgia and Grace . Our room is all white, cool and airy with a view over a park and very close to the beach.
I arranged to meet my son Matthews flat mate Gemma from his Edinburgh days – She is local and was bought up in the city- and how lucky are we .
Gemma walked us into the city – showing us the highlights and passing two Gaudi buildings on the way.
We stopped at a bar selling only Jambon-they had a selection of shoulders and legs from various regions Spain. With a glass of Cava (bubbly wine) we enjoyed a sampling plate .
The streets are crowded with people filling the hundreds of bars and restaurants lining the pavements or in the middle of the road .
Yes ….even the waiters have to cross the road.
The city is preparing for a festival celebrating Barcelona – by now it’s 10 pm – fire workers are going off – music seems to be coming from everywhere and a band passes down the street – moving aside when vehicles come..
It’s time now for us to have Tapas and a jug of Sangria.
Small plates of little squid, croquettes with ham, fresh tomato and olive oil crostini, fried potato cubes with spicy tomato sauce and prawn skewers.
Lucky to have Gemma – she knew about putting your name down -our table was ready while many others waited in the streets patiently with a glass of wine in their hands.
Gemma had the weekend planned out.She walked us from our hotel to our closest district of Born, through parks full of children’s activities, and even a master class in hip hop dance was going on. In and out of a myriad of narrow streets in the Gothic quarter. Stopping for a coffee and and empanadas before arriving at the beach lined with bodies sunbathing.
We were early for lunch at 2 pm – !!!!
Sitting over looking the marina on an outside deck we had the BEST Paella lunch – starting with tapas and a couple of jugs of Sangria we enjoyed a fabulous long lunch. Once again the incredible Gemma came up trumps and booking at Barceloneta was excellent.
A walking tour we were on and walking we did – by waiting some time in queue for the a cable car to Montjuic park we could take in the fabulous vista before walking ………. to view the huge architectural building of the Museum of National Art – with the Montjuic fountain in front – although today it’s obscured by the massive stage ready for the festival tonight.
Behind us was an old bull ring – recently turned into a shopping mall. No bull fights in Barcelona any more !!!
It’s 7 pm – the tube made quick work of our return to the hotel – my age was showing up as I chose to spend a quiet night in with my feet up – but Barcelona does not sleep and it’s music and partying is legendary. The girls went off to meet New Zealand friends and enjoy the city…..