7-10 May Barcelona
Well the trip had to start somewhere! So why not sunny Barcelona? After 30 hours of flying - with stops in Singapore and Dubai - we finally arrived in Barcelona on Tuesday afternoon. Needless to say, the flights were rather gruelling. The only perks being duty free cigars in Dubai (GARY RANT ALERT: free of Australia's nanny state taxes and plain packaging) and unique flavoured Twisties such as "Curry Dude" (yes, that's what the packet said) and "BBQ cheese" (I'm not quite sure how you manage to cook cheese on a BBQ but there you go…).
Our first afternoon in Barcelona was spent walking through the neighbourhood surrounding our hotel and raiding the local supermarket shelves. Turns out we're a block away from the grandest hospital I have ever seen. Just take a look at that thing (see pics below)!! If I was in the back on an ambo and saw that building though the window I'd think I'd died and gone to the gates of heaven! As for the local supermarket, all I need to tell you is that they have balls of buffalo mozzarella cheese for under €2 (in Aus they cost about $8 or $9 for the same sized ball). As my dad would say in his broken Italian accent "Ma please". After the buffalo mozzarella took care of my airline-food-induced constipation, we hit the sack early and prepared to take on the city centre on day 2.
Our second day in Barcelona was spent seeing all the major sites in the city centre. We started the day with a walking tour that made me realise why travelling Aussies complain about Americans. (GARY RANT ALERT) As somewhat of an anglophile and a lover all American sports and food, I'd never come across the quintessential "loud American tourist". Well the waking tour helped me tick that off the to-do list! Christ almighty, they're louder than an Elton John sweater and they never. ever. shut. up. I didn't come halfway across the world to hear your goddamn life story from junior school through to college!
The walking tour introduced us to the main Cathedral, some awesome Roman ruins under the city (basically an entire city underneath the present day city!) and the bloody history of Barcelona. Every single landmark and major tradition in Barcelona was forged as a result of a brutal and bloody war. Oh well, it's sure as hell a lot more interesting than the "this is what happened when we finally released a bunch of convicts" history we have back home. From there we made our way through "La Rambla" - a street market with a reputation for the world's best pick pockets. The sight of all that food was mind boggling (see pics below), but some of it tasted nowhere near as awesome as it looked. Still, we managed to find a few different cured meats and salamis that were worth writing home about (or at least blogging about).
Day 3 was spent making our way to Montjuic - a mountain named after the Jews which overlooks the entire city. The views from the top were simply breathtaking. No photo could do them justice - but we tried nonetheless (see pics below). Now we're going to tempt fate again and make our way back to La Rambla for the evening. Mum and Dad say it's even better at night.
Well that's all for now. Off to Madrid tomorrow to tour the Stadio Vicente Calderon, the home of Atletico Madrid, who once boasted Diego Forlan (Gary's man crush) in their roster. Thanks for reading.
Til next time, stay beautiful folks ;-)