This cough is definitely the plague, definitely. I assume cause of my superhuman western immunity it’s why I haven’t died yet. To be honest I’ve had this plague since Paris a month ago, a MONTH ago. Dam you to *cough* hell *cough* flem!
I visit a Pharmacia with the disco strobe lights out the front in the quest to slay this burden. I conjure up my best Spanish that involves me pretending to cough into my hand. The man in the lab coat looks puzzled, maybe he doesn’t know my dialect of Spanish. I mention tablets and he nods assertively and brings back a red box. My enthusiasm for a now tangible remedy is growing and I happily pay the 5.60 euros. With a spring in my step I open the box outside.
“It’s just sugar…….this are just bloody lollies!”
“Try them” gemma reassures, “maybe they’re really effective?”
“Oh YUCK! Its [email protected]*king liquorice.”
I’ll tell you what doesn’t fail.
“What?” I hear you all ask
God bless forward, free and liberated thinking when it comes to women’s beach attire. Swim tops are most definitely optional in Barcelona. Maybe that top bit of material is too expensive to purchase, because there ain’t much in the bottoms either. Some are just bits of string!
The only problem is… and yes I know what you’re thinking, how in the world could there be a problem with boobs. The problem is where to look. I mean you stroll down to towards the main beach of Barcelona. You check out the world trade building, the big gold fish looking thingy and the beach tennis courts. You try find an available piece of sand on the beach.
“Look gem, waves, let’s go there.”
Once you find a spot large enough to place your towel, you sit down and then WAMMY.
t*** everywhere. Titties to the front, to the back, to the left and to the right. There in the surf, there at the shower, they are literally everywhere in all their glory. Thank god for sunglasses.
(Insert nice transition from one story to the next.)
So Barcelona has all this abstract art and its pioneer was this guy Gaudi. He did a lot of work all throughout the city, namely the over 600 year old unfinished church (eta 2026?) the Sagrada Familia and the also famous Park Gruell. The later in which I found to be quite memorable for a number of reasons. His architecture features mainly mosaic collaborations of colours and designs. Granny would absolutely love it. Entry to the park is FREE! We went on a lovely sunny day with a slight breeze. When we arrived at the park there seemed an obvious lack of people (Indians) trying to sell you sh*t.
Now I’m definitely not racist and there is not as many as in Thailand or Bali but the whole
“You buy now” gets old, super quick. So to be able to sit back on a Gaudi designed mosaic chair and to gaze around the scenery without seeing fake ray bans was very welcome. It wasn’t until a walk encompassing the park was undertaken that the true reason behind the lack of Hawkers was revealed.
From the top our descent was dotted by several hawkers selling all matter of cheap and nasty. Walking anywhere within close proximity to these people would prompt there auto spiel.
“Agua, aqua, cold water?”
“Birra, Beer, Cerveza?” or if you wandering the streets at night
“Hash, marijuana, cocaine?”
Just as this particular guy was halfway through his the whites of his eyes lit up like when your dorm mate stumbles in at 330am and turns the light on.
His college fastidiously pulls all four corners of his blanket, bundling the cheap necklaces into the middle before joining his mate full tilt down the hill. The police officer on scooter casually pursuing.
In the moment of surprise the hawker had dropped one of the said necklaces on the ground right at Gemma’s feet. She looks down it, he looks down at it, He looks at her, she looks at him, and you could see the decision run through his mind.
“Do I risk getting caught by the cops for a 3 euro necklace” I imagine him thinking
Gemma picks it up and pockets it, her conscious questioning the decision.
“What if he comes chasing after me for it?”
“Just give it back.” I conclude
We continue to watch as the policeman scatters more hawkers like a small child in a flock of pigeons. They accumulate in a garden section as the policeman on his motorbike circles the garden on the footpath. It’s a very curious game of cat and mouse.
Nearing the bottom of the hill and back into the opening surrounded by the before mentioned mosaic chairs, I spot an obvious scout for the hawkers. A moment later I’m in the opening where at least 10 different individuals had set up there 2 dollar shops. Sitting down in the warm sunlight I take interest in the street ballet that unfolds, the hawkers get a faint whiff of impending danger and they all pack their shops within seconds and gallivant across the opening to a supposed safe area. It continues on, cop goes this way, they go that way, cop goes that way and they go this way. I find it amusing and ponder the reason behind to game.
“Maybe they need a permit”
“Maybe it’s straight out illegal”
“Maybe it’s just much nicer without them”
“Maybe people complain about it”
“Why can you busk but not sell?”
“I seem to be doing a lot of thinking”
I guess I’ve always thought a lot about many different things, asked myself the questions. I think now I have the luxury of time to indulge in such pleasures. Isn’t that what discovery is all about?