Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Barcelona Baloney Sandwiches

Sepia colored dreams.

Pickle shaped buildings of jade.

Valleys of city and towering mountains of dry brush.

Injects of modern art.

Barcelona surprised me. Tired and achey, we pulled into this city on the Eurorail from Paris at 8:30 in the morn. It wasn't a pleasant journey.

Monday I came home from a rather grumpy shopping trip with my mom (bought a dress and checked out a French health store - goat brie and kamut essene bread are the shitzle-snitzle), packed my things and off we went. While waiting at the station, these three French station police or whatever the fuck they were decided it would be cute to target us out (pointing and staring at us) and do some sort of intimidation crap with us. It was silly and I nicknamed them the weirdo trio (cause they were pale and pimpley and weird). I guess boredom leads them to the worldwide fun of "let's profile the blackie". lol. But I suppose that's what I get for daring to wear my fro' out. Shame on me. Shame! Bull (and that goes to every last person who tried to stare me down. My fro' is cool and purely, naturally me cot dangit!). :D People need to handle the afro and if they can't they can go suck a teat.

But yea, so we got on the train, which was claustrophobic. The cabins were small and had pop out beds. I was with three other family members and we tried to sleep. The room got hot and then someone outside started illegally smoking. The train was careening around the its tracks feeling as if it would derail at any moment. It wasn't a pleasant journey at all.

Arriving in Barcelona, we hopped it on over to the rental agency only to be told our place would not be ready until 12'ish. So we left our luggage at the place and went in search for breakfast and a hop on hop off bus tour. While waiting on my mom to get tickets for the bus I discovered the dirtiest place in Europe - a square filled with pigeons and bird crap covering everything. I shuddered at the sight of this. And then my older brother and father decided to take a picture amongst all the filth. Needless to say I spazzed out.

So my mom gets the bus tickets, now we had to wait in a huge line of other tourists in order to board a bus. While waiting we caught a glimpse of my grandpa talking to someone on a bench in the distance. When it came time for me to retrieve him, I got caught up in the people he was talking to. It was an American guy, maybe in his 50's, and his European wife - they'd both been in Barcelona for 40 years. They were friendly and engaging and curious about Bermuda and us (my younger brother was there too) as a whole because I guess we were different from your average tourist. As they depart they take photos of us. Now, we are surrounded by a line of tourists so I felt very uncomfortable as they took pics because everyone in line just stared at us. My mom mentioned to me that they were about to board so I grabbed my Pa and younger brother up and departed. I was told I have a very "quiet intelligence" by the man and his wife. Cool, but in all a very strange experience. Perhaps it would have been better vibes had it been in a coffee shop and not surrounded by throngs of touristas.

The bus tour was nicer than the one in Paris and London mainly because people in Barcelona drive sooooo much better than people in the two places. Paris is the worse though. We saw funky architecture all around, even the churches. There was one building designed to look like dragon, and a church straight out of some weird scifi fantasy dream. This city is a city of modern art. It is like none other I've been to. Infact, I would have never expected a city to be this way. But each city I've traveled to on this trip has had its own flavor - Paris and its romantic architecture and white buildings; and London with its mixture of contemporary and Victorian. Barcelona is like everything modern art and architecture from the early 1900's onwards. It seems like this is where it started and everyone else just followed suit. I like it though. This city is also hilly and right at the foot of old mountains which lay right on the Mediterranean. It is incredible to see the whole city from the site of '94 Olympics stadium.

So the bus tour went well despite a close bout with heat stroke and having to sit downstairs (it's a double decker bus) in the a/c and rest my head for a while. It's 95 degrees here, although without the Bermuda humidity is actually not that bad. We had time to kill , especially after being told that our place would not be ready until 3 instead of 12. I wanted to sleep though, just lay my head down in a soft bed, peel off my smelly cloths and just rest, but we didn't have that option. We could only just keep on trekking. A stop at a Chinese food restaurant that had an English menu helped to replenish our spirits. It was kind of embarrassing because my grandpa kept demeaning our Chinese waiter "I want a Chine-nee drink" or "I want a Chine-nee dessert". I know it's just his generation and out of his own ignorance (not too many Chinese in Bermuda) but it was still very embarrassing and rude. I know if my grandma was around she'd check him on that hard. So my Pa gave the poor waiter a big tip. >.<

My parents and Pa split to go back to the rental agency to get the luggage while my brothers and I took another bus to get to our rental. We rode that bud route twice just relaxing and taking everything in. We decide that we MUST do a bike tour tomorrow, and to check out the "bollero" the bowling alley just around the way from where we stay. We finally hopped off the bus after an hour and walked a few blocks to our place. My dad was outside waiting for us. 12 floors later and we were finally in our rental - a nice contemporary place where you have to pull these giant things from the ceiling to act as blinds; two floors; no phone or internet. Right now I've gone bootleg. Shhh ...

Time to get some rest finally! And brush up on my Spanish.

1 comment:

Shel said...


sounds a little rough, but it seems like youre really enjoying spain. when we go i want you to show me the dragon building, k.