I'm breaking up the TripOfALifetime (TOAL) into destinations. First stop: The bustling city of Barcelona which was our ships home. We had a day before the cruise and one after.
My virgin-European feet hit the ground and the excitement of the city had me all smiles. It was warm and filled with beautiful people walking and mopeds riding everywhere.
Gaudi is a famous architect and we had to check out the Sagrada Familia. Imagine a massive unfinished church. It looked like a dripping candle, like one of those huge ones with wax falling off it....like Kat Von D has in her tattoo shop in LA. He started building it in the late 1800's and it's won't be finished until the middle of the next century they say. I heard each pillar is for a disciple and once finished there will be 2 at the top, one for Jesus and one for his Mother. It was beyond a doubt fantastic, humongous and unlike anything I'd ever seen.
We had breakfast at this cute little cafe and little grandmas were speaking Spanish and enjoying their tiny coffees. A lovely tapas dinner was had later on...the restaurants don't really open until 8:30pm. The difference between Europeans and us is that they are so much more relaxed. We are so busy to hurry and eat and get the check and go and they spend hours ejoying their meals without a care. I hope a bit of this style sticks with me.
We zipped around on the subway, or Metro as they call it and spent much time at Las Ramblas. A cool street that goes on for blocks filled with booths, street performers and outdoor cafes. It leads down to the water which holds the Christopher Columbus statue. Next thing you know we're walking through the city and a huge protest was about to begin. Thousands of people with signs were crowding around us and the streets were lined with riot police cars. It was really exciting and a bit scary at the same time. I couldn't read their signs so I had no idea what the march was for until I got home. They were upset with planned budget cuts about to hurt education and health care.
I wish I had more time to explore this great city but the 2 days went fast. I highly recommend visiting Barcelona if you ever get the chance!
Next up: Nice, France/Monte Carlo, Monaco