Thursday, October 3, 2013

Wednesday + {Day Sixteen: Barcelona}

After yesterday we were pretty beached out, so today we spent the day admiring some of Gaudi’s works and exploring the city. But first I spent the morning putting the finishing touches on my third packet of the semester for grad school.

Then, once everyone was ready, we stopped at La Rambla and the famous Farmers’ Market there. Gooligan and I got fresh juice (coconut/strawberry and mango respectively). It was delicious. As we wandered the stalls, sipping our drinks, everything looked so incredible. Gooligan and I ended up splitting a burrito and then later Gooligan, Sarah, and I went halvies on some Ibrico ham, the famous Spanish ham! It might’ve been better with something else—in salad or on a cheese sandwhich—but by itself it was potently overwhelming, especially on a blazingly hot day.

After the market we caught the metro to the super famous Gaudi cathedral still under construction, Sagrada Familia. We walked around it, seeing before the “finished” side and unfinished. The amount of detail and symbolism is awe-inspiring.

Next, we went to a house Gaudi had designed. Also absolutely gorgeous. I wish we’d had more time in Barcelona to explore more of Gaudi’s works, especially the insides. But alas, we were on a time crunch, so we headed back home. After we took a short siesta, Gooligan and I headed off for the cathedral down the street from our rental. Gorgeous! Gooligan and I toured the entire inside and even went up to the roof. It had cooled off by then and was wonderfully breezy.

Inside the middle of the cathedral was a courtyard with a fountain, pond, and swans! They came right up to the fence and honked at Gooligan.

After that church we took a break and got ice cream—coconut and some kind of chocolate candy—before heading off to another church. We sat inside this one for a long time, just taking in the grandness of the architecture. The amazing thing about churches like these is the mix of tourists and believers. It almost doesn’t matter if you’re a believer or not; the immensity of these churches is so intense that even if you don’t believe, there’s something magical about them.

Finally we headed home. On our way, we ran into Sarah and Shannon and joined them for dinner. Then it was home, shower, packing, and cleaning!

I forgot to mention: our host came by to fix our shower! He was actually really kind and helpful during our whole time in Barcelona! In addition, he brought us a new fan and also called a taxi for us since the one Shannon tried to schedule wanted to charge us seventy euro.


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